Blockbuster to Tout Online Movie Rentals

NEW YORK Blockbuster this Wednesday breaks an interactive campaign to introduce people to its new Internet movie rental service.

The Dallas-based company last week launched an online offering, which lets people request three DVD rentals at once by mail for $19.99 a month. The service will likely compete with similar models from Netflix and Walmart.com.

Avenue A/Razorfish in Chicago is handling the online media, which includes sponsored-search listings; the aQuantive-owned unit was named Blockbuster Online’s digital media agency in early May. Moxie Interactive in Atlanta and imc2 in Dallas developed the creative on a project basis, said Blockbuster Online marketing manager Jenny Lang, adding that a permanent i-shop for Web creative could be named in the next month or two.

Banner ads, carrying the line, “The Movie Store at Your Door,” will appear across Excite, iVillage, American Greetings Network and AtomShockwave, among other properties. The push targets movie lovers by touting the service’s convenience, a two-week trial membership and two coupons that are redeemable at Blockbuster’s physical locations, said Lang.

This initial effort will run through Sept. 30, but there are plans to continue online media through the end of the year, an aQuantive representative said.

The campaign budget was undisclosed.

Blockbuster last week struck a partnership with MSN in which the Microsoft-owned Web property will offer the online rental service at msn.movies.com [IQ Daily Briefing, Aug. 12].