Campaign of the Week

19 October 2021

Arthouse streaming service pegs price to popularity of bad movies 

Swedish streaming platform Draken Film offers discounted subscriptions to encourage people to broaden their taste in films

Sweden's leading streaming service for art house cinema is Draken Film, the video on demand (VoD) platform of the Göteborg Film Festival. Draken wanted to encourage viewers to choose high-quality films and direct people towards its streaming platform.

Working with Gothenburg-based agency Forsman & Bodenfors, the streaming service created the Bad Movie Index (BMI): a real-time analysis of how many people are watching bad movies on the world’s top five streaming sites. This would then determine Draken’s monthly streaming price (usually $10 a month), so that the more people watch films with a low rating (according to the rankings of two major movie rating sites), the lower Draken’s monthly price is.

For example, when the number of people viewing low-quality films increases and the index is at its lowest, people can subscribe to Draken for a monthly price of 29 SEK (USD$3.3). When the index shows that people are streaming highly rated movies, the price rises to 109 SEK ($12.5).

The index works by comparing film ratings against the top ten most streamed films in Sweden. The live results are shown at, displayed similarly to stock indexes on a financial site. ‘Of course, opinions will differ, as they often do when discussing film,’ reads the website. ‘At Draken Film we believe that quality film comes from all around the globe, broadens your taste and might not always fit inside the streaming giants’ massive libraries. We believe in letting people decide the content, not algorithms.’

The campaign site also offers insights into Draken’s library, revealing that its catalogue contains a higher number of films with female directors and more geographical diversity than competing streaming services. Visitors to the index can register for an account there and then or sign up for a two-week free trial.

‘At Draken Film we put our heart and souls into carefully selecting films that offer something extra to the viewer and broaden their view of what quality film can be,’ said Mirja Wester, CEO of Draken Film and Göteborg Film Festival, in a press release. ‘By lowering our prices when the Bad Movie Index goes down, we hope that more people will discover and be inspired by our selection.’

Contagious Insight 

Brand personality / The streaming world is fiercely competitive, with a few major frontrunners (Netflix, Disney+, Amazon Prime Video, HBO Max and Apple TV) hogging the majority of the market. ‘Netflix is still considered the industry’s leader, but the hunger for change is palpable,’ writes Josef Adalian for Vulture. And when you’re not even selling your own product, but content made by other parties, it’s difficult to be distinctive in such a saturated market. When breadth and diversity of genre is a selling point, how can you work out your brand’s tone of voice? By building a campaign around quality, high-rated films, Draken Film establishes itself as an authority on film and as the streaming service for true film-lovers. But the campaign stops short of snobbery: the playful nature of the ‘Bad Movie Index’ helps Draken appeal to film buffs without alienating less knowledgeable viewers.

Dramatising a product benefit / The BMI serves as a reminder of what Draken Film has to offer that mainstream streaming services might not: highly rated, high quality films from underrepresented territories and directors. By lowering its subscription fee in line with the streaming of low quality films, Draken assures existing and potential subscribers that they can consider themselves real film fans, set apart from those who are streaming ‘bad movies’. By framing what is essentially a promotional discount as a mission to help people discover new films and broaden their tastes, Draken positions itself as a champion and protector of good quality cinema, and invites people to help the film industry by signing up for a Draken Film streaming subscription.

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