On the heels of Netflix announcing they are raising prices by up to sixty percent, Blockbuster is trying to provoke a mass exodus to their service. Blockbuster began rescuing upset Netflix customers by launching a limited time, nationwide promotion for all Netflix customers who switch to Blockbuster Total Access.
“Blockbuster quickly responded to the cries of Netflix customers,” said Michael Kelly, president of Blockbuster. “Blockbuster Total Access is Netflix ‘without the wait.’ The combination of DVDs by mail and unlimited in-store exchanges provides more than 100 million people living near Blockbuster stores immediate convenience and unparalleled choice.”
There are many additional benefits that Blockbuster Total Access provides over Netflix, including things like sooner availability of many new releases, unlimited in-store exchanges, game rentals included in their plans, and no additional charge for Blu-ray movies. The only thing this plan is missing will be the same thing missing from the new Netflix plan, unlimited streaming. Blockbuster is looking to keep it’s current on demand/pay-per-view streaming model.
In order to woo Netflix customers, those who “switch” to one of Blockbuster’s two most popular Total Access plans will receive a 30-day free trial. Once the free trial ends, customers can choose between the $9.99 per month, “1 Disc” at a time option, or $14.99 per month for “2 Discs” at a time. In other words, for the same price as Netflix’s by mail service,Blockbuster will offer much more.
To prove they are making the switch, Netflix subscribers are encouraged to visit www.blockbuster.com/helloblockbuster or bring in the tear-off from their Netflix mailer to a participating Blockbuster store.
This special offer for Netflix customers is run through Sept. 15, 2011, and can be signed up for in participating stores and at Blockbuster’s website.
Can this move reinvigorate the floundering Blockbuster business model? Will Netflix learn its lesson and offer an incentive to stay? Would people make the choice to use one service for by mail and one for streaming? Only time can tell.