SEOUL, Jul. 27 (Korea Bizwire) — A new industry report claims that streaming service Netflix failed to take advantage of its original film ‘Okja’ in South Korea despite the hype for the star-dusted cast and high-profile film director Bong Joon-ho, as subscription figures have plunged only days after the movie was released.
The report released on Thursday by Nielsen Korea was based on PC and mobile behavioral data and revealed the number of visitors to the online streaming service rose steadily during the month of June, peaking at 739,000 soon before the film Okja was released, only to halve three days after the film’s release.
“As the number of visitors to Netflix’s website doesn’t equal actual subscribers, it’s been understood that people have used Netflix only to watch Okja,” Nielsen Korea said.
According to Nielsen Korea’s analysis of the data on social media, most of the buzz created on the internet over the movie was associated with questions like ‘how to watch for free’, further proving the point that many South Koreans see Netflix as a mere tool to watch content for free during the free trial month.
One industry source argues that even though Netflix has made an effort to add more South Korean content, it’s hard to say the streaming service has done enough to appeal to South Korean consumers.
“With many other over-the-top content providers that offer South Korean drama and entertainment content at a cheaper price, it won’t be easy for Netflix to compete in terms of price,” the source said.
However, Netflix has hit back at its critics, with one official saying, “During the second quarter, 5.2 million new subscribers joined our service, many of whom were outside the U.S., and we believe Okja played a role to a degree.”