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iDEA Logs On to High-Def With Blog for Retailers

1 Feb, 2006 By: Holly J. Wagner

The Independent Dealers of Entertainment Association (iDEA) is getting ahead of high-definition disc releases, putting together an online “interactive white paper” using a blog format.

The indie arm of the Video Software Dealers Association will identify some veteran retailers to contribute to a blog about the rollout of high-def disc formats and how to manage the new area of business.

“We are reaching out to some specific retailers who were involved in the DVD introduction,” said iDEA's Adrian Hickman.

The purpose is to help dealers decide how deep to wade in at launch, pick up on trends as they emerge, identify opportunities to serve existing customers and reach new ones, and share nuts-and-bolts information for doing business in a high-definition era.

It was important to take this effort online because of the launch schedule, competing formats and the need for information from the field, Hickman said.

“It's unlike a paper,” he said. “We couldn't wait and put it out later. It would be stagnant.”

This launch will be different because of the competing formats.

“The original [DVD] introduction was in a limited market,” he said. “[Suppliers] treaded a little differently; they let it get up to speed. This time, you have two formats coming to market, so the manufacturers of the machines, followed by the suppliers, are trying to make a connection with the consumer to be the winner.”

Indies will have to be nimble to keep up.

“They are on tighter resources,” Hickman said. “Some of them may be more rental than sale, some may be more sale than rental,” which would involve different strategies depending on consumer behavior.

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