Netflix Q1 2021 Earnings Insights on Netflix’s Kids Strategy

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yes day q1 2021 netflix report kids

Yes Day – Picture: Netflix

Netflix announced its Q1 earnings this week and once again, Emily Horgan, an independent media analyst takes us through the recent quarter with a particular emphasis on Netflix’s kids’ efforts. 

Here’s a quick roundup of notes from Netflix’s Q1 2021 Earnings as they relate to the kid’s content space. Missed the Q4 2020 recap? Head back and read now.

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First up a few broad headlines:


Much of the coverage focuses on global subscriber growth of 3.98 million falling short of the 6 million which had been forecast.  This was firmly attributed to pandemic-related forces, rather than any material change to “competitive intensity”.  The two factors specifically outlined were:

1.     A pull forward of subscribers in 2020.  To be fair, Q1 2020 saw 15.8 million subscribers added alone, against a forecast of 7 million.  There’s a nice chart with quarterly forecast vs. actual subscriber growth from Variety.

2.     A lighter content slate in the first half of 2021, as a result of COVID-influenced production hiatuses.


The rise of streaming to replace linear TV was discussed with certainty.  Conversely linear was also outlined as the largest competitor for TV viewing time, with YouTube coming in second. Gaming and UGC were also highlighted.

Now onto the good stuff…. kids’ content performance:

The massive 36 Oscar nominations received by Netflix were referenced including nods for Best Animated Feature, received for Over the Moon, and A Shaun the Sheep Movie:  Farmageddon. Detailed information for Over the Moon was covered in my Q4 2020 note.

As usual, a tranche of Netflix viewership data was released. This references the number of members that access a title for 2 mins+ in the first 28 days from launch.  For kids’ content, the initial projection for YES DAY of 53 million members upgraded to a whopping 66 million. The film features Jennifer Garner and Jenna Ortega (from Disney Channel’s Stuck in the Middle) and now tops the chart of stats released by the platform for kids’ content.

Sitting adjacent to kids, the final installment of the To All the Boys film series also had viewership data released, clocking 51 million. The full overview of Netflix reported performance of kids content is listed below, with recent releases in bold:

Netflix Self Released Viewing Performance for Kids Content

Netflix Datecdotes for Kids Content

We’ve yet to have viewership data released for any kids’ series from Netflix. Global original launches which might have enjoyed this treatment are included in the key Q1 releases below. I have side notes on all these so give me a shout if you want any further detail.

Netflix Q1 Kids Releases

Netflix Q1 Kids Releases drafted with the help of true experts, Kasey Moore and Jacob Robinson

In addition to this Sony produced The Mitchells vs. The Machines hits the platform on April 30th globally. This is from the same team that was behind The Lego Movie so has great potential.

Lastly, we’re expecting subsequent series for Trash Truck, Izzy’s Koala World, and Camp Cretaceous.

And finally:

The improved user interface for kids’ profiles was referenced. This is now more visual in nature with favorite characters served front and center.  A good write-up of this in Tech Crunch.

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Emily is an independent media consultant. She has a background in television, driving content distribution strategies for kids IP that support success across businesses including consumer products, publishing and gaming.