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Lionsgate drives DVD, Blu-ray sales by offering mobile rewards

Independent movie studio Lionsgate is driving sales of its new DVD and Blu-ray releases by offering rewards to consumers who scan their products in retail stores.

The entertainment studio partnered with CheckPoints LLC, creator of the CheckPoints mobile shopping and rewards application, to deliver mobile offers and product information via smartphones to consumers while they shop. Consumers can use their handsets to access DVD and Blu-ray content, watch trailers and earn CheckPoints virtual currency in exchange for interacting with new products.

“We view this as a mobile circular for DVDs and Blu-rays,” said Anne Parducci, executive vice president of marketing and family entertainment at Lionsgate, Santa Monica, CA. “We’ve always promoted in-store circulars—that’s always the business we’ve been in, and we loved how this was bringing circulars to mobile.

“We wanted to build awareness for our titles, and what CheckPoints is doing is fun and has a lot of potential,” she said. “Anything that can get the consumer in the store, heading to the DVD/Blu-ray section and picking up titles is compelling for us to try and continue to do.

“We want to get in early, monitor the results, get a basis of learning and hopefully continue to partner with them in the future to build a compelling channel for promotion of home entertainment.”

Lionsgate is a global entertainment company with a presence in motion picture production and distribution, television programming and syndication, home entertainment and family entertainment. It has a library of approximately 13,000 motion picture and television titles.

The studio currently has 15 shows on more than 10 networks spanning its prime time production, distribution and syndication businesses, including “Mad Men”, “Weeds” and “Nurse Jackie,” along with recent series such as “Blue Mountain State” and the syndicated series “Tyler Perry’s House Of Payne,” its spinoff “Meet The Browns,” “The Wendy Williams Show” and “Are We There Yet?”

Its feature film business produced “The Expendables,” “The Last Exorcism,” “Kick Ass,” “Precious” and “Tyler Perry’s Why Did I Get Married Too?”

Based in Venice, CA, CheckPoints recently recorded more than 1 million bar code scans with 600,000-plus users since launching four months ago.

Lionsgate joins Unilever, Energizer, Seventh Generation, Belkin, Tyson Foods, Frito-Lay, SoyJoy, Kmart, and Arby’s as a featured brand.

Mobile engagement at the point of sale
Using CheckPoints, consumers can scan the bar codes of new DVD and Blu-ray home entertainment releases from Lionsgate and earn points redeemable for real-world rewards. 

Additionally, application users will have access to exclusive offers and movie previews on their smartphones.

Titles in the CheckPoints promotion include television dramas such as Mad Men and Weeds, family shows such as Timmy Time and Thomas and Friends, fitness titles including Jillian Michaels and theatrical releases such as the upcoming The Next Three Days.

Ms. Parducci said that this is an opportunity for Lionsgate to reach consumers in a new way, right in the aisles of the store, where purchasing decisions are made. She said that this technology increases the likelihood of purchase and creates brand engagement. 

The CheckPoints application is available as a free download from the Apple App Store and Android Market. It offers shoppers rewards for visiting virtually any store in America and discovering products there.

Shoppers can unlock exclusive content such as games and recipes each time they scan the UPC of a featured item, with no purchase necessary. 

Lionsgate is tracking the results of this initiative closely to glean as many learnings as possible and optimize the  campaign on the fly.

“We launched with five different types of product because we wanted to see which kinds of consumers will engage with what,” Ms. Parducci said. “We’re rotating our products through CheckPoints to see which retail channels and products are resonating the most, how many people actually redeem the offer that we have, including dollars-off mobile coupons.

“We are encouraging people to buy at retail, which are metrics we can measure, and so far I’m pleasantly surprised by the number of scans,” she said. “Engaging with CheckPoints is a fun activity and the rewards are compelling—they offer great value to the consumer.

“Our sales are directly tied to our marketing efforts, and we’re seeing a bump when we are marketing to fans and database lists through applications.”

Final Take
Mark DiPaola, cofounder/CEO of Checkpoints