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  1. #31
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    Quote Originally Posted by khuxford View Post
    Having to personally record your favorite shows if you weren't going to be home to see them? That's how life used to work before stuff like Hulu and networks putting their content on the web or selling them through Amazon & iTunes.

    And I don't really know how that entered into the talk, because it came from him responding to your statement that his mom would have an easier time finding it at a DM than a retail bookstore. I don't see where the perils of trade-waiting came into it. Just another opportunity to say that serialization into collection is just the way life works?
    I guess I'm being less than clear in this example, because I didn't specify more -- if I want to watch a new original series on Showtime or HBO, I have two options: 1) Subscribe to HBO, or 2) wait for the box set to come out. AFAIK, there is no Hulu, or iTunes or anything else for current active new series because HBO's business model depends on you subscribing to the network.

    This is how it works, and its hard to see that changing because then HBO wouldn't have the money to produce those shows.

    Same with comics: OGNs (generally, with rare exceptions) make less money than serialization-than-collection -- and comics companies are in it to make the largest profit they can, whether any individual consumer would prefer for it to be differently.

    The observation that it will be easier (based upon the [semi-]public numbers we can see, and maybe not based upon actual reality) to find this BOOK in the DM rather than in a BOOKSTORE was, at best, a humorous aside, not the thrust of an argument.

    -B

  2. #32
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    Quote Originally Posted by RJT View Post
    But you still haven't addressed the question of when DC should utilize its marketing dollars: three months before the first single issue is released, or before the collected version is released?
    Ultimately? That's DC's concern, not mine. I don't think it has to be one or the other, and you can pitch and craft different messages for different markets at different times, in my opinion.

    Like: I saw a lot of marketing for THE SOPRANOS when a new season debuted; and I saw a lot of marketing when the box set is released. I see a lot of marketing for new films when they are released in theaters; then I see a lot more marketing when that same film comes out for the home.


    Quote Originally Posted by RJT View Post
    I think this highlights how myopically you view everything through your DM-prism: comic books have a two-week window, but that doesn't hold for every other outlet. I was in my local Barnes & Noble last week and they had "Freedom" faced out on a table by the entrance...a full two and half months after it had been released. (They also had each of the Blackest Night hardcovers by the entrance as well, racked with the new releases. )

    But, generally speaking (naturally, there will be some exceptions, but they're exceptions) bookstores continue to feature books like that BECAUSE they are successful already. They're putting their best-sellers in those key spots to try and get you to walk in the door/make an add-on sale to something else.

    I suspect that you will find that books that are critical or commercial flops to NOT be getting that kind of greater promotional push weeks/months later.

    (And, this is leaving aside that an awful lot of "endcap space" is said to be PURCHASED by the publishers in order to try and goose sales)

    I mean, it's the same reason that I'm racking 9+ month old issues of Morrison's BATMAN or BUFFY or whatever -- because they sell well enough to justify the space, and certain kinds of displays are self-reinforcing to sales. But those copies of the latest issue of AZRAEL that comes in tomorrow? You're sure not going to find those on display 28 days from now...

    Will SEO be on those endcaps? Maybe, sure; and, yes, I quite imagine it will continue to sell for some time to come, but given that Civilians are the specifically targeted intended audience for SEO, I'm pretty unsure if we can call 6k proven-sold copies as any kind of a real major success in its initial two weeks. That would be a tiny fraction of, say, TWILIGHT, Crumb's GENESIS, or a new NARUTO.

    Though this really all tangential to the broader points....



    Quote Originally Posted by RJT View Post
    Again, I enjoy monthly comics, and I go to my LCS every single week (I even picked up my copy of SEO there). But your attitude of "The DM has a stranglehold on comics and *shrug* what are you going to do?" seems to be the worst possible, head-in-the-sand reaction to the changing marketplace. Do I think the DM is about to go away? No. But the idea that you think it has some kind of never-ending monopoly on comic sales is equally as wrong-headed as the doomsayers who claim it will disappear next month.
    Monopoly? Sheesh, not hardly.

    Look, periodicals aren't exclusively limited to the DM. They're sold on newstands, they're sold in (*gasp*) bookstores like Borders, the music chain Hastings has made a giant push into them.

    Hell, even "day and date" digital releases are periodicals. The word reflects a delivery mechanism, not a specific sales channel.

    Now, sure, the DM is (currently) the best-structured, most-profitable way of selling periodicals, but this doesn't make this a "Pro-DM" argument because of that, per se.

    What I'm saying is that, regardless of what channel things are moving into, in virtually all cases (not 100% all, for "100% all" works for nothing, nowhere -- but "90% all") you'll end up making more money and having more eyeballs on a work if you serialize it, then collect it, rather than moving "straight to collection" (as it were)

    -B

  3. #33
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    Quote Originally Posted by Brian Hibbs View Post
    Ultimately? That's DC's concern, not mine. I don't think it has to be one or the other, and you can pitch and craft different messages for different markets at different times, in my opinion.

    Like: I saw a lot of marketing for THE SOPRANOS when a new season debuted; and I saw a lot of marketing when the box set is released. I see a lot of marketing for new films when they are released in theaters; then I see a lot more marketing when that same film comes out for the home.

    -B
    How many major mainstream news outlets covered the release of the Civil War TPB? Or the Batman R.I.P. hardcover?

    It seems that a comic book story gets only one shot being featured in "civilian" news outlets. You keep comparing comics in the DM with TV shows on HBO, even though it's a totally useless comparision, but while we're going with it: The Sopranos makes a lot more money, and therefore has a much larger marketing budget, than a graphic novel. You might as well compare the salaries of LeBron James and your local dentist. So that the fact that you saw marketing for the new season of the Sopranos and then again when the DVD is released doesn't really tell us anything about the vagaries of comic book marketing.

    You say you don't care about DC's marketing, but that's because you don't really rely on it. Sites like CBR and Newsarama are the extent of comic book marketing that really affects a DM store. But if DC is trying to reach new readers--and like I said, I doubt that this particular GN is the best fact to put forward,--DC needs to make sure that as many new customers find out about it.

    And despite the number of "civilians" that came in and bought Civil War #2, or Cap #25, or Obama Spider-man, very few of those seem to have come back for Civil War #3, or Cap #26, or the next issue of Spider-man. So either the comics were terrible enough that they weren't interested in finding out what happened next or they were buying comics they thought would be collector's item--the next Death of Superman.

    Because civilians are, by and large, not interested in buying a story in sixths one month at a time. A graphic novel is the best way to get new readers to actually read comics, because it seems a lot like other things that civilians are familiar with. Now, you and DC would likely have made more money if they serialized SEO first, but it doesn't really address the new reader issue that the Earth One initiative was created to address. I maintain that if DC gets only one bite at the mainstream news apple--doing so to sell an OGN instead of a single issue is a much smarter decision.

  4. #34
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    Default The Future...

    Interesting article.

    I think much of the criticism of the article is missing the point about the OGN not being the future of comics.

    The mainstream media coverage was brought up numerous times. One would expect coverage for a gimmick like SEO, but if the OGN is the future then we can expect Marvel and DC to be putting out multiple OGN's each month. You honestly expect the media to cover each one? I think not.

    So once the OGN becomes commonplace what have you gained? Nothing. I really do not see how OGN's are going to make civilians more likely to buy in.

    I have to side with you on this one Brian.

  5. #35

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    Quote Originally Posted by Brian Hibbs View Post
    I guess I'm being less than clear in this example, because I didn't specify more -- if I want to watch a new original series on Showtime or HBO, I have two options: 1) Subscribe to HBO, or 2) wait for the box set to come out. AFAIK, there is no Hulu, or iTunes or anything else for current active new series because HBO's business model depends on you subscribing to the network.

    This is how it works, and its hard to see that changing because then HBO wouldn't have the money to produce those shows.
    Except, of course, there's at least two other options. Not everyone regards them as ethical, but I have reason to suspect they're really quite popular.

    For that matter, the HBO model isn't the only one, when it comes to TV. There's also the BBC model -- centralized subscriber revenue budgeted out -- with nothing at all actually sold until the box set hits the stands (except maybe iTunes; and now they're looking at the world market for the BBC's own iPlayer -- look for a brand war to hit the US courts any day now).

    And the UK socialized model might not seem that germane, but the capitalist model isn't so different. You pay your cable money into the pool, and then various layers of decision-maker pick stuff to be made/broadcast -- and you the customer takes your chances.

    So the model is illuminating, but what it illuminates is this:

    Customer walks into the store with forty bucks burning a hole in his/her pocket. Customer leafs through all the comics on the rack, pausing to scan a few more closely, and maybe read two or three straight through, because that way customer gets his/her money's worth (and an afternoon's entertainment) before walking out with two trade paperbacks.

    That's the TV-serialization model. So it's hard to see exactly how it benefits a direct market retailer.
    one of the highest principles of America is that we're a nation of people from different backgrounds living in equal dignity and mutual loyalty - Eboo Patel.

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