Netflix Gets Eleven-level Powers For 'Stranger Things 2' Boost


Netflix — MediaHub

The Challenge

“Stranger Things Season 1” created a social phenomenon arguably as powerful as heavy hitters like “Game of Thrones.” So when Netflix tasked MediaHub with growing viewership and social conversation for Season 2, they needed Eleven-level powers to make an even greater impact than its initial breakout success. 

Their research revealed that the hardcore fans from Season 1, whom they dubbed “the nerds,” were passionate about gaming and technology and were drawn to the thrills and chills the series evokes. So they abandoned typical media practices to reignite the nerds’ love for the show through a first-to-market execution on their favorite websites that cover both tech and gaming news — Mashable, GameSpot, and Metacritic. 

MediaHub mimicked Eleven’s telekinetic powers and invited the nerds into the Upside Down by turning Mashable, GameSpot, and Metacritic entirely upside down. They worked with these sites’ tech and ad-ops teams to create and code this first-ever execution that flipped both the ads and content upside down, along with updating the creative to look like the Nether in the Upside Down world. 

After the experience resolved, users were able to reengage with the unit to visit the Upside Down as many times as they wanted. This was a thrilling experience for the nerds and ultimately contributed to the campaign being a  hit. 

The Results

  • Viewership in the first weekend was higher than the “Game of Thrones” season finale, with 16 million viewers, per Nielsen. 
  • Mashable got a 14.2% interaction rate (1.2x higher than benchmark) with 6 flips per user (no benchmark, as it was first to market). 
  • GameSpot and Metacritic had a 2% engagement rate (no benchmark, as this was first to market). 
  • Season-over-season searches doubled, per Google Trend.
  • Social conversation increased by 5.8x, per Crimson Hexagon. 
  • Paid impressions more than quadrupled, with 4.4x increase in earned media.

Key takeaways

Leverage enthusiasm for a product by re-creating the experience it provides.

Team with content providers for a win-win proposition.

This campaign won a MediaPost OMMA Award in 2018.

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