Driving Content - Entertainment Media Case Studies
Some major brands in the US entertainment media sector that are using content to drive subscriptions to their services are Hulu and Amazon Prime Video. More information on the topic has been presented below.
- According to a case study by Media Kix, Hulu is the world's third-largest streaming service in terms of the number of subscribers. It is right behind Netflix and Amazon.
- Some of the ways Hulu uses to execute content marketing to drive more subscriptions includes influencer marketing, social media marketing campaigns along with traditional content marketing, and Google Adwords.
1. INFLUENCER MARKETING
- Although Hulu has a very less number of followers on Instagram when compared to Netflix, Hulu takes the help of mid-tier to high-influence influencers to promote their services on Instagram.
- Through this campaign, the company wants to attract more subscribers to their live streaming services (mainly sports). The influencers promote Hulu's content on Instagram through multiple sports-related video content with a hashtag (#HuluSellsout).
- The campaign began with "NBA stars Damian Lillard, Joel Embiid, and Giannis Antetokounmpo." They were the first influencers for the campaign.
- Other hashtags used to promote the content on Instagram are '#HuluHasLiveSports' and '#HuluHasLiveSportsChallenge.'
- Other hashtags used to promote the content other than sports include '#HuluHasAllTheStars' and '#HuluHasTheStars.'
2. SOCIAL MEDIA MARKETING AND TRADITIONAL MARKETING
- Hulu uses different features of the social media channels, such as Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter, to promote their content and reach a lot of people to drive subscriptions.
- For example, Hulu launched its largest marketing campaign to promote "its first exclusively acquired film — The Beatles: Eight Days a Week—The Touring Years." Video content was the main element of this content marketing campaign.
- As a part of this campaign, Sting shared the moment when he first heard The Beatles "during the opening of a tribute concert to The Beatles" through a YouTube video. Thereafter, Hulu collaborated with Movie Pilot to promote the movie through social media campaigns, movie screenings, and concerts.
- All the content from the campaign was uploaded to social media under the hashtag '#BecauseTheBeatles', along with many live broadcasts from the concerts.
- Hulu also uses traditional content marketing methods, such as posters, promos, and trailers, to promote its services.
3. GOOGLE ADWORDS AND PRESS RELEASES
- According to a case study on Content Writers, Hulu relies heavily "on Google AdWords campaigns to ensure that its search results come up first in search rankings for its related keywords like streaming TV."
- The company uses ad copy in order to promote its current offerings.
- Hulu also uses press releases to let customers know about the new viewing in the company and to keep themselves in the media spotlight. They also advertise their new features through press releases.
SUCCESS METRICS AND RESULTS FOR HULU
- The content marketing campaigns had a significant role in increasing the number of subscribers by 8 million in 2018.
- The influencer marketing campaign targeted 17.1 million people through influencers. The campaign received 1.4 million likes, 10 thousand comments, 5.1 million views, and a 5.71% engagement rate in total.
- According to Movie Pilot, the '#BecauseTheBeatles' campaign "reached 4.8 million people, and drew around 400,000 views with 14,000 total engagements — all of which was effective in drawing a younger audience."
- In total, the social highlights of the '#BecauseTheBeatles' campaign "included 112 posts across 12 different Movie Pilot and Hulu channels, which resulted in a reach of 13.7 million people, 2.6 million video views and 106,000 total engagements. "
AMAZON PRIME VIDEO
- Amazon Prime Video is the second-largest video streaming service in the world in terms of the number of subscribers. Only Netflix has more subscribers than Amazon Prime Video.
- The different ways that Amazon Prime Video uses to execute content marketing to drive more subscriptions are creating custom video content for fans, collaborating with Buzzfeed to promote video content, showing the clips of the original shows at movie screenings, using social media like Twitter, and promoting the 'Great Shows Stay With You' campaign.
1. CREATING CUSTOM VIDEO CONTENT FOR FANS AND COLLABORATING WITH BUZZFEED
- Amazon Prime Video uses custom video content for fans to promote different shows on the streaming service. They tailor the videos as per the preference of their audience and try to drive subscriptions to their services.
- For example, in 2017, Amazon Prime Video promoted the second season of 'The Grand Tour' by creating custom video content for the fans, targeting older as well as the younger male audience.
- The Grand Tour developed a custom video content for the fans in the Slo-Mo Guys fan pages that challenged them to "send different cars flying using a wrecking ball." The fan page had 10 million fans.
- Amazon Prime Video teamed up with Buzzfeed to "develop a three-part video series called 'The Sh*tty Grand Tour,' in which the stars of The Try Guys, a comedy video series from Buzzfeed, took on different challenges from the show and compete for the championship." Each video content in the series included a monologue that promoted Prime Video.
2. SHOWING ORIGINAL CLIPS OF THE SHOWS AT MOVIE SCREENINGS AND LIVE EVENTS
- Amazon Prime Video also promoted its video content from The Grand Tour by sponsoring a drone racing league and showing the clips from the show during the live streaming of the event. They targeted everyone at the event as potential subscribers.
- Amazon Prime Video also recreated the "classic American drive-in booth" to host movie screening and car shows.
- During these events, they marketed their video content by showing the clips from the shows at screenings of classic movies, such as 'The Italian Job.'
3. SOCIAL MEDIA MARKETING
- Amazon's Twitter campaigns are more focused on promoting Prime Video and Amazon Music. Amazon Prime Video has its own Twitter page focused solely on the US.
- The Twitter page promotes the content from the current popular shows using the images, clips, and hashtags. For example, the Twitter page is promoting the content from the Thursday Night Football (TNF) show right now.
- While Amazon drives its 3.1 million Twitter followers towards Prime Video, Amazon Prime Video US drives its 1.3 million followers towards Prime Video.
4. GREAT SHOWS STAY WITH YOU CAMPAIGN
- Amazon Prime Video's latest content marketing efforts include the 'Great Shows Stay With You' campaign.
- In this campaign, the stories of real people whose lives were changed after watching an Amazon Prime Video show are shown in a series of videos.
- The video contents show people at their weakest point and how the shows empowered them.
- This strategy has been reported to be working by Amazon as they have continued this strategy from 2018-2019.
- The series is primarily focused on European countries like the UK and Germany. However, it is also available for the US audience to watch online.
SUCCESS METRICS AND RESULTS FOR AMAZON PRIME VIDEO
- One of the major goals of Amazon Prime Video shows is to attract more subscribers towards the Prime shopping club. Due to proper content marketing, Amazon's top television shows drew more "than 5 million people worldwide to its Prime shopping club by early 2017, according to company documents, revealing for the first time how the retailer’s bet on original video is paying off."
- The popular drama 'The Man in the High Castle' brought in 1.15 million new subscribers to Amazon as a result of proper content marketing.
- Amazon Prime Originals was able to bring in roughly one-quarter of the total Prime subscribers from 2014-2017.
- While there were about 26 million US subscribers of Amazon Prime Video in 2017, they were able to reach a milestone of 40 million US subscribers in 2018 due to proper content marketing.
We started the research by searching for some major brands in the US entertainment media sector. Based on the number of subscribers and the size of the companies, we were able to find the top entertainment media companies in the US, such as Netflix, Disney, Hulu, Amazon Prime Video, Warner Bros, Fox Studios, and more. We were able to identify the companies from different credible databases, such as Forbes and TomsGuide. We searched for the case studies of the listed brands to see how they are using content to drive subscriptions to their respective services. Thereafter, we filtered out the companies that did not provide subscription services. We were able to find the case studies for Amazon Prime Video and Hulu by using this strategy.
We first tried to find a single case study containing all the required information (three ways they use content marketing and success metrics) for both brands. On researching multiple case studies related to the topic for both brands on databases, such as Market Realist, Content Writers, Hulu, and more, we found that all the required information was not available in a single case study but were available across multiple case studies and reports. Therefore, we looked into multiple case studies and reports related to the topic for each brand, corroborated the available information to check the credibility, and then extracted the information required for this research. In order to provide more examples to show how Hulu has used content marketing, we have used one source from 2016 in this research. In this way, we were able to complete the research and provide all the required findings.