Or #Netflix, PLEASE Buy These People and Put Them Out of Our Misery!

Here comes the weekend. And with it, a looming sense of dread. That’s because I know we’re going to try and use our #moviepass again.

The kludgy, userproof process of purchasing two tickets on a busy weekend night is unenjoyable enough to make coughing up 13 bucks seem like the better lifechoice.

It combines the worst elements of the bus station (wandering people, noise, uncertainty, the smell of 12-hour-old rollerfood) with using one of those ATMs you find in stop-n-robs in a really bad part of town, where the ATM dispenses a chit that you take up to the bullet-proof glass window and exchange for your cash.

It could have, should have, been so much better.

My prediction:

1) Netflix purchases MoviePass’s IP and users, probably before the end of the year. They substantially rework the greasy fiddly bits of MoviePass to work more like Fandango, and eliminate the multi-step checkin/selection/kiosk square dance that’s currently choking theater lobbies with frustrated and confused movie fans.

2) #NFLX and the studios negotiate a tiered distribution schedule that pays studios and theaters at different rates for Opening Weekend, First-Run,
and Ending Soon. 

3) NFLX re-tools the entire thing and relaunches it as Netflix Premiere. Moves the price point to 24.99/mo. (just short of double the current of a Premium subscription.)  For you money, you get:

– The existing level of Netflix service

-1 Opening Weekend Movie per month.

-1 First-Run Movie per week

– 1 Ending Soon per day

4) Movie studios and theaters love it because they don’t have to take the outsized hit on Opening Weekend movies from MoviePass users. They put additional butts in seats (and sell popcorns and cokes) for movies that the public may see as being on the cusp of rolling out and decide to stay home, waiting for the movie to hit the streaming service. It’s a stepped approach to movie revenues based on making money from multiple stops along the Long Tail.

Plus, they gain even more access to the enormous trove of data that Natflix already collects. It allows everyone who sells someone to a moviegoer new touch points along the user’s journey, beginning months out from a big-budget debut.  Multiple relevant promotions. Remarketing opportunities. Couponing and so many others.

5) Subscribers love it because it fixes the crackhouse mattress fire that the current MoviePass forces its users to be a part of. It eliminates the frankenexperience of weird location-aware apps, payment cards, touchscreen kiosks and fistfulls of thermal paper tickets.  Apple Pay, Amazon, Fandango and hundreds of others have taught us that if you have your phone, you should be able to tap to pay.

6) Netflix and its shareholders love it because it captures incremental revenue from subscriber and, most importantly, increases the Lifetime Customer Value of every subscription by capturing multiple portions of that consumer’s entertainment dollar.

Everyone wins. But consumers, it seems, win more.

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*Yes, “borken.”  I’m trying to get found in more tumblr searches and not at all above using a #pandertag or two. Hey, at least I didn’t include anything like #cutekittyGIF, right?