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Marketing Plan: Netflix

Introduction

Since consumer diversity is increasingly rapid, it is imperative for a company to effectively focus its resources to reach its identified target market. This is achieved through segmentation, which is largely done to identify and classify the needs of the consumers. In an earlier part of this report, it was proposed that a marketing plan be developed for Netflix focusing on digital video games as well as hard copy rental services. This essay identifies and rationalizes a segmentation approach for the same, suggests a positioning statement, develops a marketing mix, and looks at measures of success as well as factors that should be considered if the plan were to be tailored for international expansion.

To begin with, recent reports indicate that there has been a massive growth in the number of individuals who play video games in America. In fact, the industry was projected to hit a $108bn high by the close of 2017. This opens up new opportunities for Netflix as it would tap into those customers who are less interested in its current specialty of movies. Additionally, with the fierce competition it faces from competitors such as Amazon and Hulu, it is imperative that Netflix expands and invests into video games to increase its market share.

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Market Segmentation

Market segmentation allows a firm to identify the characteristics of its possible target market and is important in informing how resources will be effectually utilized to meet the needs of the identified consumers. Demographic segmentation refers to the quantifiable characteristics of the target population. Research shows that in America, there are about 59% of male gamers whereas females comprise 41%. The average age of gamers is between 18-35 years whereas the average age of game purchasers is 38 years. Additionally, the income levels of parents who buy games for their children is above $30,000 per year. Geographic wise, of the 109.25 Netflix subscribers worldwide, America comprises of approximately 53 million whereas Canada has 5.2 million. Australia had about 7.5 million in 2016. America, therefore, makes the primary market.

Regarding psychographic segmentation, the target market may be those that need to relax after a long day of work and those that value family time. The target market can also be the 53% of people who play video games as a means of connecting with friends. They can also target the experiencers who need a variety of entertainment means or the thinkers who appreciate challenges that would be provided by technical video games. On behavioral segmentation, the target would be those who give preference for value rather than the cost and those who are invested in keeping up with new trends. From the different segmentation approaches described above, the geographic approach would be the best as it captures a bigger target market compared to the other approaches. It identifies the behavior of the parents/game purchasers (age and income), their location, and captures some of their psychographic qualities (they are likely to be invested in their families, hence place importance in spending time with children and friends).

Target Market Description

From the segmentation above, America would be the primary target market since it has the biggest share of Netflix subscribers. The target market would also comprise of people between 18-38 years. This age bracket would encompass students and adults who are employed. Additionally, both male and female genders in America play video games. Further, those who earn over $30,000 or slightly less would also characterize the target market as they can afford computers, iPads, and smartphones which are all important in video games access. Game renters would also comprise of those parents/adults who would be too busy to go to cinemas.

Positioning Statement

A positioning statement communicates a products unique value as compared to the competitors. As such, a suggested positioning statement would be For games that capture your imagination, which meet the needs of old and new gamers too. Games for those that love challenges and those that love their friends. Netflix games open a whole new gaming world.

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Marketing Mix

Product

As mentioned earlier, the suggestion is for Netflix to provide digitized video games as well as hard copy rental services of the same. This will help Netflix to diversify the entertainment options it avails to its client base, a step imperative with the increased competition. Netflix should provide streaming services for video games as this option will not only attract newer clients and generate more attention from the current ones but also be appreciated for the convenience it will provide. Netflix should also be keen to position the video games services as a cheaper and affordable option. However, differentiating the product may be relatively difficult as Netflix may also be availing the same video games that other video game companies offer. However, Netflix can add more unique games by investing in original content as it has been doing for movies.

Place

The importance of place in the success of a firm cannot be overstated. First, Netflix should take advantage of the massive growth in technology. As such, its website should be easily accessible and should provide navigation options that are easy to follow for consumers. Netflix can also mail the video games to its customers as it has been doing for the mail-DVD services for its movies. Availing the same through multichannel platforms such as Nintendo and Xbox will also be a good approach. The online stores/presence should be appealing to the customers and should also be available all the time. This will guarantee convenience as customers are sure that they can stream/rent the video games from the comfort of their homes as Wesley and Barczak advice. The decisions made regarding place may provide the competitive advantage that will set a firm apart from its customers, but they may also be a step to a firms downfall if poor decisions are made.

Pricing

Netflix should ensure that its pricing attracts and maintains customers as it has been doing for its movies. It will thus be imperative to consider the desired image, what the competitors charge, and the value that the target market will get from the product. By working with game producers to get original content, Netflix can use pricing as its competitive advantage and set prices for its video games in the market. This is referred to as value-based-pricing. The pricing is based on the product value. So far, Netflix has been using this approach, and it has worked well. This, therefore, may be a suitable approach for video games streaming and rental pricing. Netflix can also position its video games as the affordable and cheaper option with the promise of uncompromised quality. Since the game retailers are likely to sell similar products, Netflix can also employ a strategy that allows it to charge rates similar to theirs or lower. Positioning itself as an option for affordable, yet quality video games will help build consumer confidence.

Promotion

Netflix can utilize social media to reach its target markets. Its main target group members are likely to be active social media users. As such, it is easy to draw their attention to the video games. Additionally, this approach has been proven as one of the most effective for marketing to gamers. Personal marketing videos, pop-up advertisements, banners, and add-ons on different websites should also be employed to reach a wider audience. Marketing on video game websites may also be an effective marketing approach. Such platforms offer banners that offer great visibility and great opportunities. Lastly, seeing that Netflix has already become a global brand, its video game services can also be promoted through popular events such as in Golden Globe Awards or the Emmys.

Metrics to analyze the success of the plan

Once the plan has been implemented, it is important to keep track and analyze whether it has been successful in meeting the set objectives or not. One way to analyze its success is to consider the sales numbers. In the beginning, this can be analyzed on a monthly basis to establish whether the sales are increasing or decreasing. If positive growth is observed, the plan may be deemed to have been successful. Another approach is to consider the return on investment. This considers whether the resources that were invested in the project have generated any profit. If there is a negative result, then it might be wise to revisit the plan and establish what did not work. Lastly, one can measure the success through customer responses. This can be generated through online or personal surveys. Asking people, for example, of how they learned about the video games, and what aspect they like most, can help provide useful information on aspects of the marketing plan. Changes, if need be, can then be made.

International Considerations

What works in one country may not necessarily work in another. As such, one may need to tailor a marketing plan when using it to market a product in a foreign country. As such, for the Netflix video games marketing plan, several international considerations should be put in mind. The first is the consumer habits. One may, for example, need to establish whether the country is an individualistic one or a collective one. This aspect has an impact on consumers buying decisions. Another consideration would be the laws of the country. Whereas it may be lawful to advertise some products in America, the same may not be acceptable in other countries. For example, violent video games may be restricted by some laws in some countries. The third consideration would be the ethnicity differences. For example, whereas Netflix may advertise a certain video game as being suitable for both genders, the same may fail in another country. There are cultures where females may be barred from participating in video games due to ethnic beliefs. Netflix should thus consider these three aspects of international marketing.

Conclusion

Netflix has proven to the world that effective planning and the fulfillment of consumer needs is imperative for success. With the increased competition from companies such as Amazon and Hulu, it would be a wise move if it expanded to video games streaming and hard copy rentals. This explains why this plan should be funded. It shows that such expansion would provide an opportunity for Netflix to not only maintain its current consumer volume but also attract those who have little interest in movies. Investing in the same would also make Netflix a force to reckon with as it has already gained its recognition from gaining subscribers worldwide.

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