DualDisc Getting Warmer22 Aug, 2005 By: Jessica Wolf
DualDisc is starting to scratch the surface of the music business, according to a new consumer survey.
Consumer awareness, acceptance and perception of the DVD-CD hybrid is still a mixed bag for the format, which was launched wide just last February.
Of the 2,000 music-purchasing consumers surveyed by The NPD Group, just 27 percent were even aware of what a DualDisc is.Moreover, the No. 1 reason consumers bought a DualDisc is by accident, with 47 percent saying they didn't know they had bought a DualDisc until after they brought it home and opened it.
“If so many buyers learned about DualDisc by default, then an education campaign is needed,” NPD's music division president Russ Crupnick said Aug. 13 during a research supersession at the National Association of Recording Merchandisers (NARM) convention in San Diego.
“The key initiative [for record companies as well as retailers] needs to be to continue to build awareness,” he said. “We need to elevate the message.”
The potential is certainly there, Crupnick said. More than 300 respondents to the NARM-commissioned survey already had purchased a DualDisc in the March-May time frame of the survey. And 59 percent of all respondents said they would buy a hybrid disc.
Crupnick put the onus on suppliers and retailers to spread the word, and fast.
Only 8 percent of the survey's consumers were drawn to DualDisc from an in-store display, he noted, so there's a lot more opportunity to be mined from in-store promotions.
Nearly 5 million DualDiscs — about 2 percent of total music sales — have been sold since the product's launch in February. Such titles as Bruce Springsteen's Devils and Dust and Rob Thomas' Something to Be, which were released only on the hybrid format, led the charge, Crupnick said.
However, 45 percent of DualDisc buyers in the survey said the album they wanted was offered as a CD or a DualDisc, and they chose the hybrid.
Those surveyed said the audio content was the most important factor of DualDisc. Close behind that ranking was music videos, followed by live concert footage.
“It's really about the music first,” Crupnick said. “But it's also about the video — and video that relates directly to the music experience, like music videos or live concert footage.”