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Record Label Tests Adding Value With DVD

26 Apr, 2002 By: Holly J. Wagner

In an effort to extend the reach of marketing efforts for the new CD from controversial multiplatinum artist Eminem, the disc will include a limited edition free DVD when it's released June 4.

The free DVD will be packaged with the CD in a brilliant box in the first two million copies of the CD in the U.S. and more than a million copies for international distribution. The free DVD will feature “exclusive never-before-seen footage” including interviews, live performances , behind-the-scenes footage and a trailer for Eminem's upcoming Imagine/Universal film, 8 Mile, which is scheduled for release Nov. 8.

"The idea of a value-added piece reaching millions of Eminem's fans in the first few weeks of release benefits his fans globally, retail, and the record business in general. We believe that the future of the record business rests on more value to the music fans," said Steve Berman, head of sales and marketing for Interscope Geffen A&M Records, which distributes Aftermath Entertainment, Eminem's label.

The DVD to be packaged with The Eminem Show indicates at least some record labels are responding to their distributors' observations about the support that DVD can provide for recorded music.

At the recent National Association of Recording Merchandisers (NARM) show, members praised the revenue that DVD generates to shore up a sagging recorded music industry and decried the high CD prices they said are hurting their business, noting the labels would have to add value to continue charging $20 per music CD and stanch the flow of digital piracy.

“We want to give fans a reason to go to the record store and buy our version of the CD instead of a bootleg or taking something off the Internet,” Eminem's manager, Paul Rosenberg said. “There's obviously an upside for us as far as marketing the CD, but our intention is not to be the heroes of the music industry, our intention is to give something extra to the fans. As far as Eminem's concerned, he's made a great album and we're going to do our best to sell it, just as we always have.”

In addition to the free DVD, for the first time Eminem's lyrics will be included in the CD packaging both so that fans can have them “and to hopefully avoid his lyrics being misquoted since they can now be seen in context,” said a press release from Interscope

The federal Communications Commission sanctioned Eminem last year for lyrics quoted from “The Real Slim Shady,” but reversed itself earlier this year after studying the lyrics in context. In this case, raw language and characterizations were used to illustrate social ills, not just for shock value.

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