thank you idw for your continued support of arah

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thank you idw for your continued support of arah

Postby cashel » Sun Dec 04, 2011 3:57 pm

this really is my gi joe and i believe with more publisizing and/or stories that turn the mythos on its ear it could work its way up the monthly ratings. i have to admit, i'm not the biggest fan of the new universe but i have noticed that arah is selling better than snake-eyes and i hope the steady climb up the charts continues. this is the one book i look forward to month after month. interviews at cbr, etc might not hurt. just one old fan's suggestions. do with it what you will.
Cobra is the allegorical " transparent administration" that has already won the war. They control the media- education- public opinion- the very govt. Itself. G.I. Joe is theatre and cannot win a p.c. battle lost years ago. Ask mainframe.
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Postby Hellstrom » Sun Dec 04, 2011 4:29 pm

You mean sales right? Not ratings? Or are IDW confusing you labeling the book as a "season"? :lol: G.I.Joe will NEVER climb past where you see it now in sales ever again. It might rise and fall a little, but never more then a couple 100 copies. That's the sad truth. No amount of varient covers will help either.
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Postby cashel » Thu Dec 29, 2011 5:19 pm

My point was the real american title is currently outselling snake eyes and cobra. This makes me happy as I am 37.
Cobra is the allegorical " transparent administration" that has already won the war. They control the media- education- public opinion- the very govt. Itself. G.I. Joe is theatre and cannot win a p.c. battle lost years ago. Ask mainframe.
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Postby shanecdavis » Thu Dec 29, 2011 6:57 pm

I am also VERY happy at IDW's continued support for ARAH. It's still amazing to me that we are now approaching issue 175, with 200 barely over two short years away. Having Mr. Hama continue the Marvel run really has been a dream of mine for years, especially during the DDP years.

I will agree somewhat with Hellstrom though about sales. I wouldn't expect any big gains in readership as long as comics are restricted mainly to subscriptions and comic book stores. Just not enough exposure. That said, I have been told many times that IDW is happy with sales and I think it's pretty obvious when you consider we are getting FOUR monthly titles from top notch talent.
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Postby CrazyK » Thu Dec 29, 2011 10:16 pm

I'm going to nitpick something here, and please do not take this personally, shanecdavis, as I don't think it is something you meant to bring up; but you used the word "exposure" in the following response to the relatively low sales of GI JOE comics:

Just not enough exposure.


I've heard this sentiment from many comics fans when they lament the low numbers of comics in general. "Not enough exposure" or "Not enough advertising" is the rallying cry of those that seem to think that if Wolverine was on every bus stop bench and Green Lantern was on the side of every downtown building, we would all be back in the Promised Land of 1991.

But, let me ask you this: when have comic book characters EVER received as much exposure as they have now? Wolverine, Iron Man, The Hulk, Green Lantern, Superman, Captain America, Spider-Man and Batman HAVE been on every street corner for better parts of the last, what, ten summers? Batman: Dark Knight is one of the biggest box office winners of all time, making nearly a BILLION dollars world wide. The Avengers is possibly the most anticipated movie since that Batman sequel. Even our GI Joes had their own MOVIE.

And comics are all over the television as well. Batman has had three separate tv series in that same span. The Justice League had two successful runs not too long ago, and Young Justice currently airs on CN. The Avengers have a cartoon on Disney XD and Spider-Man and will join them early in 2012. G4 currently has, I think, 4 imported anime series based on Marvel characters as well. And, of course, our Joes had a run, too.

Not to mention the fact that we can find super-hero tee shirts and other paraphernalia at our local Targets and Wal-Marts. Thousands of students show up to school every day in this country sporting Cap's shield or Superman's S on their shirt. There are at least seven separate toy lines featuring comic characters in every action figure toy aisle in America. And comic heroes and villains have been featured as part of toys aimed at smaller children, like Fisher Price's Imaginext toys, as well.

Yet, comic sales still plummet. DC brass said in one of their SDCC panels that "The New 52" initiative was a direct response to seeing most of their books selling under 20,000 copies a month. Marvel has recently gone through a "Cancel-pocalypse" where they are slashing their monthly output.

"Exposure" is not going to "save" comics.

Comic companies try desperately to "cash in" on what they think will be a surge coming with every movie released, with the coming "exposure," but it never materializes. Marvel changes it's books right around the release to have "reader-friendly" storylines running in the months around opening day and also floods the market with books starring those characters. There were, I believe, 273 Thor and Cap titles last May-Aug! And Marvel's upcoming Avengers Assemble title (or whatever it's called) is a MU Continuity book that just happens to star the same team we will see on the big screen next summer.

Alas, talk to any comic shop owner you can find and they will tell you, this does NOTHING to boost sales. And it has the same effect on bringing in new readers: none. Sure, maybe a few dozen people see "Thor" and think "I want more" and walk into a comic shop (if they can find one). But when an industry needs thousands upon thousands of new devotees to sustain itself, 150 new readers every summer is not going to cut it.

There are three things holding comics back (in my opinion, anyway):
1) Price
2) Price
3) Price

After that, there are debatable detractors like "bad" books being the most popular, the inaccessibility of a universe (which I think is SEVERELY overblown), the "clique" mentality of the fanboy community and the lack of good service in many shops . But exposure is not even on the list. We can advertise the hell out of every single comic book and character and it would not make ANY difference as long as the product itself is just too damn expensive for the casual fan.

Sorry... Just ranting. I now return you to your regularly scheduled thread.
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Postby Torpedo » Fri Dec 30, 2011 6:20 am

I don't think "exposure" is being aware of the characters and titles, which as you point out, can be seen in movies, television, T-shirts, video games, theme parks, etc.

I think "exposure" is making actual comic books more available and visible to the public. That is entirely the problem with Diamond and the direct market with comic book stores.

You said The Avengers is one of the most highly anticipated movies ever. Then why aren't Avengers comics for sale in movie theaters? Don't you think someone coming out of The Dark Knight Rises or G.I. Joe: Retaliation this summer might be inclined to buy a Batman or G.I. Joe comic if it's sitting on a rack at the concession stand? Isn't this exactly the kind of place where you might get new, young readers for comics?

Here's a more important question: Why aren't comics for sale at Wal-Mart? They used to be--that's where I got some of my very first comics--but they're not anymore. Wal-Mart is--by a wide margin--the largest retail chain in the world and comic books publishers do not have their product in these stores? That is just asking to be irrelevant and hemorrhage business.

The comic book publishers are beholden to Diamond and the small market "local comic stores". No one wants to abandon those small stores and force them out of business, but it's not a growth business model. And with publishing expanding digitally across the board, it's simply a failing business model.

If you want people to buy and read print comics, you can't ask them to come to the product, you have to bring it to them. That means putting comics back in major stores like Wal-Mart, grocery stores, convenience stores and gas stations, and movie theaters.
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Postby destro! » Fri Dec 30, 2011 12:08 pm

Torpedo wrote:If you want people to buy and read print comics, you can't ask them to come to the product, you have to bring it to them. That means putting comics back in major stores like Wal-Mart, grocery stores, convenience stores and gas stations, and movie theaters.


Yes, that and lowering the price. I agree the price is too high for new customers. Comics are the new cigarettes.
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Postby Hellstrom » Fri Dec 30, 2011 12:58 pm

I'll tell you price is a BIG consideration for me in my choice to drop Joe. That and space. I think I could be more accepting of what I don't want in the book if the price was lower, but this by NO means says I WANT Mass devices and shape shifting clones. Nor do I want 90% asinine chracters with no figures. And no toy vehicles I recognize in action battles. At $3.99 each for a 5 minute read at most? Yeah...I am getting picky. I am about to cut a few New 52 books and first on the list? The $3.99 Men at War. Well...anyway...
Diamond has a monoply on things and I think companies don't want newstand sales now cause those books have to be returnable if unsold. That's what I am thinking.
We are a dying breed...the comic book reader. I forsee a future where I am reading more novels. Those have not climbed as fast as comics do in price. :wink:
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Postby CrazyK » Sat Dec 31, 2011 12:42 am

Torpedo wrote:I don't think "exposure" is being aware of the characters and titles, which as you point out, can be seen in movies, television, T-shirts, video games, theme parks, etc.

I think "exposure" is making actual comic books more available and visible to the public. That is entirely the problem with Diamond and the direct market with comic book stores.

You said The Avengers is one of the most highly anticipated movies ever. Then why aren't Avengers comics for sale in movie theaters? Don't you think someone coming out of The Dark Knight Rises or G.I. Joe: Retaliation this summer might be inclined to buy a Batman or G.I. Joe comic if it's sitting on a rack at the concession stand? Isn't this exactly the kind of place where you might get new, young readers for comics?

Here's a more important question: Why aren't comics for sale at Wal-Mart? They used to be--that's where I got some of my very first comics--but they're not anymore. Wal-Mart is--by a wide margin--the largest retail chain in the world and comic books publishers do not have their product in these stores? That is just asking to be irrelevant and hemorrhage business.

The comic book publishers are beholden to Diamond and the small market "local comic stores". No one wants to abandon those small stores and force them out of business, but it's not a growth business model. And with publishing expanding digitally across the board, it's simply a failing business model.

If you want people to buy and read print comics, you can't ask them to come to the product, you have to bring it to them. That means putting comics back in major stores like Wal-Mart, grocery stores, convenience stores and gas stations, and movie theaters.



In the sense of "exposure=availability," yes, you are totally right.

Unfortunately it comes down to price, again. When I worked at Target, Marvel offered special editions of all of their "Ultimate" books to sell at the store. There were collections of 3-5 issues of any given title... and sold for nearly $10. We placed them in the end caps of the toy aisle where we sold action figures and Legos, and more in the magazine racks and the front lanes. After about two months, they were pulled, destroyed and never seen again. Out of the 100 or so copies we had in that time frame, we sold less than ten.

Being a Toy Lead at the time, I was able to ask "upstairs" about why they were pulled and never re-ordered. In speaking with a regional buyer, I was given the following points:

1) They were too expensive.
2) They cost too much to the average consumer.
3) They take up too much room compared to their value.

That's it. It was buried in a lot of industry speak, but it boiled down to the fact that the comic collections were taking space from $3-$6 magazines that may actually get out the door. They were too close to that magic "$10 Price Threshold" that consumers seem to fixate on (Target subscribed to a theory that customers think in terms of $10-$10-$10 when shopping, and that they will buy an item in multiples for $9 apiece, but won't touch it if it's $11... notice how quickly the Star Wars Vintage figures got down to $9 and change after they were first released at over $11?). And especially when a similar type item- magazines- were selling right next to them at nearly half the price.

I totally agree that the industry does a piss poor job of getting comics into areas other than comic shops. But part of that is due to how poorly they usually fare in those other avenues. Toys R Us has been selling comics for awhile now, and I would be interested to see how they are faring there. I have seen a few kids with them in their hands at the local TRU, but I do not know how many made it to the register. Most get mutilated at the rack and are of no interest to someone like you or me who will take the time and energy to track them down somewhere else.

And I think you are on to something with the idea of selling comics in the theater lobby this summer. Again, there are huge hurdles to jump over. Where are the racks placed? Out in the open in a busy theater is just inviting theft. Do we place them at the concession stands? But I would be afraid that very, VERY few theater chains are going to allow their concession stands to push slightly profitable product at the expense of even a second wasted to be used to get extremely profitable soda pop into someone's hands. And, again, price. A family of four headed to a Fri showing of Avengers is not getting in the DOOR for less than $30... closer to $50 here in SoCal. If they want food and drink, that can be almost $60 for the night. Is Mom or Dad REALLY going to fork over another $3-$4 for a 20 page comic?

If Marvel REALLY had the intelligence to look towards the future, they would bite the bullet and hire locals to hawk the books at the theaters. Commission four books: Avengers, Iron Man, Thor and Cap; and sell them for $1 apiece or all four for $3. They'd be 20 page "one and dones" and have stamps from local comic shops on the cover. They'd lose money in the short run... but imagine if they could hook just a FOURTH of the kids and teenagers that are going to see that movie in it's first week?
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Postby Torpedo » Sat Dec 31, 2011 8:55 am

CrazyK wrote:If Marvel REALLY had the intelligence to look towards the future, they would bite the bullet and hire locals to hawk the books at the theaters. Commission four books: Avengers, Iron Man, Thor and Cap; and sell them for $1 apiece or all four for $3. They'd be 20 page "one and dones" and have stamps from local comic shops on the cover. They'd lose money in the short run... but imagine if they could hook just a FOURTH of the kids and teenagers that are going to see that movie in it's first week?


I completely agree with you here. Publish some promotional issues you can sell cheaper to draw in new readers. I remember about ten years ago Marvel did a special selling Fantastic Four #60, the first issue by Mark Waid and Mike Wieringo, for a mere twenty-five cents. I never would have read a Fantastic Four book if not for that promo price because at the time I thought they were lame. Well, thanks to quarter price-tag and the excellence of Waid and Wieringo, I fell in love with the FF and I consider that #60 one of the greatest single issues ever created. And I don't think Marvel or DC have done anything like that in the ten years since.

But some movie related character books for a dollar each in a separate booth/stand in a theater lobby, possibly operated by local comic store owners/employees, could do wonders.
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Postby abner419 » Sat Dec 31, 2011 9:31 am

Torpedo wrote:
CrazyK wrote:If Marvel REALLY had the intelligence to look towards the future, they would bite the bullet and hire locals to hawk the books at the theaters. Commission four books: Avengers, Iron Man, Thor and Cap; and sell them for $1 apiece or all four for $3. They'd be 20 page "one and dones" and have stamps from local comic shops on the cover. They'd lose money in the short run... but imagine if they could hook just a FOURTH of the kids and teenagers that are going to see that movie in it's first week?


I completely agree with you here. Publish some promotional issues you can sell cheaper to draw in new readers. I remember about ten years ago Marvel did a special selling Fantastic Four #60, the first issue by Mark Waid and Mike Wieringo, for a mere twenty-five cents. I never would have read a Fantastic Four book if not for that promo price because at the time I thought they were lame. Well, thanks to quarter price-tag and the excellence of Waid and Wieringo, I fell in love with the FF and I consider that #60 one of the greatest single issues ever created. And I don't think Marvel or DC have done anything like that in the ten years since.

But some movie related character books for a dollar each in a separate booth/stand in a theater lobby, possibly operated by local comic store owners/employees, could do wonders.


+1 here

It seems like they attempt to do something like this with the Free Comic Book Day each May but they only give these away in comic book stores?!?! If they are walking into a comic book store then they are more than likely already into comics. How about getting these out to Wal-Mart, Target, K-Mart, etc! How about boys and girls clubs, the Y, hell how about public schools as a promotion on reading!

Take some lessons from local drug dealers - go TO the consumers, give them some for free, and then get them hooked.

And lower the price! You know, all my favorite comics are all printed on that cheap "newsprint" style!
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Postby destro! » Sat Dec 31, 2011 2:55 pm

And lower the price! You know, all my favorite comics are all printed on that cheap "newsprint" style!


I am not opposed to that paper at all...especially if it lowers the price.
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Postby Cyberstrike » Sun Jan 01, 2012 8:34 am

abner419 wrote:
Torpedo wrote:
CrazyK wrote:If Marvel REALLY had the intelligence to look towards the future, they would bite the bullet and hire locals to hawk the books at the theaters. Commission four books: Avengers, Iron Man, Thor and Cap; and sell them for $1 apiece or all four for $3. They'd be 20 page "one and dones" and have stamps from local comic shops on the cover. They'd lose money in the short run... but imagine if they could hook just a FOURTH of the kids and teenagers that are going to see that movie in it's first week?


I completely agree with you here. Publish some promotional issues you can sell cheaper to draw in new readers. I remember about ten years ago Marvel did a special selling Fantastic Four #60, the first issue by Mark Waid and Mike Wieringo, for a mere twenty-five cents. I never would have read a Fantastic Four book if not for that promo price because at the time I thought they were lame. Well, thanks to quarter price-tag and the excellence of Waid and Wieringo, I fell in love with the FF and I consider that #60 one of the greatest single issues ever created. And I don't think Marvel or DC have done anything like that in the ten years since.

But some movie related character books for a dollar each in a separate booth/stand in a theater lobby, possibly operated by local comic store owners/employees, could do wonders.


+1 here

It seems like they attempt to do something like this with the Free Comic Book Day each May but they only give these away in comic book stores?!?! If they are walking into a comic book store then they are more than likely already into comics. How about getting these out to Wal-Mart, Target, K-Mart, etc! How about boys and girls clubs, the Y, hell how about public schools as a promotion on reading!

Take some lessons from local drug dealers - go TO the consumers, give them some for free, and then get them hooked.

And lower the price! You know, all my favorite comics are all printed on that cheap "newsprint" style!


Back in the day when comics were sold regularly at newsstands, drug, grocery, and department stores the books that didn't sell would be returned to publishers and/or distributors they would have to give the store a refund for what wasn't sold.

So if Marvel for example had sent a store 10 copies of a book and only 2 copies sold they would have to refund the store for the 8 copies that didn't sell and they would also get those 8 copies sent back to either the publisher and/or the distributors.

With comic book stores they buy 10 copies and sell 2 they are stuck with the 8 copies that didn't sell, they can't get a refund or return them to the publisher and/or distributors.
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Postby Torpedo » Sun Jan 01, 2012 9:15 am

Cyberstrike wrote:With comic book stores they buy 10 copies and sell 2 they are stuck with the 8 copies that didn't sell, they can't get a refund or return them to the publisher and/or distributors.


And this is why a lot of comic stores, particularly smaller ones, don't order a lot independent books or titles from smaller publishers. They order the books they know will sell, like X-Men, Batman, Spider-Man, and all of the major events from DC and Marvel. Not only does this limit smaller publishers' chances to get their comics seen and sold, it stifles creativity and creates a formula for the big publishers. Oh, Deadpool is selling well this month? Quick, let's put out seven Deadpool titles this summer. Marvel will release nine monthly X-Men books, but they won't take a chance on a Werewolf By Night ongoing series. DC has eleven Bat-books but no Martian Manhunter or Adam Strange solo books.

For a time I frequented a smaller, somewhat-local comic store. The owner only ordered IDW, Dynamite, and Boom! comics that were specifically requested for pull-lists. So a casual customer who wandered in there for the first time would never even know G.I. Joe, Transformers, Zorro or Darkwing Duck comics even exist, but she could see a whole ass-load of Blackest Night comics.
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Postby Cyberstrike » Sun Jan 01, 2012 1:21 pm

Torpedo wrote:
Cyberstrike wrote:With comic book stores they buy 10 copies and sell 2 they are stuck with the 8 copies that didn't sell, they can't get a refund or return them to the publisher and/or distributors.


And this is why a lot of comic stores, particularly smaller ones, don't order a lot independent books or titles from smaller publishers. They order the books they know will sell, like X-Men, Batman, Spider-Man, and all of the major events from DC and Marvel. Not only does this limit smaller publishers' chances to get their comics seen and sold, it stifles creativity and creates a formula for the big publishers. Oh, Deadpool is selling well this month? Quick, let's put out seven Deadpool titles this summer. Marvel will release nine monthly X-Men books, but they won't take a chance on a Werewolf By Night ongoing series. DC has eleven Bat-books but no Martian Manhunter or Adam Strange solo books.

For a time I frequented a smaller, somewhat-local comic store. The owner only ordered IDW, Dynamite, and Boom! comics that were specifically requested for pull-lists. So a casual customer who wandered in there for the first time would never even know G.I. Joe, Transformers, Zorro or Darkwing Duck comics even exist, but she could see a whole ass-load of Blackest Night comics.



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