I went to Target today looking for some shorts and “The Untouchables” on DVD. I succeeded on both counts, and even found an extra pair of shorts, an extra DVD and some new mascara to try. Anyway, back to my story.
Target is currently running a promotion of DVDs tied in to VH1’s “I Love the 80s” for $7.50 each. The wall display included seminal 80s movies like “Airplane!”, “Pretty in Pink”, “Ferris Bueller’s Day Off”, “Better Off Dead”, “Crocodile Dundee”, and the two I purchased: “The Untouchables” and “The Explorers.” I’d have squealed with joy if “Flight of the Navigator” was also there, but it wasn’t. There were many more, but I thought two would be enough for today. Other positives: good selection, low price, and each comes with a CD of some 80s music.
What’s very disappointing is what they’re doing with the marketing. I’m not a marketing guru by any means, but it’s what I do for a living (I was actually promoted earlier this week, but that’s work life, so I didn’t blah-blah all about it here – but I must be doing something right). Back to my analysis of their marketing efforts.
The packaging is kind of lame and 80s – and that’s actually fine by me; I get it. They want to tie them together as a series, so each DVD has a similar design treatment framing the actual movie art, as seen below:
If they’re actually supposed to be related to the “I Love the 80s” show (which is what the overly helpful Target clerk said, after practically spitting in excitement over the fact that they included “Friday the 13th”) they should have included a VH1 logo; it would’ve made the artwork seem a bit less cheesy and bit less “some dude designed these to match a pair of swim trunks he owned in 1985.”
Perhaps it’s not actually tied into the show or perhaps Viacom didn’t want to use the VH1 trademark/brand identity in that way. All the movies (at least the ones I could remember and checked on IMDb) are from Paramount (which merged with Viacom not too long ago) so they’re all the same company in the end and I don’t think there would be too much trouble getting that done. Either way, fine – this is just my observation and opinion. I would’ve leveraged that brand and placed the logo somewhere on the package.
In any event, I wanted to look them up and see what other movies were being released in the series, so I went to the website listed on the outside of the DVD case (The80sonDVD.com).
It’s a lame-ass landing page on many accounts. Shot from today, below (I’m HOPING that it will change this week):
Yes, The80sonDVD.com was designed by a 3rd grader using Microsoft FrontPage.
Never mind that it’s July 6th and the awesomeness should’ve started almost a full week ago. Never mind that the site should be about the series, and not just the one DVD. Never mind the retina-searing use of lime green and the lamest headline ever. If you’re going to make the promise of total awesomeness, you’d best deliver on it, my friends.
Lastly, if you click on Matthew Broderick’s youthfully mischievious face, you’re taken to a Facebook page (!!!) where you can become a fan of the movie. That’s it.
Opportunities missed: countless. A simple site with a bit of content would have been a good move; nothing extravagant – say, a list of movies to be included in the series, plot synopses (the usual stuff you’d see on Amazon, etc.) and perhaps some movie trivia. The wastefulness bothered me enough that I was moved to devote an entire post to it. So there!
Also – that bonus music CD? Four songs, and you get the same CD with every DVD you buy. And I already owned two of the four songs. Boo-hiss.
Still, I’m glad I got these movies. I’m going to watch “The Untouchables” right now for a little Connery/Costner/Pacino fix.