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Barney bets $20 mil on video beating the B.O. tenfold

PolyGram is banking on a big hit in the kidvid industry September 1 with the direct-to-sell-through video release of Barney's Great Adventure: The Movie. Senior VP of marketing, Ken Graffio, says PolyGram expects to sell three to five million copies of...
August 1, 1998

PolyGram is banking on a big hit in the kidvid industry September 1 with the direct-to-sell-through video release of Barney’s Great Adventure: The Movie. Senior VP of marketing, Ken Graffio, says PolyGram expects to sell three to five million copies of the video. With an estimated street price of $22.95, this projection translates into a gross revenue of between US$69 million and US$114 million, far in excess of the feature’s box office revenues of US$12 million.

Since the movie’s theatrical debut in April, the Barney brand has faced some stiff competition in the preschool market from properties like Teletubbies, Blue’s Clues and The Big Comfy Couch. In order to pump up the purple dino’s popularity, PolyGram has launched a US$20 million dollar promo campaign targeted primarily at moms of preschoolers.

Luv’s, which did its first entertainment license and tie-in for the feature film, is back on board for the video release, offering a premium on seven million diaper packages. Polaroid, TDK and Kellogg are sponsoring an ‘I Love You’ singing contest in 2,300 U.S. Wal-Mart stores on September 12. Kellogg will follow up with a Barney cereal bowl giveaway with purchase. Smuckers is offering Barney pajamas with purchase, specially marked on three million grape jelly jars. To round out the campaign, the video will be encoded for interactive play on Microsoft’s Barney Actimates doll.

PolyGram plans to continue its push into the fourth quarter to maintain the video’s profile during the holiday season.

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