This week, Netflix came to Germany in France and has plans for the upcoming years to enter six additional European countries. This expansion will increase Netflix viewers by the millions.
But the dramatic change of audience brings the necessity for internal changes to the brand. Netflix will have to alter language settings and add native shows to the list. Many Europeans speak English, but with cultural differences, you can’t expect Europeans to love all of the same shows as Americans. The humor is different, the interactions are different, the homes, the clothes – you can’t expect Europeans to enjoy it in the same way that Americans do.
The way Europeans will watch Netflix is different as well. Europeans generally watch less TV than Americans do, so it is unlikely that the Europeans will spend hours and hours binge watching Breaking Bad.
To be successful in Europe, Netflix will have to alter itself to fit its new and growing audience, or at least split, in some way, into two separate brands. The logos, colors and main ideas of Netflix can remain consistent but in order to be a successful brand, Netflix has to change to accommodate all audiences. Perhaps certain functionalities and shows can vary for European users and Netflix can remain as is for its American users.
The most successful brands alter themselves to fit the audience. Sometimes they change product and sometimes they have to change their image. Communicating with your audience is the essence of advertising and successful brands. You can communicate with your audience unless you strive to identify with them. I think that Netflix will have to do a little bit of image and product revamping, and the best way to do it is two split into different branches, just as Netflix streaming and video has done. Never the less, we will have to wait for the next upcoming weeks to see how Europe reacts to the Netflix phenomenon that has already captivated the United States.
Barzic, Gwénaëlle, and Leila Abboud. “Netflix takes on language challenge in next phase of European expansion.” chicagotribune.com. N.p., 12 Sept. 2014. Web. 12 Sept. 2014. <http://www.chicagotribune.com/bluesky/technology/sns-rt-us-netflix-europe-20140912-story.html>.