David Carr from the New York Times wrote a great article this week on how, with House of Cards, Netflix used its mountain of viewer data to give the viewers exactly what they wanted.
Over the years, Netflix has built a proprietary database on what shows its 33 million viewers watch, when they watch them, whether they watch them all the way through, and whether they like them.
Most of the focus with House of Cards is the fact that the show is being released online and all-at-once. What’s more interesting to me it that Netflix knew ahead of time that “House of Cards” would be a hit (full disclosure: Netflix hasn’t released numbers on how many people have watched the show, so we don’t know for sure if it’s a hit. But it’s already the most-watched show on Netflix).
(In his 2008 book Super Crunchers, Ian Ayres looked at how a group of Hollywood outsiders was using using data and Moneyball-style statistics to predict which movies would be blockbusters.)
Netflix is in the unique position now of owning the viewer data and the distribution. It’s like if CBS was the only network with access to Nielsen ratings. Stay tuned. This is going to get interesting.
Big news! Shannon, Maverick, and I moved to Irvine, CA, and I am starting a new career on Monday as a management consultant at Insigniam.
You Might Be Wondering Who Insigniam Is and What They Do
Insigniam is the global management consulting firm co-founded by my dad thirty years ago. One-third of the Fortune 50 are their clients.
In a nutshell, executives turn to Insigniam when they have a strategic imperative that is at-risk or a mandate to produce results that are unprecedented.
Insigniam helps businesses produce breakthrough results in the areas of performance, strategy, innovation, leadership, and culture. For example, they helped a Fortune 100 company double the productivity of their R&D and permanently reduce development cycle times by 27%.
We’re Moving to the Beach!
We are all excited about moving closer to the beach (Maverick loves swimming in the ocean), and I am excited about embarking on a new career.
We will miss living near all of our friends and family in Las Vegas, but we are expecting to have lots of visitors in the guest bedroom in our new home.
California, here I come (right back where I started from)!
Use the rule of thirds for better photos.
The folks at Instagram have some great tips for taking better photos on your iPhone with iOS 5:
Instagram Blog: iPhone Photo Tips: iOS 5 and the Rule of Thirds
More than 250 hours. That’s how much time I spend alone in my car every year commuting to work.
If, like me, you get bored on your commute, check out Audible.
They have tons of great audiobooks and magazines to download onto your iPhone. I get the Gold subscription every year.
Use better salt.
Like many people, when I first began cooking, I used table salt. Big mistake.
Now I use either kosher salt or sea salt. They cost a dollar or two more, but they’re worth it. Both kosher salt and sea salt have less sodium and make food taste much better than table salt.
Switch. Now. You’ll be amazed how many things (steak, pork, chicken, carrots, leeks, sweet potatoes) taste great with a little olive oil, kosher salt, and fresh cracked pepper.
When I find something inspiring, or something that strikes me, or something worth remembering, I post it on my tumblr. Check it out.