Netflix India rolls out its first digital brand film

Titled Commitment, the digital brand film is part of Netflix’s social campaign #LifeWithoutNetflix, which is being promoted since 21 July


A still from the digital brand film, part of the marketing campaign online streaming service Netflix has launched in India, titled Commitment.
A still from the digital brand film, part of the marketing campaign online streaming service Netflix has launched in India, titled Commitment.

New Delhi: Popular online streaming service Netflix, which entered India in January, has launched a marketing campaign.

The platform’s first-ever digital brand film for India titled Commitment features standup comedian Abish Mathew, who proposes to his lady love over a dinner date.

Surprised and ecstatic, the girlfriend accepts the proposal when she peeks into ring box to find Mathew’s Netflix Id and password.

The film is part of Netflix’s social campaign #LifeWithoutNetflix, which is being promoted since 21 July.

Before the launch of the brand film, Netflix was promoting the campaign on Twitter tagging social media influencers using #TheNetflixLife. The company has not divulged the details about the agency behind the campaign.

“The social campaign was created primarily to share with our users the things we love about Netflix and the great stories they can find on our service. We’ve seen some great engagement so far and look forward to building communities within the Indian audience to help them discover content they will love and better understand what they want in an entertainment experience,” said a Netflix spokesperson in an emailed response to queries on the campaign.

The streaming platform, which has completed six months in the country, has received a lukewarm response. Its only big announcement has been the country’s first original series - Sacred Games -- produced in partnership with Phantom Films. The platform has also rolled out Brahman Naman, a comedy by celebrated Indian director Qaushiq Mukherjee popularly known as Q, globally.

“We are pursuing recent Bollywood titles, notable indie films, memorable classic Bollywood titles and the best of regional cinema (Tamil, Gujarati, Punjabi and Marathi). Our goal is to bring Indian cinema to not only all regions of India but to the world so you’ll find Indian film titles in all countries in which Netflix exists, accessible to all our over 81 million members. Raman Raghav 2.0 is among the titles that we picked up at Cannes this year as an exclusive on Netflix,” said the Netflix spokesperson.

The company said that Netflix’s early adopters are consumers who are digitally-connected, tech-savvy and those who have smartphones and own Apple accounts. But the service is starting to build around this momentum and increasing its customer base through deeper local insights.

To make Netflix experience more enriching globally, the company is spending $800 million on technology and development in 2016.

“We’ve spent several years figuring out how to optimize bandwidth usage while delivering the same or better picture quality. This means our videos use less bandwidth, particularly important in countries with connectivity challenges and on mobile networks. We recently introduced a new mobile data saver tool to help members better control how much data they use when streaming on cellular networks,” the spokesperson added.

While Netflix is flexing its muscle to take a bigger slice of the growing Indian video streaming market, Rajiv Dingra, founder and CEO, WAT Consult, a digital and social media agency, finds its communication clichéd.

“The film tries to portray Netflix password as a prized possession which is not yet true for India,” he pointed out, noting that the film does not target viewers who are not aware about the platform.

“Youngsters who are aware of what Netflix is, will anyway be on it. I think advertising was needed to get those on board who don’t know about the platform. The film hardly talks about the catalogue, and new users who are not aware about what Netflix has to offer will not be able to understand anything through this ad,” he said.

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