Netflix Fired Some of Its Employees Amid Marketing Overhaul

A shakeup at Netflix has resulted in a round of layoffs. The streaming service is apparently revamping its marketing strategy, and according to The Hollywood Reporter, it'll shift its advertising focus to the service itself, rather than individual campaigns for original content. Sources close to the matter say that 15 people or more could be out of a job due to the overhaul.

The changes are reportedly coming from its new chief marketing officer, Jackie Lee-Joe, who believes that Netflix over-hired its marketing department and wants to restructure the roughly $2 billion it spends annually in advertising in a more efficient way.

Details are still being worked, though the new strategy comes in a time when there are more high-profile streaming services than ever to choose from, with even more on the way. So, rather than pushing its A-list ensemble movies or award-winning series, it seems that this is a push to stay on top of the streaming game in the wake of Disney+, as well as HBO Max, Peacock and Quibi all slated to launch this calendar year.

Given that Netflix has acquired an impressive roster of talent from Hollywood over the years, (two Best Picture nominees this year were Netflix movies), it'll be interesting to see if the change in marketing will have an adverse effect.

This is the second big change that's come to the streaming platform in recent weeks. In its fourth-quarter earnings call, it completely redid how it measures its viewing metrics. Previously, a "view" was considered when a user watched 70 percent of an episode or movie. Now, its whittled that time down to roughly two minutes.

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"Our new methodology is similar to the BBC iPlayer in their rankings based on 'requests' for the title, 'Most Popular' articles on The New York Times, which include those who opened the articles, and YouTube view counts," the company noted in the same report. "This way, short and long titles are treated equally, leveling the playing field for all types of our content including interactive content, which has no fixed length."

Globally speaking, Netflix saw a 20 percent uptick last quarter, though it hasn't seen that level of growth stateside. In fact, just over half-a-million new subscribers signed up across the U.S. and Canada during the fourth quarter last year.