007 Hits Tivo, Courtesy of Best Buy

Buoyed by the success of its first TiVo promotion, Best Buy has returned to the personal video recorder (PVR) with a two-week campaign to showcase the James Bond collector-edition DVD set.

The promotion, which began this week, is part of Best Buy’s “All About Bond” campaign, which is timed to coincide with the release of both the DVD collection and the new 007 film, Die Another Day.

In conjunction with Bond distributor MGM, Minneapolis-based Best Buy created a series of two-minute Bond mini-films: the best of the Bond’s lady friends; the best Bond gadgets; and the best Bond chases and explosions. TiVo’s 400,000 subscribers can access the vignettes via the TiVo Showcase, which provides branded entertainment from advertisers.

“It’s really a new and exciting way to offer additional content and allow people to spend more time with your brand,” said Mollie Weston, manager of production services at Best Buy. “The people that are using this technology are the people we want to be reaching.”

The Bond vignettes are also running on Cox Communications’ digital-cable service in San Diego, as well as on TechTV.

The Bond promotion follows up on TiVo’s May “Go Mobile” campaign, which featured clips of Sheryl Crow singing two singles from her “C’mon, C’mon” album. Users were lured to the showcase via 30-second commercials that ran on MTV. TiVo users could click on the tag to go to the showcase, which also featured advertainment relating to Best Buy products.

At the end of the Bond trailer, users are invited to learn more about the product. When they click, Best Buy will send them an email that includes a link to the Bond section of the Best Buy Web site. It’s not exactly pure interactive TV, but rather close.

With TiVo, Best Buy can find out how much time users spend with the brand and what they interacted with. The “Go Mobile” campaign, for instance, had a 63 percent impression rate, with viewers spending an impressive average of 3:36 with the brand.

“In an opt-in environment, you need to first entertain and selling is second,” Weston said. “Driving loyalty is really key.”

Weston said a major reason Best Buy has been an early advertiser on TiVo is that it is trying to learn about the medium — what works and what does not.

“It’s a response to the idea that people’s lives are changing dramatically because of technology,” she said. “We as advertisers need to look at how we advertise.”

While Tivo and other PVR makers like ReplayTV have received much attention, the numbers of users remains small, around a million. According to researcher Screen Digest, that will grow to 15 million in 2006, accounting for 14 percent of U.S. households.

TiVo recently reported it would add fewer subscribers this quarter than the same period last year — the first time subscriber growth has declined in TiVo’s three-year history.

Weston said this would change once the economy picked up and more early adopters entered the market.

“As soon as things start to turn around, this is going to explode,” she said. “We are looking to this to: a, learn, and b, partner and help shape the medium.”

The Bond campaign runs through Nov. 15, and Best Buy is gearing up for a new TiVo promotion to push for the holidays later this month.

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