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Is the HD DVD camp dropping the ball in marketing?


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#1 of 39 OFFLINE   Darren Gross

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Posted February 14 2007 - 06:48 AM

I've been a bit concerned lately at the lack of any marketing push with HD DVD, particularly in Best Buy. Each week, there's a featured page on Blu-Ray with players for sale and new titles, in their weekly flyer. In addition, there's a nice end-cap display of a Blu-Ray player and HD TV running a Blu-Ray sampler disc, and a bunch of titles are displayed as well. Nice visibility raising consumer awareness directly. If you're looking for HD DVD promotion, there's nothing. No HD DVD new releases or players highlighted in the weekly flyer, no end cap with HD DVD player and titles...In fact if you want to find the HD DVD players you have to hunt around looking for them. HD DVD titles are arriving and being carried by the stores (the local one has equal sized Blu-Ray and HD DVD racks)...though this week THE DEPARTED appeared to only show up in Blu-Ray, unless all the HD DVD ones were sold in two hours which I doubt. The buyers for HD DVD for Best Buy also seem to have dropped the ball on certain waves of releases. CASABLANCA, MUTINY ON THE BOUNTY and FORBIDDEN PLANET have yet to shown up at any of the local stores in my area. (I'm told that sales were disappointing for these titles, but frankly, its a bit hard judge the sales when the buyers aren't putting them in the stores!) Seems like the HD DVD camp is letting the consumer down by this non-existent BB marketing.

#2 of 39 OFFLINE   Neil Middlemiss

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Posted February 14 2007 - 07:05 AM

I noticed the lack of HD-DVD in the Best Buy flyer, too. Each week they have a nice highlight of Blu-Ray but nothing for me Posted Image

Come on HD-DVD - Show 'em what your made of Posted Image
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#3 of 39 OFFLINE   dkny75

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Posted February 14 2007 - 07:31 AM

I think they're too busy spending money on gas for that ginormous 18 wheeler they're driving around.

#4 of 39 OFFLINE   Darren Gross

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Posted February 14 2007 - 09:30 AM

?

#5 of 39 OFFLINE   BrettB

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Posted February 14 2007 - 09:44 AM

He's referring to the 18-wheeler the HD DVD Group drives around as a promotional device.

#6 of 39 OFFLINE   Brent T

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Posted February 14 2007 - 09:56 AM

Well when I picked up the HD-DVD The Departed at my local BB yesterday only HD was set out with the new releases. They were sold out of them at the BB near my work and had plenty of BDs in the BD section. I had to go to another BB close to my home which had two copies of it left in HD and it also had plenty of the BDs available. But once again HDs had a section in the new releases while the BDs were in the HD/BD section

#7 of 39 OFFLINE   Darren Gross

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Posted February 14 2007 - 10:40 AM

Really? How interesting.

#8 of 39 OFFLINE   Greg Kettell

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Posted February 14 2007 - 12:35 PM

I wouldn't be at all surprised to see The Departed HD DVD outselling the Blu-Ray version by a substantial amount, with the Best Buy one-day sale on the HD DVD and B&M stores seeming to not getting much of the BD in stock. My local Best Buy was sold out of both at about 3:00pm yesterday. However I did manage to find a copy of the BD at Circuit City.

#9 of 39 OFFLINE   Tim Glover

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Posted February 14 2007 - 02:23 PM

2 weeks ago, the CC ad had some love for HD DVD with no BD news...but this past Sunday, the new flyer for BB was all Blu-ray. The new sd-dvd side of Hollywoodland has a cool commercial on it about HD DVD. So all those renting or buying the sd version will see it. That's good marketing.

Much more is needed and they need to boast when a title sells well like The Departed HD DVD combo disc. I would be playing that card until the cows came home. Posted Image

#10 of 39 OFFLINE   ReggieW

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Posted February 18 2007 - 07:19 PM

Hello D. I think Adam has made it clear that changes are coming from Universal in regards to HD-DVD (though, Adam and the rest of us are still waiting to hear from them). Thus far, their marketing strategy has been pretty lousy. I visited my mother in San Diego yesterday to help her with her new HT, I told her that I now had an HD-DVD player and she said "you mean Blu-ray?" - She had never heard of HD-DVD. This is a shame when you consider that HD-DVD is supposed to be the successor of the DVD format. This misconception can be remedied with a lot more promotion and a better marketing strategy. The 18 wheeler simply won't cut it in the 21st century. With the pending release of the Matrix films and Start Trek TOS season 1 later in the year, the HD-DVD forum should play on this exclusivity, even if it will likely only last for a few months. Pay for kiosks at Best Buy and Circuit City for a few weeks to highlight this fact, as well as paying for television ads touting this. I do believe that HD-DVD has much to offer, and that it is a natural progression from standard DVD. The HD-DVD supporting studios will just have to keep the content flowing, and the Weinsteins should start exploiting their newly acquired Bronston and Dynasty Dragon catalog titles on HD-DVD. I do not expect HD-DVD to keep up with Blu-ray in overall content, since obviously, they have more studio support, but I know they must do better than they've done so far this year.
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#11 of 39 OFFLINE   Dave Mack

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Posted February 18 2007 - 07:37 PM

http://hddvd.highdef....interview.html

#12 of 39 OFFLINE   Wet1

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Posted February 19 2007 - 07:43 AM

I think they not only dropped the ball, but they handed it to the BR camp on a silver plater.

Every B&M store I go into I find a very nice BR display and next to nothing for HD-DVD. Same is true for every other main stream avenue of advertising (other than 18 wheelers Posted Image ). I suspect it's mostly subsidized by Sony, but regardless, they're getting the job done.

Sony and the PS3 have totally given HD-DVD a huge uppercut over the last two months and that's only getting worse as the PS3 is rolled out throughout the world... Even I didn't think the PS3 would have the effect it's beginning to have, or maybe it's just that I didn't want to believe it WOULD have this much effect. Either way, the PS3 has changed the tide... heavily.

Lastly, with HD-DVD having very limited studio support, you almost have to be a fool to buy into HD-DVD today. If I could only pick one studio to be behind me, I'd choose Universal, so HD-DVD does have that going for them. BUT, since BR has just about every other studio in their camp, future offerings are going to be slim pickings for HD-DVD adopters.

I haven't seen the latest numbers, but I wouldn't be surprised to see BR outselling HD-DVD 2:1 (or more) these days. I suppose it's a classic example of what better marketing and support can do, and he BR camp has clearly outdone their competition in this regard. It's sad to see as HD-DVD had a big head start in this war, but I think the outcome is becoming more clear every day... Only a blind man (in denial) would pick HD-DVD to win this thing going forward. Then again, I truly believe a single format would be in everyones best interest going forward (and sooner rather than later!)

With all of this having been said, I'm getting fully behind BR at this point... I just placed an order for 8 discs. Posted Image

#13 of 39 OFFLINE   ReggieW

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Posted February 19 2007 - 09:50 AM

I do think supporters on both sides are getting a bit carried away here.... The sales data for BD's lead is only for two months - two months where BR actually released MUCH more content than HD-DVD did. What happens months down the road when HD-DVD releases the Back to the Future, The Matrix films, Start Trek TOS S1 & Battlestar Galactica? What if the numbers swing back to HD-DVD's favor once these titles touch down? Numbers for both formats are so low that they will likely fluctuate from month to month depending on what and how much content is released. Secondly, If anyone here somehow thinks the war is over because of this is fooling themselves. The numbers for both BD & Hd-DVD are so small they don't even register in relation to SD DVD - The REAL enemy in this war. This is how we'll know when/if there is a winner: Once any one of these formats begin taking a nice chunk of the SD-DVD revenue, then we can start saying "maybe there'll be a winner," but imho, not until then. The vast majority of consumers are not really that interested in BD or HD-DVD at the moment, and sales from BOTH formats reflect this. I've heard the BD camp bragging that "Crank" sold 7500 copies it's first week. 7500?!!? Does any sensible person here believe that this will make Universal or any other studio throw in the towel? I also read that they compared the first week sales number to the HD-DVD of Batman Begins.....a title which has been out for four months! This kind of spin might grant the illusion of bragging rights to supporters who frequent this forum, but the general public, the people who will ultimately decide this war could care less. I do think that HD-DVD desperately needs to step up their PR campaign, and definitely need more CE manufacturer's on board for greater visibility. This war WILL continue, and no, the PS3 won't decide it. I really think Sony has made a grave miiscalculation by possibly sacrificing their gaming division for the next generation optical format, imho. Only time will tell. In the meantime, I'll just continue enjoying my A2.
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#14 of 39 OFFLINE   Wet1

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Posted February 20 2007 - 02:23 AM

While I've always wanted a single format, I thought it would be HD-DVD that would pull ahead in the end. Since the tide has changed so heavily, I'd suggest you do as I did and cash out while you still can. Posted Image

#15 of 39 OFFLINE   Ron-P

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Posted February 20 2007 - 03:28 AM

Yet another reason I added Blu-ray to my rig, although the main reason, I wanted all my movies in hi-def. I love HD-DVD and hope they survive this war but from the looks of it, I highly doubt it's going to happen. They blew out of the gates with a bang and now HD-DVD is nothing but a whimper, with nothing on the horizon that looks like it's going to change. While Blu started out show they've been doing nothing but picking up speed and they look to keep it up.
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#16 of 39 OFFLINE   ReggieW

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Posted February 20 2007 - 08:29 AM

Sorry Wet. I have no intention of "cashing out" because HD-DVD has released a dearth of titles for 3 months. This reasoning is plain silly. Given this logic, Blu-ray supporters would've done the same shortly after its launch. I will be enjoying BSG, Trek S1, Psycho, The Birds, Brazil, The Matrix trilogy, Mulholland Drive & god knows what else in a few months. They're all titles I currently have on standard def, so these won't be "Mercy buys" for HD. Frankly, I am getting a bit tired of the PS3 trojan horse propaganda. The PS3 effect on this war has been VERY overstated by its proponents, and allowing "Crank" to sell 7,500 in a week doesn't mean anything in the scheme of things. The propaganda that was throttled was that the PS3 would FINISH HD-DVD OFF. While it has increased sells, it has not so much that it will finish off anything. Btw, any idea what Batman Begins sold in its first week? I don't know if you've been watching the sales numbers, but the PS3's actual numbers (not just numbers shipped, which is what Sony always uses) have been pretty disappointing here in the States. Both Wie and the X-box 360 are having it for lunch. I really think Sony overstated its ability to sell a $500-$600 game system for the LONG TERM. Mark my words: The PS3 will NEVER be the success the PS2 was, nor will it allow Sony to monopolize the next generation optical movie disc. I really have a feeling that this war will continue for a long time unless there's a Sirius/XM type deal in the making. Knowing Sony's history, this doesn't seem likely. Giving the losses Sony has taken by subsidizing Blu-ray via the PS3 (and god knows what else), how long will it be before its stock-holders finally cry "enough." HD-DVD a dying horse...Nonsense. I have a feeling that most of us will all have Universal players this time next year.
More Harlow on DVD Now! - Red Dust, Bombshell, Hold Your Man, Saratoga, The Iron Man, Goldie, The Secret Six, Beast of the City, Three Wise Girls, Reckless, Personal Property, Riff-raff, Suzy & Girl from Missouri

#17 of 39 OFFLINE   BrettB

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Posted February 20 2007 - 08:37 AM

So.... before June you will have all those in your possession? Really? Nevertheless, you'll notice that those are all tv shows and catalog films. Tv and older films aren't driving the bus.

#18 of 39 OFFLINE   ReggieW

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Posted February 20 2007 - 09:17 AM

Brett B- My point is HD-DVD will have a boost in sales when these high profile titles are released, catalog or not, nor did I imply that I would have all of these titles in hand by June (I stated a "few months" with no specific month/date implied). As far as Universal goes, we'll have to wait and see what Universal reports back to Greg. They had a recent shakeup in their division, so this is obviously causing a delay (in responding to Greg). I really don't want to argue over this anymore. it is getting tiresome. If Blu-ray supporters believe that the war will end in a few months, fine, then prepare for a world of disappointment. I can ASSURE you that this isn't/won't be the case. Supporters of BOTH formats can rest easy. Let me repeat: The installed base of HDTV's are still not large enough to decide this war at this time, and the dismal sales being throttled by all sides (as of late, the BD side) are meaningless in the long run. SD DVD won't go away, nor will PS3 steamroller HD-DVD as Sony thought it would. Many consumers who bought HDTV's for the first time last year are blown away at how well their SD-DVD's look on their new 50-60 inch plasma/lcd coming from their sub $100 SD-DVD player. In fact, I bought my first HDTV last October, and even my jaw dropped when I slapped in Ben-hur and Ryan's Daughter on my new SXRD. It is this "wow factor" which both Blu-ray and HD-DVD will have to combat. ....and the prospects for BOTH don't look to rosy.
More Harlow on DVD Now! - Red Dust, Bombshell, Hold Your Man, Saratoga, The Iron Man, Goldie, The Secret Six, Beast of the City, Three Wise Girls, Reckless, Personal Property, Riff-raff, Suzy & Girl from Missouri

#19 of 39 OFFLINE   loganhunter2002

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Posted February 20 2007 - 10:35 AM

Yeah, whatever Posted Image Posted Image


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#20 of 39 OFFLINE   Darren Gross

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Posted February 20 2007 - 11:10 AM

Jerry Del Colliano at AVREV had some interesting ideas in helping give the HD and Blu-ray titles a bigger marketing push. My favorite of them is simply this: Release the high definition discs 1 week earlier than the standard definition DVDs. It's a great idea. New releases are what really drive sales, and when you get to bigger titles, it would really push some of those who are waiting it out.




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