EP 3 - A Video Store In 2018? IS THIS REAL LIFE? Yes.

Friday, June 1st

Can you remember the last time you stepped foot in a Video store?  If you're a Family Video customer, you probably said YES!  One of the few if not the ONLY video store chain still standing in the U.S.  I talk with store manager Drew Seghers and Family Video District Manager Eric Berg about how they are able to remain profitable, and where they see the future of their video store business.  

00:17:28

Transcript - Not for consumer use. Robot overlords only. Will not be accurate.

Portions of rigs off the radio powered by cardinal with gravy dot com gravy one of the eight basic food groups and science magazines wonder beverage of 2017 dip your media and it cartilage that goggle gravy dot com. Pulling it into an adult content listener discretion isn't what you're about to hear his feet. Inside leftovers from rigs is spreading throughout his day since you probably hear everything that happens on the radio this. The stuff that happens off the radio. Rigs off. Through radio. Now here's your host hi and welcome to another episode of rigs off the radio this week we're going back in time given diet he's never video stars. I and then there. And there's still one standing even after blockbuster went down and all the other video giants and they still streaming. And you can still renting movies from your cable provider and your TV gather still a video store and as an adult section. I'm talking about family video. There's over 700 family video locations still around we talked to the managers of one of the remaining family videos and that district manager and a guy that oversees many stores how are they still surviving in this day and age who forget to find out. And we'll take a little trip down memory lane as well but first a message from one of our sponsors. It can be any substance can soon to provide nutritional support for an organism are you hungry try eating food available in stores food. Proud sponsor of rigs off the radio. Before you can sit on your couch in rent a movie in your underwear it get in the car and make a whole production of it drives to the video store. Remember all the slogans be kind rewind fee in stock guarantee. 3 evening pretzels. When he for our quick drop return. For Mary had to call the video store to find out pay to used to have a copy of speed starring Keanu Reeves in you don't. Damn it I get a tried to bar out of debt and stuck watching TV tonight it's fallen to remember the blockbuster video tingle. It's. The difference. Yeah I just played that I just hope I don't get sued by a bankrupt company over commercial that I ripped a fugitive from the nineteen hundred's but I digress while blockbuster was arguably. The biggest video rental place out there. There was quite a big competition back in the day and night out Gibbons from the race now in morning show remembers his video days from back in Jersey do it. Some of my fondest memories as a kid happen in the video store I governments out of 121000 people. Okay it's literally five square blocks in those five square blocks we had a wild video. We head West Coast video a West Coast video and of course we had a blocked. But that's still another blockbuster videos were gone and the only thing left was a family video. And they're all scattered across the midwest. Even a Wisconsin. My friend Bartley clear from our sports station 1057 FM the fan he remembers the family video of this family video was new when I was sixteen it was a new videos to. And one of my dreams I'm not making this up. I always thought I'm over there some day family video I'm just really liked it I like as a vehicle company ages was a nice lay out. There they did have a little bacteria that I'm never going into this one in west Dallas has an adult area by the way half totally and then an alarm rings when you open the door standing teams they wanted to rent they in the videos on Iraq now I never ended up working there. But I would always date night Saturday night's NB. Well let's go to family video and I would take my Mormon girlfriend and her comfort which didn't work out now on and we go to Stanley video and look for video of this that's what you do also wondering wired video stores so scarce I mean there's the obvious reasons with streaming and everything but they're still record stores I mean finalists still popular. Even cassette tapes are making a comeback everything these days is about convenience. Yeah in Stanley video is like opposite of that is right there's still many ways to get your movies and or content now givens was say in the same. But now you can go to the supermarket and go up through the red box and put your credit card in this press the button did its like this thing but when it more convenient. No that's why images it's not the people and the video is that and how they're still surviving with red box and Netflix and Hulu and amp apple and Amazon music and with ample apple Amazon prime everything within my girlfriend lives in Dallas right near the ambulance and the sixth everytime I drive I say hello because I want to show respect. And every time it's jam packed literally living on Saturday jam packed. You know I talk a lot about Stanley Citi put aid never banned in one cell. I walked into a family video 2 o'clock on a Wednesday not exactly a busy time of the day for any business let alone a video Stiller. I walked in and Sarah is the only employee in the store Sarah's on the phone she's following one of their customers that they'd been selected to win a free movie rental. And a Marcus pizza because there's a market as pizza right next door. There has to be a tie between the famine video on the Marcus I start asking questions this era which is have the answers she's more comfortable with me talking to the store manager drill. And their district manager Eric after some back and forth I finally set up a meeting with these two guys and meet him at distill or any of the conversation that we had. First of all this is the most ninety's they have ever had in my life I interview The Backstreet Boys earlier nominee video store so what I've 1999. And yeah. Welcome to rigs off the radio I'm here with that drew a Sager is the general manager for the west Alice. I'll let us know and we video and also the west on location both of them. Okay and then we're here it's Eric berg as well as the district manager whose C would you overseas pretty much everything everything from Kenosha through the southern end of the Appleton fox valley area and his and his family video is midwest based it looks like it's everything just hugs Lake Michigan all of your stores according to the maps on your website yeah Leo's Leo. As far as south as Texas and as Far East as New York really primarily meant less greatest event to Canada as well isn't so yeah how many stores total you know aren't around 73730. Family video stores are still around yeah that's amazing decade as an oven for how long repellents is obviously family owned. Stanley on an operating yes they've been around for more than thirty years and we've. There's kind of so the roots of the companies are are realistic you know we're realists at this company we vial out of commercial real estate put our own businesses into it okay and then yachts they get a handful of other business entities as well. In this property we also owned and operated the Marcos pizza that's two doors down from a so the family video Owens took more goes pizza and they are able to make awesome promotions such as you know Marko is now comrade now you can order pizza and a million them both delivered to your house drilling depth that's the tag team comma that everybody would want in the ninety's to tell. Exactly I paso and you said you are real estate companies and it sounds like that's where you involve your money comes from our most of your money away so we'll come from the revenue stream for family video because. And I was curious how much can be made in a video store anymore these days. The storm is still dig in revenue and yet we're not doing quite what we were at her peak around but I think. The industry perception right blockbuster close in the mile or close Hollywood clothes are on thought the video industry was doing poorly. In actuality we had record years I mean as they close we would we would gain revenue from them via so we went through a period whereas our competitors closed doors we had record spending years and and we're we're past that point now Reinemund we still do very very can. Can revenue employee and I mean I was your stores are still standing 700 stores has nothing to sneeze at him and a lot yet it's a big company in the name obviously diversified suite pizza. We cellphone stores via fitness stores without a bit of good hands and a bunch of different things that the roots in the foundation and all is definitely the video stored as where his wager clientele come from a night we'll kind of person with frequent the Stanley videos of the people that don't have Wi-Fi the people that can't afford to do that that's the thing is that people that. It's a little bit of every on entrance to our people come in there that have Netflix and other streaming programs that are still coming into rent movies they just love the nostalgia coming into the store and Michael was little reading a book would be absolutely and like talking to someone you know what we'll. What's a good movie you know red box is not gonna give your recommendation is that I'm hopeful Ehlers good film right. So we we have a ton of customers have a common Justin talk for associates see what's good and yes grab a movie. And we've a ton of customers that are regulars know my name with CNET. And a week you know we we freedom and a walk in the door and come fundamentally they're looking for. I can ask about the adult section as well. I thought we do have one there are guys that it's overly advertising for the items that are now he had no you don't but it's his eyes there is that something that's kind of a subject and in the boardroom I should we get rid of that should we Nat I'm how does that give markets or it's not fair grounds we do markets where we pulled that you knew it was just based on. On the needs of our customers of the people want and it's their Phnom. For those that don't. Ethically you know as long as people renting a negative talisman this morning yes sort of but I was still interest is how far they still. Profitable how his family video making money coming. Until they have to editing a hub video stores where so I went to figure out who'd they paid them movie companies to maintain the production companies how does that work so we buy everything. Now while the human trainer shows we don't know rate which is different than our competitors and a blockbuster to their revenue sharing model in the studio and on opponent film and it would would share the revenue and a Clinton. We're very differently by it we own and we manage it. We rented. You know for a period of time and and we eventually sell off most is that how is that legal through like a whole piracy thing is if Iran senior making money off venture doesn't reside with the company how does that work. So the first sale doctrine you know. It is kind of what what we operate under the first a doctor kind of states that once you buy something that's yours. You know Diaw is uses to you by car new and its six wheels off of and so the wields great it's it's your party to Hillary on that photograph or can't tell you can't take the wheels off of it. Right wants to about it dvd it's ours we can do it on what you're dominant in our case we choose to present our customer well that makes sense now when you put a ballot then it just. I think it's a fitting analogy because it helps people Strauss it's because there is intellectual property associated with the he's all right so renting a movie. Home six plus. Red box like a dollar 25 dollar fifty. I was wondering. How do their prices compare to the competition do they still charge by the rental do they have monthly subscription fees we can rent X amount of movies how does that festering uses up an account pomp and we just need a photo ID adventure telephone numbers from a on the Nielsen gets half awfully rentals for the first thirty days you know. Arm so I mean new releases are gonna run you about a dollar dollar fifty piece about. So competitive at a red box ya I supposedly for us with our box right on the next half ought to start is that. The sudden you can do it every month odds 999 depends how many can renew it at any time can get thirty days of actress rentals. Along with that we also stores that do have the Marcus BC also reported that the south America's pizza okay so. It's not a bad deal on the car more regular cost counseling is yet that doesn't enormous fan and I'll. They took the video of pizza for you this is true you've got people still calling the video store what is this 1996. I had to ask drew the store manager I still assessing late fees when people return their movies a week or a month later we do typically it's more like every rental fee than anything else OK so basically say you have a dollar shared. How to wrestle a dollar for five nice to bring that back a day later it's a dollar to bring about five days it's basically a rat's about you for the normal rental price for heartland I was curious as to where they find room to trim the fat in their company they obviously have to run very lean being a video store in the year 28 team how is it video store adapting in the modern age. Biggest Anemia foundation are my foundation of the company you're on your fifteen years so I've seen us. Literally stood with VHS tapes we have seen us transition a dvd in out of yeah. You are models absolutely change your from apparel standpoint we don't have the same personnel that we have Brad. Obviously copied a chain is based on realistic image a lot of stores were reducing square footage of video on routing and fitness stores or pizza stores or cellphone source here to our motto is absolutely doubt it you know announced. Occurred and our owners with being very. Having the foresight to think things through insurance C forward as to what what our business will be five or ten years from now sure I'm. I think video store square footage you'll continue to shrink hasn't yet another business model and a but this is still our bread and honored this is still where we make our money in the system where most of our customers. You guys are so invested in and you can tell as well and I had a friend they evidently talking to some people about how I was coming here and said. Although they feel knowing they're running a failing business now cycle if you think you're running a failing business here and I'll ask you obviously they know they gonna succeed they wouldn't be running the store so you guys succeeding yet. It's not disclose. Twelve years ago when I served full time with this company somebody asked that question like one million new year to gonna close. Our closing our business is an out as an estranged. Because they're different than what it was absolutely down. But we we've done a great job of adapting it to make sure that went the other day we still make a dollar for deaths were not. The shorter generally Anglia he'd it would make money obviously depth. A woman in a marked as pizza Sherlock since she's been talking to the cashier for the past couple minutes. Yeah it does is Bridget Bridget grabbing a movie for a customer in a place in order they are at stake and have a family video movie and a pizza delivered right to your house and as I was recording this it was a Friday so they were starting to pick up business is that still the busy time for video stores Friday nights and Saturday night's other other times during the week when their visions get out of school momma netted them networks have run insiders are busiest days Brian I'm the worst though others the crazier we get a hearing is crazy snowstorms. You name it you know people are sucked in the house them there looking for a source of entertainment and we did it very very busy. If I was glad I was talking to a corporate guy from Stanley videos like it figure out. Where is his mindset. Where in the video industry possibly a fall from here what is known next yes square footage is going now on you know we. We're obviously adding a new business and entities. To ask you I was fortunate enough and it's. Went back on an open no the Marcus pizza here and also LaMarcus peace and Waukesha Phnom site I've been able to manage across brands from Imus they've created opportunities. Mexico headed when I leave your eminent Oshkosh broken in a cell phone store there tumbled as the grand opening right yes I think we're gonna continue to introduce new business streams Saddam. Without losing our focus I mean again movies and games and and our customers here are the core of our business it's. Let's give us opportunities to do other things I'm opening cellphones will be our new avenue and guess who we open. In the last three weeks we opened fourteen new cellphone stores now across the company Hummer gold seal honored with amnesty your. A that's gone so we've we've got a lot of growth and an opportunity in that business for sudden I think it will continue to adopt an ends. And the ball until what is our business five years from now I think held up Tony different than what it is today. When you stream a movie it's always in stuff yeah not to worry about driving to the store that's not there I was curious if the family video store has trouble keeping movies and stop this location and I we we do hum on the weekends I mean usually the first week coming on real on the weekends it's mean it's it's that are missing you know we we rent on some titles and we take. Like that for example earlier held today through their copy depth for the auto and it's just. My cancer I believe you lose in the neighborhood lose friends and 45 on Blu-ray and probably. Of their own 54 on dvd plus that he is you rent Blu-ray dvd and for parents. Important to also sell and digital but it ITV coaches and for movies. As an artist that website family video that comes seems pretty active you can buy movies there and they seem to have a pretty sustainable revenue stream through their e-commerce we drop ship used. Women Torre directly from our stores to our customers so we're use fulfillment Saturn and we some more use movies and games on lineman in the most companies don't. That we do is really little or no overhead and on a warehouse and distribution center leadership restores when a customer goes the website and orders a copy. American made you know we'd colleagues. Look at him and Torrey trust company Leo to a story about some access this and we tell us store where it's going and they print and pocket and chip attractive customer. Becoming huge part of our business and it's become an increase in Brussels over the years let's builders to manage inventory levels across the company chair. Are sitting on some excess inventory that's an frost and Sullivan mine down you know and distributed as a customer you'll 550 copies of black panther. Runs a mouse and there was a SARS has died down you'll see those used. Himself announced it I your commerce sites some or it was a store camera distorts it nice to jump tomorrow towards to sell pretty well. Still sustainable look video store in the year 28 teen pretty insane right family video so if you ever longing for. Then made 1990s. And walking in the door with that. Lofted a put down the aisles and picking up the movie bring in the case up to the clerk finds some popcorn. He could still do it he can still live in the ninety's and check had a family video clearly they're not planning on going anywhere. Thank your check out this week's podcast next week. We get to know somebody very close to me. My life. He's an interesting character. We'll get to know her next week on the podcast so make sure you check it out. Thanks for less they have an excellent week or weekend or afternoon or morning or whenever the heck you're listening I'm breaks thanks for listening to rig just off the radio. Make good life decision.
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