Amazon’s bet on video content appears to be paying off, with its leading shows bringing in more than 5 million people to Prime by the early part of last year.
Citing company documents obtained by Reuters, the news service reported that Amazon’s audience in the U.S. for all of its video programming that is on Prime stands at around 26 million customers. According to Reuters, Amazon has never disclosed how many U.S. viewers it had. The documents — which look at different metrics for 19 Amazon exclusive shows including cost, viewership and number of people brought to Prime — shows that Prime Originals accounted for about one-quarter of Prime sign-ups from the end of 2014 to the early part of last year. One of the main strategies behind Amazon’s original content push is to convert the viewers into shoppers. Customers get access to Amazon’s video by signing up to Prime. Amazon declined to comment on the documents, Reuters reported, noting that the company hasn't been shy about how entertainment will drive sales of products. “When we win a Golden Globe, it helps us sell more shoes,” Amazon Chief Executive Jeff Bezos said at a 2016 technology conference, noting at the time that film and TV customers renew subscriptions “at higher rates, and they convert from free trials at higher rates” than members who don't access the content via Prime, reported Reuters.
The documents showed that Amazon’s television drama “The Man in the High Castle” has 8 million U.S. viewers as of early 2017, while it cost $72 million in production and marketing costs. The show brought 1.15 million new subscribers worldwide. What’s more, the documents revealed that based on Amazon's calculations, the show brought in Prime customers at an average cost of $63 each subscriber.
For years Amazon has had a hit on its hands with Prime, which has become a huge component of its business. For 2017 it said it shipped more than 5 billion items worldwide through Prime. In a press release at the time, the company said more new paid members joined Prime around the globe in 2017 than in any other year.