There are arguably few industries as cutthroat as the entertainment industry is, with the need to constantly pre-empt and adapt in response to changing consumer tastes presenting a considerable professional challenge for all those working in the sector.
This seems borne out by recent events, with even giants in the entertainment industry such as Netflix recently having experienced considerable turbulence as consumer tastes evolve in new directions. These changing tastes have cost Netflix billions as the streaming giant’s stock price tumbled sharply in recent months.
Netflix’s recent experiences provide valuable lessons for many industries and sectors, particularly as they have changed from being a disruptive young entertainment industry start-up to a legacy giant struggling to maintain their place in an increasingly crowded market.
With this in mind, however, what are some of the lessons to be learned from this and, more broadly, what can businesses learn from entertainment?
Embrace new technologies
Although the entertainment industry seems to be in a relatively healthy place these days, this was not always the case. Even as little as a decade ago, the future of the entertainment industry seemed uncertain in the face of the considerable technological changes that were underway.
This is true across many different entertainment industry sectors, with even the online casino and gambling industry having to embrace technological change to stay afloat. To this end, the best online casinos that payout have also embraced new technologies such as cryptocurrencies to better service changing consumer demand.
Rather than fighting these emerging technological trends, however, the entertainment has instead embraced them. By using these technologies to innovate whatever product they are providing, the entertainment industry has been better able to meet changing consumer tastes.
As such, new technologies such as online streaming have changed from being an existential threat, to the lifeblood of the industry.
Mistakes can be costly — so try to avoid them
Another important lesson that start-ups can learn from the entertainment industry is how important mistakes or missteps can be in determining the future of your company’s success.
Although the start-up world is often ruled by the mantra of launching products as early as possible and adapting to any mistakes as and when they happen in order to improve the product, there is something to be said for the opposite approach.
This is particularly true in the entertainment industry, where speed of delivery rarely trumps the need to deliver something that lives up to the hype expected of it.
The entertainment industry is often characterized by long-production schedules that frequently run over-time and over-budget.
However, while this is obviously undesirable, it also needs to be balanced against the fact that a product that doesn’t deliver or is underwhelming relative to fan’s expectations can make or break a production company.
With that said, it is often better to commit to the pursuit of perfection rather than rushing something out the door.
One of the most powerful strategies that entertainment businesses frequently adopt, and which is essential to their long-term success, is diversification.
It is particularly rare among the top media and entertainment businesses to only service one type of media channel or audience. Instead, the largest media and entertainment businesses are constantly finding ways to diversify the portfolio of work they are publishing.
Diversification in this manner allows them to expand their potential audiences as well as to increase their overall reach. This has a significant impact on their revenue streams and helps to keep their cashflow in a healthy state to fund future productions.
This lesson has value across all industries and sectors, but particularly the start-up sector where there is a tendency to maintain a narrow focus for too long.