A recent Hub Research report named “Evolution of Video Branding” revealed that consumers have rated Netflix as the best original title provider, with HBO Max and Disney+ not falling far behind as the services’ streaming film distribution and content catalogs attract new subscribers. “What remains to be seen is whether this streaming-first strategy will transform HBO Max and Disney+ into Netflix replacements, or whether they’ll remain as Netflix supplements,” said Peter Fondulas, Principal at Hub, Co-author of the study.
The study, conducted this month, explores various aspects of original content and how the term influences viewing decisions. The data was garnered based on responses from 1,606 US consumers between the ages of 16-74, who have access to broadband and watch at least 1 hour of TV per week. “So far, Netflix has not only withstood the threats posed by new entrants in the ever-intensifying streaming wars, it has thrived,” Fondulas said.
Placing the word “original'' as a label for content increases its viewership possibilities. 70% of individuals between the ages of 16-34 years old become more interested in shows and movies than those who would be named otherwise. Though 53% of viewers over the age of 35 admit originals increase their interest, most older consumers are less likely to consider the value of a title by its term alone. In recent months, viewers have shifted their preference to Netflix, considering it the best Originals source out of all traditional TV networks and streaming options. The streamer was preferred by 29%, followed by CBS at 6%. The margin between 16-34 year-olds choosing Netflix versus Disney+ as their preferred streaming outlet is 7%, wider than the margin seen among other age groups.
As the streaming platform continues to expand its library of content, just under half of those familiar with Netflix think the service’s original shows and movies are better than in the past, while 16% believe they’re not as good. The remaining 37% see no difference in quality over time. 44% of 16-34-year-olds are most likely to choose Netflix over any other platform, 20 points higher than second-ranked Disney+. Viewers over the age of 35 are most likely to choose CBS in their top-five must-have networks, although Netflix is tied for second with NBC and ABC and 24% of viewers in this age range still selected the streamer as their favorite platform.
The announcements made on behalf of all the platforms drove increases in their subscriber count. 88% of new subscribers reported an original title to be the main reason why they signed up, with 59% listing it as the main reason. Among those who had heard that all 2021 Warner movies would be released on HBO Max on the same day as a theatrical release, 77% call it a reason for subscribing, with 48% saying it was their main reason. Among those who had heard that Disney+ would be the exclusive home for certain new films and franchise titles, 68% name it as a reason for signing up, with 21% calling it their main reason.
What remains to be seen is whether this streaming-first strategy will transform HBO Max and Disney+ into Netflix replacements, or whether they’ll remain as Netflix supplements.” Peter Fondulas Principal, Co-Author, Hub Research