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THE MORNING BUZZ: Our Oscar Poll Debuts Monday

14 Feb, 2002 By: Kurt Indvik

This is a bald-faced promotional pitch for Video Store Magazine's Readers' Picks Oscar poll, which will appear here beginning Monday. Voting is open to all home video industry participants 18 years and older and you'll be entered into a drawing to win one of three DVD players! (You can also request a written ballot by writing to us at our Santa Ana, Calif., office).

Each of the five weeks leading up to the Academy Awards March 24, we will feature five or so different categories of the total 24 major Oscar categories in which you can vote for your favorite nominees. On the last week we will post a ballot for all 24 categories, in case you happened to miss a ballot one week. Voting will close 9 a.m. EST March 21. Video Store Magazine will then issue a public announcement on the results of the voting Friday, March 22.

Of course the point of all this is to generate some fun and interesting results as to who the video industry thinks ought to be getting those golden statuettes. But it also points to the Academy Awards' strong impact on home video throughout the year.

Last year at around this time, Video Store Magazine reported that, according to VideoScan, Gladiator, which had received 12 Oscar nominations, experienced a 65 percent increase in DVD sales over the previous week the week after the nominations were announced. Similarly, Erin Brockovich, which got five Oscar nods, saw increase of 47 percent for sales of its DVD, and 46 percent increased for the VHS version.

This year we have many more titles nominated already in the retail pipeline and several more set to bow prior to the awards. (Check out next week's issue of Video Store Magazine for a complete update.) Whether for rental or sales, retailers have no better promotional vehicle than the Oscars to drive revenue from here through the early part of the fall. You can fashion your own in-store, take advantage of the VSDA's "Oscar Night Comes Home" retailer promotion kit ($30 gets you posters, section headers and a raft of other goodies) developed with the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences. Expect some aggressive marketing support from the studios as well.

I encourage you to participate in the Readers' Picks poll. It will be fun for all, but more importantly we'll use the results for public relations to remind the media of the important role home video plays in the move industry and to add to the consumer interest in renting and buying home videos. See you at the polls.

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