On the heels of encouraging early sales for HD DVD players and discs,
the format's backers announced the launch
of an aggressive $150 million multimedia marketing campaign
later this year
to boost awareness of the format, reports Video Business.
The initiative will encompass all media including print, internet, television
and other outlets. All advertising will boast the tagline "The Look and
Sound of Perfect." A new Web site was also launched late yesterday, www.TheLookandSoundofPerfect.com
which touts the HD DVD's superior video and audio capabilities and includes
trailers of HD DVD movies.
The centerpiece of the campaign is a massive traveling 18-wheeler "home
theater truck" designed to boost consumer awareness of the high-definition
format. Emblazoned with HD DVD signage and filled with HD DVD players and discs,
the caravan will embark on a 10-city nationwide tour later this year.
Representatives from HD DVD-supporting hardware and software companies jointly
announced the marketing initiative late yesterday at a press event at the annual
Video Software Dealers Association (VSDA) convention in Las Vegas. Executives
on hand cited industry market data that suggested a high consumer "intent
to buy" of HD DVD hardware and software as key to the massive marketing
Universal executive VP of marketing Ken Graffeo pointed to HD DVD research,
conducted by Ipsos, "[That] given the scenario of equal studio support
for both HD DVD and the competing Blu-ray Disc, respondents were more than seven
times more likely to buy an HD DVD player vs. a Blu-ray player." A big
difference between the two formats is price -- current hardware models sell
for about $500 and $1,000, respectively.
Though only an estimated 20,000 HD DVD players have been sold to consumers since
launch last April, disc sales are impressive. Certain individual titles have
sold nearly 20,000 copies, almost at a ratio of one per HD DVD player owner,
with some moving as many as 5,000 in their first week on shelves.
Graffeo indicated that based on the positive early response, the HD DVD format
could triumph over rival Blu-ray if given more widespread marketing and better
awareness at retail. "There is an element of confusion," he said.
"There is product that is hidden on shelves. But the 10-city tour will
help raise visibility of the format."