Just five months after PlayStation tapped Johannes Leonardo to market its Vue service, the company is holding another review for creative work. While it seems a little soon (Johaness Leonardo’s first TV spot only appeared in June), apparently the pitch Johanness Leonardo won was just for the product launch. Now the brand’s review is aimed at finding ideas for the next phase of marketing as Vue aims to expand. Vue faces stiff competition from Netflix, Hulu, and Amazon Instant Video. It’s going to take an expertly targeted marketing effort to break into those ranks.
PlayStation was first introduced on December 3, 1994 in Japan with the launch of the original PlayStation console - just a week after Sega’s rival Saturn console debuted. The PlaysStaion brand now consists of four home consoles, as well as a media center, an online service, a line of controllers, two handhelds and a phone, as well as multiple magazines. Sony has an existing user base of 35 million PlayStations, PS3 and PS4 combined, in the US.
PlayStation Vue, a cloud-based TV service offering live television, movies and sports without cable or satellite subscription, was launched in March 2015 with an entry price is $50 a month. It is entering into a market with stiff competition, like Netflix, Hulu, Amazon Instant Video and the budget-savvy Sling TV, which launched just 1 month before Vue services.
Sony said it is introducing Vue as an entertainment solution for households that already have the company's PlayStation 3 and 4 gaming consoles.
"That gamer household is something we've defined even further," said Daniel Myers, Vue's head of product. "Lots of people use these platforms to consume Netflix and other digital media. The household is bigger than just the guy who bought the PlayStation."
Netflix is the largest player in the video streaming market, reaching 38% of Americans. According to Janney analyst Tony Wible, one reason for Netflix’s supremacy is its huge content budget which is expected to grow up to $6 billion in 2016. Moreover, 45 percent of Netflix streaming subscribers say the types of shows they watch when they stream are original content, such as House of Cards, Lilyhammer, Orange is the New Black, and Daredevil.
In measuring the penetration of the 3 OTT players within Sony PlayStation’s audience, we weren’t surprised to discover that Netflix is the company with the largest share of Playstation’s audience (8.4%).
AUDIENCE ANALYSIS - TARGET SEGMENT: PLAYSTATION AUDIENCE SUBSCRIBED TO NETFLIX
The profile of the PlayStation customer who’s already using OTT services like Netflix is a young man under 25 who is in, or just graduated from, college and makes between $40-$70K a year.
Combining demographic data with psychographic traits, we find an audience of young adults who share a passion for videogames and, to a lesser extent, technology in general (Techies 16.7%).
This group is just moving out of their colleges or parents’ houses, living on their own for the first time, and are actively engaged shaping their homes (Homemakers 196.2 Relevance, Home Decorators & DIYs 193.8). They also enjoy the companionship of pets (Pet Lovers 196.6)
INTERESTS, HOBBIES AND PASSIONS: FOCUS: TV SHOWS
Looking at the TV content preferences, we learn that this audience is not interested in reality television - no talk shows or reality shows, and they’re not fond of dramas either. They do like game shows and comedies, however, along with family-oriented entertainment.
If we look at the complete Top 10 list of clothing brands, we begin to see another trend. The styles of clothing represented are as American as apple pie. Old Navy, American Eagle Outfitters, Hanes, Levi’s, Hollister Co., and Gap all share an outdoorsy feel, perfect for stylish camping, afternoons spent on the beach, or picnics by the lake. Taken together, they give us an insight into the lifestyle to which Heinz customers aspire.
EMOTIONS - FOCUS: MUSIC
Their tastes in music, however, are far less family-friendly with genres like Metal, Urban & Hip Hop, Punk and Hard Rock gaining popularity indexes of over 100 points.
MEDIA PREFERENCES: FOCUS: TV
Television is the medium that best characterizes the audience with a popularity index of 138.4, while all the other media score under 100 popularity points.
Family-oriented content is a recurring theme with this audience; in fact Kids and Family channels are the most popular alongside funny entertainment channels like Comedy Central and pet-oriented educational channels like Animal Planet and Discovery Channel. Furthermore, Adult Swim, the channel that reaches this audience most (20%), aired a particular cartoon named Metalocalypse in 2006 which mixed metal music with Cartoons in a program that often portrayed dark and macabre content with extremely hyperbolic black comedy.
INFLUENCERS: FOCUS: FOCUS: FICTIONAL CHARACTERS
It shouldn’t be a surprise that this cartoon-oriented audience can be influenced by fictional characters. The fictional character who thrills this audience the most is Batman, reaching 20% and ranking first by relevance index. Whereas Netflix has the market cornered on gritty superheroes with Daredevil, PlayStation might have an opportunity with a Batman-like series, or at least an edgy “Dark Knight” style marketing campaign with a dash of punk rock.
The content and marketing strategies that are most likely to appeal to this audience are edgy cartoons that are a little dark, irreverent, and sometimes, just plain silly. This is the audience that loves Batman, but also watches Spongebob Squarepants. They listen to metal and enjoy the Cookie Monster. They’re a group of young adults who are still very much children at heart, even while taking on adult responsibilities. Adult Swim strikes this balance brilliantly, and it would be a brilliant idea for PlayStation to take a page from their book by adopting a bold communication style, rife with parodies, irony, and sharp observations.