Wednesday, August 20, 2008

TV-series on DVD is somewhat of a mystery to me

Marketing should be about offering products which satisfy the customer’s needs. Then it becomes important to understand the customer’s behaviour and to know the needs of the customer. However, this is often not so easy - quite the opposite, it is very hard. Many times a successful marketing campaign is more based on a hunch and luck than anything else. The times have been many when the marketers have been sure of a marketing success. This only to discover it too be a failure. What I what to say here is that despite all the refined research tools, marketing is a lot about chance. This is not something many within the marketing industry would admit though. The point is that what tick and not tick in the market is difficult to know beforehand.

Take the selling of TV-series on DVD as an example. If you look on the DVD section e.g. Amazon.com or similar it is literary littered with offerings to buy last season of e.g. Office, House, Sex and The City, or the complete box of Seinfeld. TV-series on DVD seems to have turned out to be a huge success.

For me this is somewhat of a mystery. I am puzzle over consumer’s behaviour here. Why do we buy TV-series on DVD when we can see them on TV? What need is satisfied with DVD which is not satisfied by TV? Here are some arguments for why DVD is better than TV which I can think of.

1 We can see the series on DVD when we have time. We do not have to adapt to the TV tableau. Yes, but usually there are many reruns so most of us should be able to find a suitable time to look at it on TV.
2 We want to watch an episode several times. Okay, but how fun is that and do you have so much time on you hand, really?
3 We think the series are so good so we want to collect them. Okay, yes that can be true for some but hardly for the majority of the mainstream market.
4 The price is low so we can afford it. Yes, that is a strong argument I think. But still, for many it is quite pricey to by a DVD box.
5 We want to look at all episodes in a consequently order – here an now. We do not want to wait one week to see next episode. This I think is the strongest argument so far. We as consumers seek instant gratification. We do not want to wait and that is why we are prepared to pay the extra cost of buying the TV-series on DVD instead of see it on the Telly.

To sell TV-series on DVD has been very profitable for the TV producing companies. I’m glad that I where not in charge of this selling because I may have made a flounder on this one. I still do not see exactly what the advantages are and what needs really are satisfied in this. Luckily, marketers do not work alone. There is always fellow markerters how can put you on the right track if you stray way on an unsuccessful path.

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