JR. Forasteros - September 3, 2017
I Believe in Life Everlasting
More From "Believe"
How many of you have seen House of Cards? It was the first hit TV show from Netflix. It’s a political thriller about an ultra-corrupt politician who cons his way into the White House. The pilot was directed by director David Fincher, who remains an executive producer on the show, along with the star, Kevin Spacey.
The show has been huge for Netflix. Netflix – as I’m sure you know – started as a DVD mail service that quickly put stores like Blockbuster out of business. Then, a few years ago, Netflix started making their own content. Shows like House of Cards and Orange is the New Black and Daredevil.
Why? Because in order for Netflix to remain successful, they have to get and keep subscribers. That’s it. That’s how they make their money. So they made a decision to do everything they could to keep subscribers.
And it turned out, the trick was to figure out what people like to watch.
Because if they know what people like, then they can give them more of what they like, which keeps them happy.
Netflix paid people to watch movies. They created a 36-page training document to help people watch and tag the movies – everything from romance to action to the morality of the characters to whether the plot resolves or not.
They created a huge, insanely complicated categorization system for their movies and TV shows. And then they started tracking what people actually watch. What movies are you clicking on? How often? What do you finish? What do you shut off?
It let Netflix know what kinds of movies you’ll probably like, and put those movies first when you pull up their menu. But it also told them what kind of stuff to make.
For instance, their algorithm told them people like political thrillers, things directed by David Fincher, and things starring Kevin Spacey. So they made a political thriller directed by David Fincher that stars Kevin Spacey. They called it House of Cards and it was a hit.
Not because they got lucky. Because they gamed the system. They followed the path to figure out what would give them the outcome they wanted – shows people want to watch, to keep current subscribers happy and get new subscribers. House of Cards just released its fifth season. In its first four seasons, it was nominated for over 200 awards and won 27 – including 6 emmys.
When you know the goal, it’s easier to figure out how to get there. So as we conclude our series on the Apostle’s Creed, we’re going to review God’s endgame and see how we get there.