Streaming Services Shift Strategy to Raise Profits

Photo from Glenn Carstens Peters via Unsplash

Streaming Services Shift Strategy to Raise Profits

By Movieguide® Contributor

Streaming services are looking for ways to attract new subscribers and keep old ones, from bundles and mergers to making content that will appeal to a broader audience. 

A recent report from The New York Times contained interviews with many of the streaming industry’s big names, and they were all in agreement about what’s next — “More ads, higher prices, and fewer big swings on prestige TV,” per Tech Crunch. 

These changes all mark streaming services’ new strategy, which is based on profitability rather than subscriber growth. 

Many services are pushing ad-supported plans for their subscribers, which could affect the type of original content they’re making. Advertisers want their ads to reach a mass audience of viewers, so crime procedurals, hospital shows and soap operas are the move for streamers. 

However, this doesn’t mean streamers are giving up on making prestige content. 

Amazon’s Prime Video head Mike Hopkins said, “Procedurals and other tried and true formats do well for [Prime], but we also need big swings that have customers saying ‘Wow, I can’t believe that just happened’ and will have people telling their friends.’”

Other changes planned for the streaming landscape include more live sports offerings, more bundle packages with other services and either the shutdown or a merging of existing streamers. 

Paramount reportedly entertained merger offers from Warner Bros. Discovery and Peacock and had settled on Skydance Entertainment, but that deal recently fell apart. Movieguide® reported:

Following the breakdown of Paramount’s merger with Skydance, the company’s stock fell below $10 for the first time since Viacom and CBS merged in December 2019.

After months of talks about a deal with Skydance, Shari Redstone, Paramount’s controlling shareholder, withdrew the company’s option to merge with Skydance despite few options elsewhere.

The company is still courting deals from Sony, Peacock and Warner Bros. Discovery. However, none of these mergers are currently under serious consideration.

Some of the streaming services are thinking outside the box when it comes to getting their content in front of viewers. For example, last year’s BLACKBERRY was released in theaters as a movie, but a few months later, premiered on AMC as a three-part miniseries. 

“Audiences are different than they used to be,” writer Matt Johnson told Variety. “The film and series are ostensibly telling the same story about the same thing. I look at this as a way for a smaller, independent piece of work to double dip and find its audience. If months from now somebody tells me they saw BLACKBERRY, I’m not going to ask them which version.”

Netflix is also getting creative; the company recently announced Netflix House, “an experiential entertainment venue that will bring some of our most beloved titles to life,” per their website. 

“Building on previous Netflix live experiences for BRIDGERTON, MONEY HEIST, STRANGER THINGS, SQUID GAME, and NETFLIX BITES, Netflix House will go one step further and create an unforgettable venue to explore your favorite Netflix stories and characters beyond the screen year-round,” they continued. “The first two locations will open at King of Prussia in Pennsylvania and Galleria Dallas in 2025.”

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