Online Marketing

4.88 Million Reasons You Need to Market Like Netflix and Amazon

netflix and amazon marketing
Written by Josh Rueff

4.88 million reasons, and just as many tears.

I’ve never seen so much marketing revenue.

At least not that fast.

Of course, it was built off of a long term marketing foundation.

That foundation was spawned from true greatness — passion for the wellbeing of others.

This question is the start:

Do you truly and deeply want people to succeed?

As content marketers and entrepreneurs, we need to be true to who we are at our core — and enjoy the amazing things that happen as a result.

When you peel back all the harsh, westernized, cutthroat business layers, what do you get to?

I’m willing to bet that under those layers you want nothing but the best for the people you provide service and/or products for.

If I’m wrong, trust me, you’re more wrong, and you need to go away. The world doesn’t need people like you.

wait for it...


You’re still here, so I guess I was right — you’re one of those marketers who actually care about people.

My involvement in the big picture of the Netflix and Amazon marketing consultation was so minimal that I had to scrounge up the details from…

…well honestly, the people who were more important than me in the process. (Hey, I was young. Not everybody gets to be a rose-scented, prodigy-marketing-Mozart like Mark Zuckerberg or  Elizabeth Holmes.)

But when I started putting the pieces together, I watched this brilliant marketing masterpiece unfold like a map before my eyes.

And it’s become my marketing vision.

I have a dream that has very little to do with civil rights.

It’s much more about marketing wrongs, and righting those wrongs by writing you the right marketing methods.

 Because a marketer without vision will fall flat, and will be weighed and found wanting.

 As a professional content marketer, you need to see the market around you, and you need to see it better than anyone.

 It’s our job for crying out loud.

We all love the internet because it’s fast, effectively free information — but here’s my hang up.

The vast majority of content marketing advice on the internet is crap.

Smelly, putrid, void-of-nutrients feces that shouldn’t even show up on your radar, let alone be ingested and regurgitated as “quality” marketing advice for your clients.

Does that disgust you? Good. It should.

Because your clients deserve better, and so do you.

Enough of the blind leading the blind.

Let’s make our marketing vision crystal clear, by watching the latest marketing trends and observing billion dollar marketing teams as they respond to those trends.

Your Content Marketing Vision

There’s 7 visions EVERY world class content marketer pursues like a bloodhound/bat hybrid out of hell:

1.  Customer relationship and loyalty

2. Regular (and incrementally personal) customer interaction

3. Brand awareness

4. Sales

5. Customer evangelism (word of mouth)

6. Lead generation and nurturing

7. Upselling and cross-selling.


Content marketing is the most dynamic strain of marketing. To keep up with this lightening-fast evolution, we’re going to note the changes in each of the above categories, and again, watch how the big dogs respond.

That’s how we leverage the billions these world class marketing teams have at their disposal, for no cost to us whatsoever.

Customer Relationship and Loyalty

customer loyalty

There’s two massive trends that are rapidly rising in this arena.

 The first is getting personal.

As the line between social media and direct marketing blur, the “up close and personal” nature of social media is bleeding into the persuasive art of direct response.

The result?

Mass marketing will be virtually obsolete in a matter of years.

Commercials are still relevant for brand exposure, but how long will traditional television last in the upcoming millennial generation?

This is the generation, by the way, that has a (resoundingly realistic) expectation of interruption-free media for next to no cost whatsoever. (That is, Netflix, Amazon Prime, Hulu, etc.)

But that’s a massive can of worms we don’t need to wade into right now.

Dr. John Knight at Hand Wrist Doc reports that his patients “respond much better to the highly-personalized content our website now offers, as opposed to the generic site copy we invested in just a few years back”, and this discovery is far from unique to his practice.

Thanks to highly sophisticated social media insights and marketing measurement tools, we now have the ability to talk with our customers one on one, with the intimacy and understanding of an acquaintance, if not a friend.

 The second customer retention and loyalty trend is enhanced local marketing.

Google — our content marketing prediction behemoth — has announced their dedication to appealing to mobile users, and this year we’ll see a marked increase in local marketing as a result.

Your content needs to be created with mobile viewing at the forefront of your mind.

Because our customers will be browsing our content on mobile devices while they’re out shopping, waiting in traffic, riding the bus, or eating lunch.

The end product has to be uniquely personalized and targeted to local customers.

Let’s take a look at how Netflix and Amazon are responding to these trends.

Netflix’s success has been built off of personalized, local marketing since day one.

Screen Shot 2015-05-08 at 11.31.29 AM

However, they’ve recently gotten even better at it:

Netflix told investors that they would begin refocusing their promotional marketing, from the price and service itself to Netflix original programs like House of Cards,  Scrotal Recall, and Bloodline.


Because of the customer data Nielsen is pulling in for them.

Even more fascinating than the why is the what — that is, the cold, hard cash at the bottom of the profit line (here’s your 4.8 million reasons):


Data from The Wall Street Journal.

This is our takeaway.

Both Netflix and Amazon Prime use Nielsen to collect and provide insight into their consumer data. We have to do the same to get world class results. Either

a) hire Nielsen,

b) hire a company like Nielsen, or

c) do the same thing Nielsen does in house.

Here’s what they do to measure consumer activity :

Nielsen Marketing Method (2)

Data from Nielsen.

Don’t have the dough to keep up with Amazon?

Me either.

Looks like we’re stuck with the free in-house version. Aw. Sad kittens.


Okay I’m over it — here’s the cheaper versions of Nielsen marketing data:

50 Economical Electronic Meters That Measure Social Engagement

Let’s start with free, because who doesn’t like free?

  1. BackTweets (Free) | Track the people who are talking about you, count them and hear what they’re saying.
  2. Icerocket (Free) | This one is all about brand monitoring. Kind of like bugging the wild west of the world wide webernet and everyone in it.
  3. Klout (Free) | Klout finds the influencers in your audience; the ones with clout, so you can persuade them to become evangelists for your brand.
  4. Mention (Free to $) | This real time data app enables you to create alerts for your business.
  5. Netvibes (Free and $) | Tracks clients, customers, AND competitors. And a whole lot more.
  6. Pinpuff (Free) |Pretty much Klout for Pinterest.
  7. Pinterest Web Analytics (Free) | Pinterest’s built-in analytics. It works. Very social data visualization
  8. (Free) | Manage and tweet from multiple accounts.
  9. Social Mention (Free) | Real-time social media search and analysis.
  10. HootSuite (Free and $) | Social media management system, audience identifier, custom report generator, etc. The free version is worth it, but I’ve never paid for the extra perks.
  11. Facebook Insights (Free) | Facebook’s built-in metrics gives you the ability to spot the trends within user growth and demographics.
  12. TweetBeep (Free and $) | Essentially Google Alerts for Twitter. Choose your keywords and get daily search results via email. Very awesome tool.
  13. TweetDeck (Free) | Like HootSuite but better in my opinion. Some people prefer Hootsuite though. Worth trying them both really.
  14. Google Alerts (Free) | Email updates of the latest relevant Google results you ask for. Very helpful when used correctly.

Budget Friendly Customer Engagement Trackers:

  1. SDL ($) | Marketing analytics, campaign management, and social media management.
  2. Argyle Social ($) | Solid tool for identifying and engaging with your leads, as well as gaining new ones.
  3. BlitzMetrics ($) | “All of the above” social media dashboard — this powerhouse lets you monitor Twitter, Facebook, YouTube, Instagram, Tumblr, and more. You can even keep an eye on your competitors and compare your results against their’s!
  4. PinReach ($) | Measures your Pinterest influence.
  5. NetBase ($)| This social intelligence platform enables you to monitor, engage, and publish updates.
  6. Bottlenose ($) | Live social intelligence.We use this to search, monitor, analyze, target, and engage in real time. And all in one conveniently centralized location. Very worth the money if you have it.
  7. Brandwatch ($) |What are people saying about your brands and products? What about your competitor’s brand and products? This’ll help you track exactly data visualization
  8. Buffer (Free and $) | Manages multiple accounts — Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn.
  9. Buzz Equity ($) | Listen to social media conversations in real time.
  10. CARMA ($) | Evaluate your online persona, social media image, brand recognition, and a whole heck of a lot more.
  11. Collective Intellect ($) | An Oracle platform that helps you capture millions of conversations — every day.
  12. Crimson Hexagon ($) | More listening tools.
  13. Curalate ($) | This tool helps you analyze Instagram and Pinterest.
  14. NUVI ($) | Real-time display of conversations, and the ability to communicate with your brand evangelists in real visualization social media marketing
  15. CustomScoop ($) | Listen to social conversations, watch your competition, and receive daily reports.
  16. CyberAlert ($) | Keep your eye on over 100,000 customer-generated media sites for word of mouth.
  17. MarketMeSuite ($) | Used to market multiple social profiles, schedule messages, and more.
  18. MediaMiser ($) | This app collects and analyzes relevant content about your brand, and also helps you spot trends in media coverage.
  19. MediaVantage ($) | Measure social media mentions and more.
  20. Meltwater ($) | Melt your competition by monitoring your web presence and relationships, and also by analyzing your social engagement.
  21. Fliptop ($) | This customer intelligence platform is actually remarkably media marketing customer data
  22. Gorkana ($) | This tool searches through and filters conversations.
  23. Social Response ($) | Helps you build dynamic Facebook fan pages and communicate with your followers efficiently — one on one.
  24. Sprout Social ($) | Monitors Twitter, Facebook Pages, LinkedIn, FourSquare, Gowalla, etc. I’ve never tried this one, but I keep hearing good things about it.
  25. SWIX Analytics ($) | Tracks 75 social media metrics in one dashboard, enabling you to measure your social media influence.
  26. Synthesio ($) | More for large enterprises really, but if that’s you, go for it!
  27. Sysomos ($) | More real-time monitoring woo! data marketing
  28. Talkwalker ($) | Monitor your brand, reputation, and even your competitors.
  29. Topsy ($) | Watch your tweets, websites, blogs, and social networks.
  30. Trackur Apparently an awesome service. I know nothing more than that.
  31. Twitalyzer Twitter metrics that analyze followers, mentions, retweets, and influencers, and somewhat creepily, even their locations.
  32. UberVU ($) | Major social media platform monitoring — real time and versatile audience engagement.
  33. Visible ($) | Monitor, analyze, and engage in social media conversations.
  34. Vocus ($) | Intuitive platform for cloud marketing and analytics.
  35. Shoutlet ($) | Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Foursquare, and YouTube. Integrates workflow tools and task assignments.
  36. Social Marketing Cloud ($) | A is for automation. This solution enables you to monitor and analyze pretty much everything — while you sleep.

This is all just an itty bitty scratch on the tip of the iceberg.

We have so much more to cover, including (but not limited to):

 In-home scanners to collect valuable consumer data

 Scanner based sales and causal information from retail

 Why I cried like a little girl when I saw the results of altruistic marketing methods paired with more profit than I would have ever imagined (I wasn’t the only one).

 Regular (and incrementally personal) customer interaction

 Brand awareness


 Customer evangelism (word of mouth)

 Lead generation and nurturing

 Upselling and cross-selling.

 Examples in each of the above categories, from Netflix and Amazon

I (almost desperately) hope you don’t miss the next chapter of this content marketing series, because it’s the best marketing advice I’ve ever received — and now given.  


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About the author

Josh Rueff

Josh Rueff is a digital marketer, copywriter, minimalist nomad, fisherman, literary nonsense poet, Marine Corps vet, lover of every form of chocolate, and keeper of very large dogs. He believes that specialization is for monkeys and insects. He's recently published a book called Rock Paper Root, and has two other pieces in the works: Minimalist Living in Ancient and Modern Culture, and a children's poetry collection in the writing genre of literary nonsense, Periwinkle Yetis and the Yvinosiop.