I, like many Canadians, am frustrated with my Netflix experience. I so want internet streaming media to my non-cable TV.
But alas, aside from a good selection of documentaries, there is a lot of dated movies, questionable rating systems, stuttering issues with movies that can’t receive, and even one movie with no sound.
I suspected many Canadian customers are also ‘early adopter’ techie types (or at the very least – gamers) and perhaps vocal about their experiences.
So I decided to check out what kind of conversation is taking place for Netflix in Canada. If you review past comments, you will notice the f-word and suck. Wow.. that’s powerful. Now – to be fair to Netflix, it takes a long time to dig into negative conversations, time I haven’t spent beyond a glance. There is some misattribution, some of the issues appear to do with Microsoft Xbox setup challenges and not Netflix, but many ‘suck’ comments are related to Netflix, versus films watched.
If you check out Netflix Canada’s facebook page, with 6700+ likes, fan comments on the wall seem disabled and discussion boards are free of Netflix contributions. The wall itself broadcasts announcements and pretends to engage.
Twitter is misleading. Netflix has been mentioned over many times in Twitter, in the last six months, in Canada, but has only tweeted 219 times. There is another address @netflixhelps which has been responding to some @netflix_CA tweets but not all. It feels like a missed opportunity.
What is interesting is that I see a number of Canadians asking Netflix to improve, like a coach at the side of the game. They want Netflix to succeed in Canada. Perhaps there is still a window to win back frustrated clients?
oh, Netflix. I want so badly to give you my business, but you just won’t let me.
@Netflix Please stop sucking!
Contrast this to Netflix’s statements, available publicly on Linkedin:
In Q3 2010, Netflix began international expansion with the launch of a streaming-only Netflix service in Canada. Early Canadian results are encouraging, and Netflix is tracking to be profitable in Canada late in 2011. If we continue to gain confidence in a large return on our Canadian investment, and we have confidence in the financial return on further geographic expansion, then we will look to grow beyond the U.S. and Canada in the second half of 2011. Our overarching objectives are to continue to delight our American and Canadian members, grow our member base in the U.S. and Canada and to do the same around the world. [quoted from a Linkedin Description of the Director of Global Acquisition Project Management position, Aug. 2011]
It can’t be helpful to launch a questionable service, catch trial, but then suffer churn and angry ex-customers.
I too want Netflix to succeed in Canada, very much so. At bare minimum, just engage! Tell your story, your constraints and give hope. Start a blog, become authentic, hire a Canadian to manage expansion. I don’t doubt that there are significant barriers entering this market that are likely responsible for selection and other issues – and yet, there is a tremendous opportunity for engagement. This should be such an exciting time.
What are you thoughts? How does a company be open about market entry issues in this age of social web?
Author’s note: I’ve altered this post a little since publishing within last 24 hours. My intent is not to slam a promising entry (I want Netflix to succeed), but to offer publicly available information and suggest investment in engaging with Canadians.