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Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Netflix too "Qwik" for Its Own Good

When we signed on to Twitter on Monday we noticed that "Qwikster" is a trending hashtag. So we searched Qwikster online and noted the news that Netflix is breaking the company up into separate DVD-by-mail and streaming units. We had been linked to the DVD side.

Interesting, we thought, so we monitored the Twitter feeds and noticed the following: The twitter handle @qwikster had over 1,800 followers at 1PM and by 4PM it had over 2,700 followers. Yet it only had 19 tweets. Hmmmm. Normally this would be a good thing…right? It would be a good thing if was actually owned by Netflix!

Further investigation took us to a Smart Briefs article reporting that Netflix apparently did not do their research before launching their new "Qwikster" product to the media. The @qwikster handle is not owned by Netflix; in fact tweet topics range from dish about ex-girlfriends to drug use. Not exactly the image Netflix is likely seeking as it navigates an increasingly competitive marketplace for on-demand video content. (It turns out the @qwikster Twitter handle is owned by a teenager, who now has just under 10,000 followers as of Tuesday morning).

This harkens to what we at CommCore always remind our clients, whether they are engaging in social media, the mainstream media, or live audiences -- the importance of simple due diligence before engaging in any outreach. A simple search would have saved Netflix a lot of embarrassment.

How would you counsel Netflix to proceed from this juncture? Have you or your clients faced any similar situations, and how were they resolved?

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