A Few Words About Netflix’s Success: Vivid. Snappy. Tags.

“Grey’s Anatomy” is “soapy” and “emotional.” “Emily in Paris” is “campy” and “quirky.” “Our Planet II” is “relaxing” and “captivating,” while “Gravity” is “suspenseful” and “visually striking.”

Words such as these — displayed near the synopsis and movie-poster-style tile for each one of the thousands of titles on Netflix — appear to be scooped out of a grab bag.

In fact, they are a critical tool to induce viewers to click play, and a key to Netflix’s dominance.

The two- or three-word tags, meant to convey the gestalt of a show or movie, regularly help viewers choose a show from the service’s nearly endless library, the company says. The words are selected by about 30 employees — so-called taggers.


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