This is a guest blog post by Jacopo Romei. Author of the Italian version of the book Extreme Contracts, and author of an upcoming book on the same topic in English.
We all know how easy it is to leave Netflix after having subscribed to their service.
Whenever you want to cancel the subscription, you just click a button and you are free, no questions, no tricks, no cheating.
You are free to use the service until the date you had paid for and you will be free to rejoin again, whenever you want. This feeling of freedom is a crucial part of Netflix branding, and was a key attractor for their first users. You read it on their homepage, clear and bold: “Watch anywhere. Cancel anytime.” It is a promise, second only to the one about the chance to see your favorite movies in full mobility on any device.
Now, imagine for a minute, what would happen if Netflix were to not keep their promises. Imagine that Netflix would ask for extra documentation before the user was allowed to leave, perhaps even setting a mandatory notice period, preventing users from quitting when too close to the subscription expiry date.
Imagine what would happen if Netflix wouldn’t actually allow you to “cancel anytime.” If this nightmare scenario was a reality, tons of disappointed friends would tell you that Netflix is not up to expectations, they would abandon the service with no intention to return, and they would actively discourage other people from subscribing in the first place! In the end, Netflix would see fewer users and less engagement.
The Anti-Netflix contract
The plot thickens…