CivicScience | Majority of Netflix Subscribers Said Ads Would Impact Their Subscriptions

Media & Entertainment

Majority of Netflix Subscribers Said Ads Would Impact Their Subscriptions

Image Credit: Photo by Thibault Penin on Unsplash

The vicious streaming war continues as analysts predict Netflix needs to make some changes to avoid major losses. One recommendation was a lower cost subscription option supported by ad revenue.

While Netflix said it won’t add ads to its platform, just how much change might the company see if it followed through with this kind of pricing strategy?

According to CivicScience data, only 12% of Netflix subscribers in the U.S. seem to be unphased by the prospect of a subscription option with ads. But the remaining 87% are a different story. Half of that group was quick to say they would cancel their subscription while the other half would wait to see how ads impacted the viewing experience first.

Eighty-seven percent is a great enough sum of wary Netflix subscribers that the streaming platform should tread carefully. 

Another reason to tread carefully is that 73% of the Gen Pop – so subscribers as well as non-subscribers – said they were uninterested in a lower-cost, ad-populated viewing experience.

Who Is Interested in a Lower-Cost Netflix Subscription?

There are Netflix subscribers who like the idea of a lower-cost subscription, even with ads. They mostly show up in the data as people who don’t appear to be bothered by ads – they said either ads wouldn’t impact their subscription, or they wouldn’t cancel right away but wait to see how much the ads interfered with the experience. But some of the highest levels of interest came from non-Netflix members, of whom 54% said they would be interested in subscribing to a cheaper, ad-supported Netflix.

In addition, interested people are more likely to believe Netflix – over Amazon Prime Video and Hulu – has the best original content. Members and non-members of Netflix agree on this point, making up 53% of the people interested in subscribing to Netflix with ads.

Social media influence also seems to be an indicator of interest in a cheaper Netflix subscription. People who were more likely to make purchases influenced by social media make up 33% of those interested in paying less for Netflix content.

And another correlation appeared around music streaming habits. Those who stream music with ads, and therefore don’t pay a monthly fee, were also more likely to express interest in an ad-supported Netflix that costs less.

Despite the skepticism from current Netflix users, a lower-cost option with ads does carry some appeal, especially among users who would wait to see what an ad-populated experience would look like before making any decisions; or from users who currently pay for Netflix content.

While Netflix said no to ads on its platform, it seems like there are actually some interested parties who might either keep their subscription – at a lower cost – or become a new user. One fact remains true across the data: Netflix’s original content is seen as some of the best, so it’s possible that even if Netflix were to undergo some changes, it’s still going to have some extremely loyal customers.

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