AMPERAGE Marketing & Fundraising

One-Minute MarketerNiche Is Netflix’s Secret Sauce

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Niche Is Netflix’s Secret Sauce

The internet promised great personalization and targeting. Even though the media lived up to the promise, marketers have fallen far from hitting the mark.

It seems creating niche-centered, targeted messaging to different audience clusters is just too difficult. So one ad is made, popped on Facebook and run until it becomes old.

Netflix is finding a way to develop and engage niche markets: It has identified subsets of its audience and began offering dedicated social channels. These channels include sci-fi, Latinx, LGBTQ+ and parents. Con Todo is a channel for Latinx audiences, The Most is LGBTQ+ and Strong Black Lead is a channel for Black films and TV shows.

You can’t find these efforts on the Netflix app, but on Twitter, Instagram and Reddit, these are mini brands with large audiences. Strong Black Lead has more than 500,000 Instagram followers. NX is a channel for “all things geek” and has an audience of 450,000. Netflix Family on Instagram has 900,000 followers.

These mini brands are strongly connected to their respective audiences. Merchandise encourages audiences to become brand ambassadors. Niche marketing like this comes with reduced competition, increased visibility, enhanced audience relationships and increased sharing within the groups.

Netflix is creating social communities so it can deliver messages in an authentic way. These mini brands will build and may become full-fledged brands on their own.

In the end, this is fulfilling the promise of the internet for greater personalization instead of sending one voice to many audiences. It is branding with the point of view of the cow, not the branding iron.

Mark Mathis III is chief creative & strategy officer, partner and cofounder of AMPERAGE Marketing & Fundraising.

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Mark wrote his first direct-mail fundraising letter in 1981 for the University of Iowa Center for Advancement. The effort raised a few million dollars in undiscovered wills and legacy gifts. From that day forward Mark discovered a love of the big idea that moves the needle.

With that kind of experience, after working at KWWL for 12 years, Mark became one of the founding partners of ME&V and, subsequently, AMPERAGE. Today, he leads the AMPERAGE creative teams, including video production, graphic design, public relations, writing and web development.

He is creatively ambidextrous — son of an artist and engineer — and famous for distilling complex ideas down to a few words and a few visuals. Mark is a writer. When he found that many nonprofits struggled with complex branding puzzles, he wrote the book, “NonProfit-NonMarketing .” He also wrote a novel called “Reenactment.”

Mark is an active blogger OneMinuteMarketer® with nearly 1,000 readers each week on LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter. One of his most popular YouTube videos is on “How to Look Good on Zoom.”

One of Mark’s fondest business memories was being named to INC 500 two times and attending the INC 500 conference with other winners. Mark is considered by some a Civil War expert (and that explains his novel). Mark also served as an adjunct professor in the business and in the communications departments at Wartburg College.

Mark is a graduate of the University of Iowa and is currently vice president of the University of Iowa Journalism and Mass Communications Advisory Board.

Mark is married to state Sen. Liz Mathis, and the two love to travel, even when it means being trapped by a volcano in the Czech Republic for three weeks.