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5 Digital Content Management Lessons From Netflix

Posted by Rebecca Spary on 12/6/16 11:00 AM

Whether you’re binge watching the latest season of House of Cards or catching up on Breaking Bad, Netflix has got you covered. It’s the crowning jewel of streaming services and it’s changing the way we consume and manage digital content.

Netflix and its counterparts (HBO Go, Hulu, Amazon, etc.) are influencing the way we organize our digital content libraries and how we create our digital content marketing strategies.

The adoption of digital content marketing continues to grow stronger, with 90% of all organizations using content in their marketing efforts (Demand Metric, 2015), and up to 80% of B2B decision makers preferring to receive information via articles and content rather than through advertisements (Melwater, 2015).

However, not enough companies are paying attention to the important lessons that can be learned from Netflix and what makes them so effective.

5 digital content management lesson we can learn from Netflix.png

Back in 2015 Demand Metric did a survey to discover the most popular tactics for content management, these were the results...

  • 22% - A cloud storage system (Dropbox, Box, Google Drive, etc.)
  • 22% - Email attachments
  • 18% - CRM or Sales Force Automation
  • 17% - An Intranet
  • 9% - Personal hard drive
  • (Demand Metric, 2015)

Despite the fact that these are the most popular methods, they are not the most effective! In fact, the majority fail to offer content that is easy to find or use.

Content management is about more than just being able to open content, or using an iPad to sell. The objective is to provide a seamless searching and viewing experience that simplifies the content selling function.

Here’s how Netflix does it right:


1. One Library, Limitless Filtering

Netflix begins to tackle the avalanche of content by sorting content into basic and familiar categories, followed by further sub-divisions like genres and sub-genres. Netflix doesn’t hide content in a folder and then duplicate that content to other folders – instead it puts all of the content in one place, and filters down by related tags.

It’s important for the same content to appear across several tags. For example, a Romantic Comedy appears in both the ‘Romance’ and ‘Comedy’ filters on Netflix. Similar to how your content Themosat 3000 Brochure should appear under ‘brochures’, ‘themosat’, and any other related tags in your digital content library.

Netflix has over 76,000 micro-genre tags for their 40 million+ content pieces (Tech Time, 2016)! They created a unique way for categorizing content, summed up with the basic formula: region + adjectives + noun genre + based on + set in + from the + about + for ages X to Y (Tech Time, 2016).

Netflix has over 76,000 tags for their 40 million+ pieces of content - they're effective content management filters this content based on searches, user preferences, and recommendations.png

Now, you may be thinking that 76,000 tags is too many to manage effectively, but when you look at it from the perspective of your sales teams you can see the that there is a real need for the ability to find specific content for specific buyers.

Like Netflix, you want all your content in one place with several ways to filter that content down - not a bunch of folders and duplicates, that will leave you aimlessly searching for hours*.

*Did you know that the average sales professional spends up to 3 hours a week searching for sales content? Or, that they spend 8 hours searching for customer information every week? For more information on how to implement a successful content management strategy download a free copy of our latest white paper 'Managing the Content Avalanche'.

Download the WHUT white paper: Managing the Content Avalanche


2. Recommended Content

As you rate and view movies or TV shows, Netflix pairs your ratings with those of other viewers who have a similar rating and viewing criteria. Then the moment that you log in you are presented with playlists of content tailored to your user preferences, such as ‘recommended for you’, ‘recently viewed’, ‘recently uploaded’, 'trending’, etc.

The best content management solutions allow users to rate all content, they also track content usage, shares, and views. They allow full integration with your CRM system so that when you select a target prospect or customer from your CRM they can show you:

  • The best content to use for that prospect or customer,
  • The content that has already been shown to that client,
  • How other sales professionals rated that content, and
  • How that content worked for the buyer decision journey / industry.

Recommending content based upon predictive analytics and real-time insights, saves sales teams valuable selling time, and avoids the common offence of repeatedly showing the same content or out-dated material.


3. User Management and Controls

Netflix offers multiple profiles within one account, for example when you login to the library as Batman the content that you see is different from what the Kiddos would see, although they all share one central content library. Netflix’s interface manages multiple profiles to sort the influence of recommended and relevant content, creating a tailored experience.

User management and controls are an essential content management tool just like Netflix's user profiles they recommend content, filter the content library and track content usage by user.jpg

Netflix user controls and customization options create a made-to-measure experience that keeps utilization high and satisfies all users. For example, each profile can create their own custom content playlists, and there are account settings such as parental controls that automatically filter the library.

These user controls are exactly the kind of content management features employed by the best sales enablement solutions:

  • One content library with limits on who sees what at any given time;
  • Easily move between target industries, buyers, and personas to personalize the main screen to only content that matters;
  • Sales playbooks – your own ‘playlists’ – can be created anytime for personalized libraries or streamlined sales team communications.

Your sales teams are more than likely familiar with Netflix’s (or a similar platform's) user controls and customization features, and they're looking for a content management that will provide them with the sames great benefits.


4. Meta-Search Functionality

Netflix's search function is incredibly versatile; it scours descriptions, user reviews, actors, content themes, genres, and even related content. Pulling minor details from any content that could help you to find what you need.

Your content management solution must be capable of searching several fields such as tags, comments, ratings, personas, industries, geographies, upload dates, campaigns, target client, and more, with intelligent sorting that puts the details in order of relevance, making your content distribution more efficient.

Finding the right content is extremely important because...

Netflix Lesson - 3.png(Stats source: Demand Metric, 2015).

When you’re in a sales presentation, your content system should complement your discussion and enhance the sales process, not send you searching through an avalanche of content folders or showing you out-dated materials.


5. Buyer and Consumption Insights

Netflix uses every ounce of data about its users to tailor their content dashboard. They know that your favourite episode of Friends is ‘The One With Chandler in a Box’, they know that your daughter watches cartoons on a Sunday morning, and they know that you’re not so patiently waiting for the new season of Nacros. Data insights are the most important factor to Netflix’s prolonged success.

Your content management solution should offer the same experience, by making prospect and customer data available at all times. The old adage that knowledge is power is correct, when you're armed with information such as which buying stage the prospect is in, which content they enjoyed, how they interacted with the piece that you emailed to them, etc. you have the knowledge to drive better results. 

These buyer and consumption insights allow sales teams to use the right content, at the right time, and with the right people, and they allow marketing teams to create content that that will be successful! 


The Benefits of Netflix-Style Content Management

Next-generation content management allows you to reverse-engineer your content the same way that Netflix is transforming Hollywood - by finding out directly from the source (user data) how they’re using content, which pieces they like, how they tag or organize materials, etc. and then using that information to improve your processes.

Ultimately, content marketing is about keeping the reader’s attention, improving brand loyalty, generating leads, and increasing direct sales (Demand Metric, 2015). The best way to achieve these goals is to utilize a Netflix-style content management solution that streamlines the content process from creation to utilization.

If you’re interested in learning more about the features and benefits of WHUT’s next-generation content management solution then book a demo with one of our sales specialists today.

Book a demo today with Whut Inc to learn more about effective content management!

Topics: Digital Content, Content Management