House of Cards: Big Data’s success.
Netflix was always confident that House of Cards would be a success – as it’s proving to be – because they relied on big data analysis to know the potential before spending the money.
Big data – the ability to analyze ever larger amounts of data to pull out meaning from it, is a trend underlying everything from what goes into a catalog (Target worked out a girl was pregnant before her father knew), to determining the success of a TV show.
Of course, the risk is that only the predictable will get green lit:
Thankfully, we’re not there yet. And in the case of House of Cards, Netflix’s certainty of the show’s success may have afforded the show’s producerseven more creative latitude. But there are still limitations to the approach. Had it been around, Big Data probably could have told producers that a series about James Gandolfini playing a mob boss would be a winner. But there’s no way it would’ve given the green light to Twin Peaks.