- Getty/Scott Olson
Since Netflix dived into original content in 2013, it has artfully spread the legend of its own data advantage.
Netflix CEO Reed Hastings has called Netflix a data machine, one that crunches every second of Netflix you have ever watched, and then crafts TV shows exactly the way you want them.
That’s one reason Netflix doesn’t need pilots, the story goes. It just knows what will be a hit.
This thinking has recently been questioned by Wall Street analysts, who don’t buy that Netflix is any better at picking shows than traditional networks.
“Netflix is like any other network, with hits and misses, and we do not expect its data advantage to provide it with a better batting average,” analysts from Morgan Stanley wrote in a note.
But is that true?
Exstreamist’s Rob Toledo looked at data from the reviews-website Rotten Tomatoes, from 2013 to the present, to see how Netflix stacked up against more established players.
Here’s what he found:
The king of content picking, at least in terms of quality, is HBO by a wide margin. But Netflix sits considerably higher than the major networks. Floundering NBC, which has had well-documented troubles picking hit shows in recent years, is particularly far behind.
Of course Netflix has different constraints on its production compared to major networks. And, like HBO, it doesn’t have to worry about not being able to sell advertising space next to a controversial show.
But it’s also important to note that Netflix has been producing original content only since 2013. It’s a young player in this market, and this chart shows how much success it has already found.