Three reasons why we should all use big data the way Netflix does

At Netflix, absolutely everything that can be measured is measured. From what colours make us click on a show we’ve never heard of, to what level of violence makes us decide we’ve had enough. Netflix knows us because it knows our clicking habits. That level of in-depth data may be beyond most of our small businesses, but there’s still a lot we can learn from the big data giant.

Get as personal as possible

Netflix knows how to greet me. It shows me a selection of the finest teen dramas from today and decades ago because, for all my sins, that’s what I want to watch. Without Netflix, I would have to research where my next fix of exaggerated drama would come from but luckily for me that isn’t the case.

Big data lets Netflix know its audience by name, taste and habit. It knows what will keep us clicking and what will make us drift away to a rival. That’s what you need to do. Find a way to personalise what you offer. From targeted emails, to in-depth consumer habits, show your audience you know them by putting what they like at the front of their experience with you.

Know what your customers want

Netflix’s data-bods start working long before a product reaches its homepage. Netflix knows who we will watch and what will make us turn off the screen. It ordered two series of House of Cards without batting an eyelid because it knew Kevin Spacey plus political drama equalled something we would be glued too.

When you’re creating anything from a piece of content to a new product your audience needs to be the first thing you think of. Do they want you to inform or entertain them? Should your new product make life easier, or make it look better? Does one colour sell better than any other? If you know these answers, you’ll go through every new release with the confidence you’re looking for.

Change everything 

Netflix isn’t stubborn. If the data shows no one watches a show, it’s gone from the homepage. If we don’t want to see an actor on our screens, he won’t be in a Netflix show. If a genre once made us stick around for hours on end, but now makes us quit, it’s going to lose focus.

Take the time to use software like ClickTail and discover where customers are leaving your website. Knowing what stops someone buying from you is the quickest way to increase your sales. If you’ve never done it before, chances are you’ll see there are too many steps between someone seeing something they like, and spending money on it. Cut those steps down as much as possible!


Have you ever used data to increase sales? What software did you use? Let everyone know in the comments below.


We use cookies to create the most secure and effective website possible for our customers. Full details can be found here