House of Cards, the political drama starring Kevin Spacey, is the first-ever original series to air on Netflix, has been seen as a success so far, and appears to be one which has had benefits for the American online streaming giant. This formal confirmation came after the company revealed many customers are keeping interest in the site purely because of the original series, unsurprisingly the most-watched show on the unlimited on-demand service at present.
According to Netflix’s ‘chief content officer’ Ted Sarandos, a survey conducted by the company last week claims viewers are stating themselves as less likely to cancel on Netflix subscriptions due to the series, which premiered on 1 February and already confirmed for a renewal to a 13-episode season 2.
The survey revealed that 90% of Netflix users enjoy the fact that episodes of shows are instantly available at their fingertips (with 10% ‘indifferent’), while 86% of users claimed House of Cards‘ presence was ‘less likely’ to make them considering cancellation of their subscription package, with 22.6% of subscribers noting that they canceled their own cable service in preference of Netflix.
Aside from the main question on the show, specific queries on the enjoyment of House of Cards found that 10% of all Netflix viewers have seen at least one episode of the series (the closest that the company will probably get to revealing its ratings), with 19.6% of that group have watched all 13. Rating the show found 36% of viewers to deem it ‘exceptional’, while another 43% termed it ‘good’.
Netflix internal analyst John Blackledge summarised: “If future original programs are as successful as House Of Cards, it likely leads to a stickier subscriber base over time.”
It is believed that the news is extremely helpful reading to company executives, whose gamble on online-exclusive content has clearly paid off with their existing userbase, but will more original content manage to convert some of those that are unconvinced by the service?