Blockbuster announces no more late-fees

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Big C

Blockbuster announces no more late-fees

Post by Big C » Tue Jan 11, 2005 4:02 pm

:shock: I am dumbfounded.

This is without a doubt the stupidest marketing move I've ever heard in my life. No late fees? How will Blockbuster ever make profit again? No one will return a movie if there's no late fee! This is going to lose them so much money so quickly they won't know what hit them.

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Post by Supro » Tue Jan 11, 2005 4:05 pm

I read their policy on their site and it said that if you don't return the movies within 7 days of the due date, then the rental will become a sale. Ooooh. They got you there.
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Post by Tha619 » Tue Jan 11, 2005 4:05 pm

I read an article on this about a month ago. It's a great idea.

Big C

Post by Big C » Tue Jan 11, 2005 4:07 pm

Ahh I did not hear that. Well, better get that stockpile of movies out of my safe. Sorry Blockbuster! :oops:

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Post by Just_Bring_It » Tue Jan 11, 2005 4:18 pm

It's good and bad at the same time. We were just discussing this in my Marketing class the other day. Obviously a high point is that they probably will be getting more customers come in now.

However on the other hand, BlockBuster has a certain amount of videos/DVDs/etc., and if people are constantly just taking them, and not returning them on the due date, it may cause problems, as other people would want to take out the same movie, and they might not have it due to that one person not returning it on the correct date. I still think late fees are the better choice in the end.
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Post by Piggins » Tue Jan 11, 2005 4:20 pm

This is good because we always return movies late ( by accident of course.) But we are never a week late.
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Post by Tha619 » Tue Jan 11, 2005 4:21 pm

Piggins wrote:This is good because we always return movies late ( by accident of course.) But we are never a week late.
We have been before. Once we returned a movie nearly 2 weeks late because we lost it, and dad bitched at mom for like 10 minutes because it was nearly $20 in late fees or something.

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Post by The_Prophet » Tue Jan 11, 2005 4:33 pm

Sorry to say, but Family Video owns all.

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Post by PastorofMuppets » Tue Jan 11, 2005 4:41 pm

i think its awesome and its great for me although i question it as a business move, considering that late fees have to account for a huge part of business. I guess if less people are renting that would be even worse

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Post by Thuganomics Doctor » Tue Jan 11, 2005 7:02 pm

Well, it's good for me because my parents aren't paying for the rental. :lol: This is both good and bad. Good because if it's an hour late or something, there's no problem. But this is bad because people will be keeping their movies for much longer. Still, I would've kept late fees. JMO though.

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Post by Phoenix88 » Tue Jan 11, 2005 7:08 pm

I like this idea, I go to Blockbuster every once in a while, and I'm not a big fan of late fees, so this is good.

But my favorite place to rent videos is some drug stor a couple blocks down from blockbuster. They have so many old wrestling videos (late 80's-mid 90's), it's f***ing awesome
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Re: Blockbuster announces no more late-fees

Post by WallsOfJericho » Tue Jan 11, 2005 7:50 pm

Big C wrote::shock: I am dumbfounded.

This is without a doubt the stupidest marketing move I've ever heard in my life. No late fees? How will Blockbuster ever make profit again? No one will return a movie if there's no late fee! This is going to lose them so much money so quickly they won't know what hit them.
I am a former manager at Blockbuster and I have to say that this is a good and a bad move. First and foremost, Blockbuster hasn't been making a profit for a few years I believe. Even if they have been their revenues have been way down, and dropped significantly last winter, and this is only going to continue with in-demand PPV service, as well a other choices such as netflix and other rental stores. Late fees were obviously the largest complaint we would get, but the majority of people paid them, and believe it or not, for every customer that BBV lost because of them, they would gain at least two more the same day through new membership.

The idea behind this is that customers that are pissed off about late fees will come back to the stores and be happy again. The only problem here is that most of those customer's are already perfectly happy going to another video store, or using PPV, or an online service, hence defeating the purpose of eliminating late fees, at least from a purely financial stance(which are at least 10-20 percent of the company's revenue, if not more). Things get even messier when you consider that the company has increased prices on the initial rental period, to help compensate some of that lost revenue, pissing off even more customers, and likely driving some away.

From a marketing perspective it's a good ploy, but I think more people are just going to shake their head. The thing is, not much has really changed for BBV, except for lost revenue. They are making it sound like charging you for the movies after a week is new. Not the case at all. With late fees you had 10 days to bring a movie back before they stopped charging late fees. Then the movie was sold to your account anyways.

The funniest part about this ridiculous marketing scheme is that this all stemmed from Blockbuster's CEO getting pissed off at being the butt of late night jokes on Jay Leno's talk show. Nice way to build your business strategy, let Jay Leno's jokes lead the way. Blockbuster will be out of business or nicely downsized in the next 10 years.
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Post by Ghetto Blaster » Tue Jan 11, 2005 9:32 pm

I have Blockbuster to thank for 7 years of a little note on my credit report saying that I was turned into a collection agency. Fortunately, I think I've already served 4 of those years.

My brother while at college grabbed my card and rented a movie once without telling me of course and returned it to the wrong store. Well, the store that rented the movie to him never called me or sent a letter and the first I even hear about this is when I get a call from a collection agency. I pay the fee immediately and call BlockBuster to find out what the heck happened and they called another store in the area and fond the movie.

So when trying to buy a house this month I have this nice little note on one of my credit reports saying "Derogatory public record or collection filed". Fortunately the rest of my credit is great and I qualified for the best loan but one of my scores came up considerable lower for a movie rental.

Rant over.
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Post by WallsOfJericho » Tue Jan 11, 2005 9:48 pm

Ghetto Blaster wrote:I have Blockbuster to thank for 7 years of a little note on my credit report saying that I was turned into a collection agency. Fortunately, I think I've already served 4 of those years.

My brother while at college grabbed my card and rented a movie once without telling me of course and returned it to the wrong store. Well, the store that rented the movie to him never called me or sent a letter and the first I even hear about this is when I get a call from a collection agency. I pay the fee immediately and call BlockBuster to find out what the heck happened and they called another store in the area and fond the movie.

So when trying to buy a house this month I have this nice little note on one of my credit reports saying "Derogatory public record or collection filed". Fortunately the rest of my credit is great and I qualified for the best loan but one of my scores came up considerable lower for a movie rental.

Rant over.
Did you get the number to Blockbuster's credit agency? Because it isn't supposed to work that way. Their collection agency isn't supposed to affect anyone's credit, only serve as a scare tactic to get people to pay their bills. Granted, it sounds like this happened before my time with the company, but I dealt with several cases like this, and even had customer's who called the credit agency while in the store. That's a bullshit tactic on Blockbuster, and if it can be saved, call the credit agency and bitch up a storm and you can likely get it removed. If you've already done that they are just a bunch of bastards, and are another reason I hope the company goes under, despite working there for two plus years.
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Post by LondonChick62 » Tue Jan 11, 2005 10:01 pm

toonamil wrote:I read their policy on their site and it said that if you don't return the movies within 7 days of the due date, then the rental will become a sale. Ooooh. They got you there.
I figured there had to be a catch somewhere when I first heard about this. And when I went to the site myself, lo and behold. :P

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Post by WallsOfJericho » Wed Jan 12, 2005 1:22 am

TVS wrote:JBI brought up a point that had me scratching my head when I first heard of this and I think WOJ can agree with me on this... How is BBV supposed to accurately forecast when the movie will be returned?
They can't, but in some ways it's really no different than the way things were before. The majority of movies and games were always turned in on times, and I doubt that will change. Most people just don't want movies sitting around their house.

There were times when we'd have a limited quantity of a movie (Bridget Jones's Diary when it first came out[/quote] on video for example), and we would be able to easily look at where each movie was in the computer. Using BJD, we only had about 15 copies of that movie when it first came out, all two night rentals, versus say 200 copies of Pirates of the Caribbean when that first came out. For large movies tracking won't be any different, but for smaller, and newer, titles the only thing people will be able to say is "Well that was due yesterday, but it could come back some time this week." Not very different from before. The only thing that could really be done to combat this is to buy more copies of the movie. There are obvious drawbacks to that (lack of shelf space, extra costs with no extra revenue to back it, etc.)
If after 7 days it becomes a "purchase", how can they manage their inventory properly? The possibility of running out a video will greatly increase.
Unless Blockbuster has changed the way they control their inventories since May, this really isn't an issue for the company. Like I said before, movies that weren't return have always become purchases, it just happens sooner than before with this new policy. Rather than collecting late fees for 10 days, you have a week where you get charged nothing. Then after that week the movie will sell itself to your account automatically and remove the copy number from the rental inventory. Inventory management really doesn't change in that respect.

The real bitch will become when people start bringing back movies they've had for 8 days or longer. Then at that point the movie has been removed from rental inventory completely, so it has to be scanned back into the system as a new product (more or less) and assigned a new copy number. It's not really a hard process, but it's a pain in the ass. There were enough problems that Blockbuster had with it before, and I'm sure it's only going to get worse with this new policy.
Doesn't BBV have a policy on their new videos that says "if it's not in stock, you get a rain check for a free rental of that video"? Telling people that there's no more late fees will cost them hundreds of thousands in rain checks, nationwide.
Another attempt at a clever marketing ploy by BBV. They do guarantee titles, and if those titles are out they give away rain check coupons, but they only guarantee specific titles, and over the past two years when I worked for them the titles they guaranteed fell into two categories:

1. The movies that no one wanted to rent
2. The movies that had so many copies it was near impossible for the store to run out of them.

Case in point, about this time last year a movie called "In Hell" starring Jean Claude Van Dam came out. Had anyone heard of this movie? Probably not. I'm a pretty big movie buff, and I hadn't heard of it in my life. This movie was guaranteed in stock. I think we ran out of it once, on the first weekend. Probably because no one knew what the hell it was and figured it had to be decent if it was guaranteed in stock. After that it sat on the shelf with that "Guaranteed in Stock" shelf-liner for probably two months before another movie took it away from it. Then you'd have a movie like "Catch Me If You Can" that wouldn't be guaranteed. I'm not one hundred percent sure if CMIYC was guaranteed, but I don't think it was.

Then there's the other extreme. Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers. My store got 350 copies of that movie on DVD, and guaranteed it. I don't think we ever had more than 100 off the shelf at one time. This happened constantly with LOTR, The Matrix movies, and a movie like Bad Boys 2.

The Guaranteed in Stock thing is nothing more than a marketing scheme to get people in the stores, but after you've seen it work you know it's just a farce.
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Post by Steven21 » Wed Jan 12, 2005 6:23 am

I think it's a stupid idea if I hired a movie from Blockbuster I would keep it for the week and lend it out to other people who would then not hire the movie.
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Post by Cobra_R » Wed Jan 12, 2005 7:33 am

Blockbuster is doing this as an attmept to compete more with Net Flics

Wait a second i rented a game and it was past it's due date so they cycled it over to the next rental peroid. So if it was 6 bucks I know owe 12 because I kept it 2 rental peroids.

The old policy was if you didn't call blockbuster and tell them you were going to keep it anotherrental peroid, then they would charge you an late fee for each day until you return it or called them and tell them you were going to keep it for a next rental peroid which you satill would have had to pay the late fee the day you didn't call them and tell them you were keeping it for another rental peorid.

Now with now late fees you don't have to worry about paying late fees it just cycles over to the next rental peroid.

This is a great move on Blockbusters part once you understand it.
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Re: Blockbuster announces no more late-fees

Post by BioticZombie » Sun Nov 25, 2012 5:13 am

People used to go through all this trouble to watch movies? Oh god the horror.
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Re: Blockbuster announces no more late-fees

Post by Legend_Killer » Wed Nov 28, 2012 1:07 am

How do you find this stuff?
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