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Thread: How Would You Feel About Mattel Passing On 2015 SDCC In Favor Of Other Advertising?

  1. #1
    Council Elder Tallstar's Avatar
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    How Would You Feel About Mattel Passing On 2015 SDCC In Favor Of Other Advertising?

    So I got to thinking how there probably aren't that many new collectors signing up for MOTUC subscriptions, seeing as how Mattel does the exact same thing every year with their annual appearance at SDCC. IMO, that's pretty much tapping an audience who already know about these figures. I'm wondering how you folks would feel about Mattel skipping one year to try something different? For example, instead of spending money to redress a statue, get folks to set-up and work the booth etc., maybe they redirect those funds into advertising a 2016 A-List Filmation mini-sub on billboards in major cities or something. You know, to try to get some casual/new fans on-board. I'm not saying it HAS to be that idea, though. Just something different than the usual.

    And if the various toy sites want to get pictures of the latest MOTUC offerings, maybe Mattel can send the prototypes to Power Con.
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  2. #2
    Heroic Warrior Stygian360's Avatar
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    I wouldn't see Mattel skipping SDCC as, A) even possible, B) a good thing on any level. SDCC is a great opportunity for open publicity for ALL of Mattel's product offerings, not just MOTUC. So whether they show up to tout WWE, Mattycollector, or Monster High Dolls, Mattel is still going to be there doing their thing. Not only that, but it's great to see new and old MOTUC related product in those cases and rub elbows with fans and look-e-lou's alike. So I say as long as MOTUC is still going (which fortunately at this point it is) then Mattel should keep a presence at SDCC.
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  3. #3
    Council Elder Tallstar's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Stygian360 View Post
    I wouldn't see Mattel skipping SDCC as, A) even possible, B) a good thing on any level. SDCC is a great opportunity for open publicity for ALL of Mattel's product offerings, not just MOTUC. So whether they show up to tout WWE, Mattycollector, or Monster High Dolls, Mattel is still going to be there doing their thing. Not only that, but it's great to see new and old MOTUC related product in those cases and rub elbows with fans and look-e-lou's alike. So I say as long as MOTUC is still going (which fortunately at this point it is) then Mattel should keep a presence at SDCC.
    I should probably clarify that I mean the Mattycollector branch of Mattel skipping one year. hehe (Don't they have a separate budget to do things like redressing the statue, etc.?) Maybe I'm wrong, but it seems to me that the same toy news sites would probably report on Mattel's offerings, even if the MOTUC didn't have a presence at SDCC.
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  4. #4
    Heroic Warrior Stygian360's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tallstar View Post
    I should probably clarify that I mean the Mattycollector branch of Mattel skipping one year. hehe (Don't they have a separate budget to do things like redressing the statue, etc.?) Maybe I'm wrong, but it seems to me that the same toy news sites would probably report on Mattel's offerings, even if the MOTUC didn't have a presence at SDCC.
    If this meant we'd get a few really killer new sculpt figures rather than this money simply getting sucked right back into the budget and get dispersed into other lines I'd be all for it, but based on this years SDCC exclusive I think we all know that wouldn't be the case. The money wouldn't go towards anything good- or we'd be told it would be and it never would- so why lose that little bit of marketing push at the show? Again, I don't see Mattel willing to skip an appearance on behalf of MOTUC and how healthy that would be for the line overall is completely debatable.
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  5. #5
    Heroic Warrior mjw41's Avatar
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    I love SDCC. Leave it alone. Those funds would not get redirected just like Mattel could not take the funds fromm dc and put into MOTUC's. People love SDCC it's the biggest one and love the Matty Reveals and SDCC exclusives.
    Looking forward to the entire 2014 & 2015 line

  6. #6
    Council Elder Tallstar's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mjw41 View Post
    I love SDCC. Leave it alone. Those funds would not get redirected just like Mattel could not take the funds fromm dc and put into MOTUC's. People love SDCC it's the biggest one and love the Matty Reveals and SDCC exclusives.
    It's possible I'm not remembering correctly, but at one time I thought Toyguru posed a question along the lines of: Do we do mini-comics with every figure or do we go to San Diego Comic Con? So it seems like it would be possible to use SDCC funds for other things.
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    Heroic Warrior Jeevesosiris's Avatar
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    I get what you are saying Tallstar but I think that it would take more than this to attract new fans/subscribers - so I would rather they keep to their usual plan and give us a new figure or two.

    If think it will be tough no matter what they do if they want to attract a new host of subscribers. Just thinking as I type but offering a new sub of main event, key characters, maybe just the 8back and giving them new packaging - the red bricks - that could perhaps get new collectors into the line if it was marketed right and not cost THAT much as there would be no more tooling. Again though, hat budget needs to come from somewhere and I cannot see Mattel wanting to do this anytime soon as we have heard again and again from Scott.
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  8. #8
    Heroic Warrior SpiritOfTeela's Avatar
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    SDCC is not really about the advertising to the folks who actually attend, to begin with (nor is SDCC really much more than a retail buying event these days), but that's actually beside the point.

    The real point is, promotion isn't going to help this line grow. That ship has long ago sailed. Just starting with the "you-can-only-sign-up-a-few-weeks-a-year-for-a-blind-subscription-for-$500+-worth-of-toys" subscription model, to the fact that, really, at this point we are into characters that only a small portion of people would even recognize as MOTU.

    I think it would have been entirely possible for this line to have attracted many, many more folks earlier on had it had better promotion - folks used to swear up and down that "everyone who possibly would want this line already knows about it" - even Val used to insist that, it was just this given to the community - but as we now know, that was just not the case. We saw so many new interested folks with Grayskull getting even the limited press it did - and some of them actually even started collecting (we've seen lots of posts).

    Thing is, at this point, no one just wants the future figures, and you are talking thousands and thousands of dollars and a whole lot of work to catch up on this line. And, to begin with, to most folks outside of the bubble, even those that collect toys, the blind sub model is just ridiculous and a non-starter from the outset. I'll never forget literally laughing out loud the first time I found the website, and figured it all out. I was like, "Are. You. Kidding. Me?" I found the site in Nov of 2010, which told me that I could sign up in July of 2011 to blindly sub for figures I'd start getting in 2012...I thought it was absurd. I persevered, but for every one of me, even at that point - one wonders just how many closed the website and walked away.

    I totally see the intention, but at this point - there is nothing they can really do to open up the line to more subscribers - there are just too many reasons it's closed off to most folks to even begin at this point. That ship sailed long ago.

  9. #9
    Heroic Warrior Stygian360's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tallstar View Post
    It's possible I'm not remembering correctly, but at one time I thought Toyguru posed a question along the lines of: Do we do mini-comics with every figure or do we go to San Diego Comic Con? So it seems like it would be possible to use SDCC funds for other things.
    I'd definitely take a bushel of mini-comics over an SDCC appearance, but I do love their reveals. It's such a 'party' atmosphere at SDCC when they do their panel and then put the new reveals up in the case. It really makes for a great 'feel good' for those in attendance and even for those playing at home. I personally feel the line still needs those pushes.
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  10. #10
    Heroic Warrior Uncle Jake's Avatar
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    Nope. This thing started at SDCC. It ends at SDCC.
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  11. #11
    Heroic Warrior InspectorZartan's Avatar
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    There are a few problems with skipping comic con.

    1) there is a huge demand from companies wanting floor space at comic con. My understanding from vendors I know is that floor space on the show room floor is sort of grandfathered in, so if you were there last year you automatically get an offer to return with the same foot print the following year, but if you skip a year your booth space goes to someone else and then that company is grandfathered in. That puts you at the bottom of a very long wait list of people wanting a space to be at comic con.

    2) Comic Con gets national attention. A billboard does not. Every camera and entertainment outlet gets into the comic con scene. Via the Comic Con media frenzy Mattel has in years past been able to hock their products on national networks and get featured articles in national publications. Heck my parents who live in the midwest have seen that He-Man statue show up several times in even their local evening news, and local paper. So having something visual to see at comic con actually gets more eyes on that image than being located on the side of a few freeways. On the other hand a billboard only gets the views of those local drivers (and I live in Los Angeles where outside of Times Square we probably have the most valuable billboard space in the world... And still even in L.A. you probably have more eyes seeing a comic con display being shown in the media than a typical billboard display alongside a freeway). Again comic con has global reach, and gets the attention of a wide variety of media outlets. A billboard would only get local reach, and would be a story only covered by a toy site (if that).

    So that's not to say that SDCC is hands down their best option for marketing, but it is better than something like billboards or low circulation ads.

    - - - Updated - - -

    Quote Originally Posted by SpiritOfTeela View Post
    The real point is, promotion isn't going to help this line grow. That ship has long ago sailed. Just starting with the "you-can-only-sign-up-a-few-weeks-a-year-for-a-blind-subscription-for-$500+-worth-of-toys" subscription model, to the fact that, really, at this point we are into characters that only a small portion of people would even recognize as MOTU.

    I think it would have been entirely possible for this line to have attracted many, many more folks earlier on had it had better promotion - folks used to swear up and down that "everyone who possibly would want this line already knows about it" - even Val used to insist that, it was just this given to the community - but as we now know, that was just not the case. We saw so many new interested folks with Grayskull getting even the limited press it did - and some of them actually even started collecting (we've seen lots of posts).

    Thing is, at this point, no one just wants the future figures, and you are talking thousands and thousands of dollars and a whole lot of work to catch up on this line. And, to begin with, to most folks outside of the bubble, even those that collect toys, the blind sub model is just ridiculous and a non-starter from the outset. I'll never forget literally laughing out loud the first time I found the website, and figured it all out. I was like, "Are. You. Kidding. Me?" I found the site in Nov of 2010, which told me that I could sign up in July of 2011 to blindly sub for figures I'd start getting in 2012...I thought it was absurd. I persevered, but for every one of me, even at that point - one wonders just how many closed the website and walked away.

    I totally see the intention, but at this point - there is nothing they can really do to open up the line to more subscribers - there are just too many reasons it's closed off to most folks to even begin at this point. That ship sailed long ago.
    I think you're hitting on some good points here. The truth is Mattel still gets attention opportunities at SDCC, but in order to get utilize that attention you have to bring something interesting to the table (like the Hoverboard or Castle Greyskull) or have a hot future (like MOTU when Classics started or like Monster High today). MOTUC really doesn't have a hot future, and this year there isn't anything that interesting to promote for that particular brand (it's just more figures that to a casual viewer look no different than the figures they saw the year before). That said this would be true for any marketing campaign they might try to implement at this point. So really the most interesting thing to get the attention of a non-current customer, at this time probably is that SDCC statue.

    I've said this before but I think next year it would be smart to make Dare the SDCC exclusive. Making He-Man a father is the one thing they could do (outside of new entertainment) that would get national attention.

    That's not to say they have to actually shift the focus of the brand to the SOH era. (Think of it like when Marvel was putting out Spider-Girl comics telling future stories about Peter and Mary Jane's daughter--it isn't like they abandoned Spider-Man and shifted all the story telling into the future. Introducing Dare is no different than introducing Spidergirl--it doesn't prevent you from still keeping the main focus on the current timeline and your current main character, it just means you're adding stories/figures about a potential future in which that character could have offspring that also goes on adventures).

    No paper or news outlet is going to care that Dragstor is coming, or that the Snake Men will finally be complete, but you send out a press release that announces that after 30 plus years He-Man is going to have a son and that will get you a trending write up in national papers/magazines, a feature headline on yahoo, and a short mention on CNN. It's similar to when Marvel/DC announce that after 50 years of adventures they are changing the status quo by killing Superman or Peter Parker. It isn't like Doc Ock was ever going to permanently take over, it was just something temporary that was in the short term dramatic enough to grab people's interest. So in the case of Dare you release the figure at SDCC, get the media attention, remind people that He-Man still exists and that there is product they should buy, and then once you got that attention, you go right back to releasing the same mix of figures they would have been releasing anyway.
    Last edited by InspectorZartan; May 5, 2014 at 08:46pm.
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  12. #12
    Pillar of the Community hadley's Avatar
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    I don't know, man. Do you really see new people off the proverbial street signing up to subscribe for Ninjor and Squeeeze? Not likely... I think the potential audience is retaining current subscribers and converting cherry pickers.

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    Master of Invisibility MOTU_Maniac's Avatar
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    Since I have never been to SDCC, it is easy for me not care one way or the other. I am kind of on the fence about it.

    On one hand, I would hate for them to not have a presence for people that attend SDCC with Mattycollector being the main reason they go. On the other hand, since I don't attend SDCC, I wouldn't mind those dollars going towards something that might directly impact me like more mini-comics, more accessories, etc.
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    Heroic Master of 200X MegaGearMax's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by SpiritOfTeela View Post
    SDCC is not really about the advertising to the folks who actually attend, to begin with (nor is SDCC really much more than a retail buying event these days), but that's actually beside the point.

    The real point is, promotion isn't going to help this line grow. That ship has long ago sailed. Just starting with the "you-can-only-sign-up-a-few-weeks-a-year-for-a-blind-subscription-for-$500+-worth-of-toys" subscription model, to the fact that, really, at this point we are into characters that only a small portion of people would even recognize as MOTU.

    I think it would have been entirely possible for this line to have attracted many, many more folks earlier on had it had better promotion - folks used to swear up and down that "everyone who possibly would want this line already knows about it" - even Val used to insist that, it was just this given to the community - but as we now know, that was just not the case. We saw so many new interested folks with Grayskull getting even the limited press it did - and some of them actually even started collecting (we've seen lots of posts).

    Thing is, at this point, no one just wants the future figures, and you are talking thousands and thousands of dollars and a whole lot of work to catch up on this line. And, to begin with, to most folks outside of the bubble, even those that collect toys, the blind sub model is just ridiculous and a non-starter from the outset. I'll never forget literally laughing out loud the first time I found the website, and figured it all out. I was like, "Are. You. Kidding. Me?" I found the site in Nov of 2010, which told me that I could sign up in July of 2011 to blindly sub for figures I'd start getting in 2012...I thought it was absurd. I persevered, but for every one of me, even at that point - one wonders just how many closed the website and walked away.

    I totally see the intention, but at this point - there is nothing they can really do to open up the line to more subscribers - there are just too many reasons it's closed off to most folks to even begin at this point. That ship sailed long ago.
    Depends on what is being promoted.

    Two words...Variant Sub.

    It has 2.0 characters/Filmation/MYP/Mini-comic versions of the main characters for the fans who are discovering the line late OR already present fans who want those depictions of the characters. The fans who don't want variants and only want the obscure characters don't have to buy the Variant sub, they can stick with the regular 2016 Club Eternia sub.

    Getting in Classics NOW is like jumping into a Star Wars line that features super obscure characters like the six breasted woman from Jabba's palace or the Rancor Keeper. Luke, Leia and Han are long gone.

    The line needs new blood to replace the fans who have left--for whatever reason.

    Promote THAT.

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  15. #15
    Evil Warrior Invicta's Avatar
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    People are thinking so old school, what they want is us talking about the brand...and toysites reporting new releases on their sites. That is their advertisement, can't even think what would be more efficient way.

    I do not see Classics target audience being the people who read billboards or banners..or even watch TV that much (other than recorded programs where you skip the ads), unless American demography and consumer behaviour is considerably different from European.

    Viral is the way to go for collector based products.

  16. #16
    Heroic Warrior Stygian360's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Invicta View Post
    People are thinking so old school, what they want is us talking about the brand...and toysites reporting new releases on their sites. That is their advertisement, can't even think what would be more efficient way.
    Speaking of advertising. Alas the perfect opportunity could have been Scott's recent appearance on Toy Hunter. Instead the line was never directly referred to and figures were only shown here and there, but no direct mention was made to this glorious line- as in whatsoever. Total missed opportunity, Scooter pants.
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  17. #17
    Heroic Warrior byinfernoslight's Avatar
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    SDCC is the BIG event of the year and gets international coverage via the web. I can't think of any other form of advertising that reaches such a large audience of people likely to buy the product. I'm sure a lot of collectors would assume the line was dead if MOTUC didn't have a presence at SDCC.

  18. #18
    Heroic Warrior SpiritOfTeela's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by MegaGearMax View Post
    Depends on what is being promoted.

    Two words...Variant Sub.

    It has 2.0 characters/Filmation/MYP/Mini-comic versions of the main characters for the fans who are discovering the line late OR already present fans who want those depictions of the characters. The fans who don't want variants and only want the obscure characters don't have to buy the Variant sub, they can stick with the regular 2016 Club Eternia sub.

    Getting in Classics NOW is like jumping into a Star Wars line that features super obscure characters like the six breasted woman from Jabba's palace or the Rancor Keeper. Luke, Leia and Han are long gone.

    The line needs new blood to replace the fans who have left--for whatever reason.

    Promote THAT.
    Oh, I absolutely agree - because even if those items are promised as part of the "big" sub, I think you suspect as well as I do that folks would also have to buy the Son of He-man stuff and all of Scott's newly created in an already bursting full universe new characters as well.

    So a "mini-sub" of variants - yup, I think it would make it. But if he just promises it as part of the traditional "full sub" model, I don't think it will - because folks like us won't be fooled, and will just cherry pick in between the new uninspired stuff that he seems bound and determined to a fault to shoehorn in.

  19. #19
    Heroic Warrior Stygian360's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by byinfernoslight View Post
    SDCC is the BIG event of the year and gets international coverage via the web. I can't think of any other form of advertising that reaches such a large audience of people likely to buy the product. I'm sure a lot of collectors would assume the line was dead if MOTUC didn't have a presence at SDCC.
    Chicken or egg here, mate. I'm not sure I see that SDCC really attracts that many new customers. Nor is it the information funnel for whether active fans are reminded of the lines continued existence. Most of us are fairly dialed into MOTUC via this site and the myriad toy news outlets. So just like how Hasbro bowing out of appearing at Joe Con this year doesn't mean they've killed all future GI Joe product, I wouldn't see Mattel bowing out of having MOTUC at SDCC as anything that would by consequence 'kill teh lien' because fans assumed it was already dead.
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  20. #20
    In disguise! Barbecue17's Avatar
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    While SDCC is definitely a big deal, I do wonder how much it really benefits Mattel at this point. At the point where we are in this line do we really believe that collectors who have not been engaged with this line for almost 6 years are going to suddenly commit to a year's worth of product because of what we'll see from next year's line up? I think many have definitely expressed how confusing it is to explain this line to someone. Yearly subscriptions? Early access? This is a pretty niche line at this point that really has its own culture.

    Unless Mattel was launching a new subset or spinoff such as Son of He-Man, Filmation Classics, New 52 MOTU, or something similar, I'm not sure how beneficial an SDCC presence. It seems to me that targeting collectors, past subscribers, and fan sites more directly may prove equally, if not more effective. At this point, unless Mattel does something crazy, I think the name of the game is to retain current subscribers and try to win back lapsed ones. Scott could even do a short presentation or webinar from Mattel headquarters or something (seriously, our local community college can do those) to still hit the reveals.

    Of course, Mattel probably has a designated marketing budget for this event and if they're not willing to rework the budget or make changes, SDCC it is.
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  21. #21
    grumpy old dragon scott metzger's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by MegaGearMax View Post
    Depends on what is being promoted.

    Two words...Variant Sub.

    It has 2.0 characters/Filmation/MYP/Mini-comic versions of the main characters for the fans who are discovering the line late OR already present fans who want those depictions of the characters. The fans who don't want variants and only want the obscure characters don't have to buy the Variant sub, they can stick with the regular 2016 Club Eternia sub.

    Getting in Classics NOW is like jumping into a Star Wars line that features super obscure characters like the six breasted woman from Jabba's palace or the Rancor Keeper. Luke, Leia and Han are long gone.

    The line needs new blood to replace the fans who have left--for whatever reason.

    Promote THAT.
    The point is well taken, but there's a problem we might run into. One of the only figures that didn't sell out was Hurricane Hordikins; he's a top tier character, on par with Skeletor by many measures, and his first variant did not sell out inside of two weeks. Add in that the re-releases did not perform well outside of He-Man and Skeletor, and I think you'll have a hard time convincing the big wigs to go for a whole sub of re-dos. Now one can argue a Teela 2.0 is different than just a re-release, but we still run into the ill winds of Huricane Hordak, the variant that didn't move well. And unless the whole line-up is released up front, there's going to be fear among fans of another Snake Man-at-Arms or BG Evil Lynn popping up once your committed...
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  22. #22
    Historian of Eternia LORD FALLEN ELDOR's Avatar
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    I get what you are saying Tallstar

    I get what your saying, they do seam to spend a lot of money on SDCC displays. SDCC booths felt like an arms race five years ago, I can't imagine how bad it has gotten...Is that amount of money really that well placed? It's a good question. How much of that is corporate ego and how much is good business sense? IDK. Didn't "who can have the biggest free swag bag" end when WB said "we can!"? I remember seeing a girl make a dress out of The Wonder Woman animated movie bag one year to prove how stupid the "bigger bag" race had become. Apply that to the size of your booth and that is what I think Talstar is saying guys. Its stupid and crazy and serves no "real" purpose when EVERYBODY is gonna upload pictures of everything to the internet anyways. It isn't like you can have a bigger booth then WB and Disney so why try?

    I think a simple ad like they use to in Toyfare magazine in the current MOTU DC comic series would be wise, but Mattel always cries poor stories yet spends an exorbitant amount of money and resources in to redressing a he-man statue, that IIRC has never once just been He-Man has it? That is the bizzro logic that I fail to understand.

    One thin I would LOVE to see done is a good ol' fashion "half hour commercial" like the DC comics/Star Wars Robot Chicken Specials (their MOTU ones are almost always entertaining) or that recent G.I Joe episode of Community that EVERYBODY loved. The Family Guys guys obviously have some LOVE for He-Man, in Hollywood everybody knows everybody so...I dunno I just can't imagine WHY something like this CAN"T have already happened already. I'm sure the subject has had to come up from time to time right?

    BUDGET. A lot of that is about budgets. I know, but it has equal as much to do with priorities as well.

    At any rate we have He-Man toys, and now He-Man comics FOR YEARS now, just like we did back in 1982 :-D We all know what has to come next.
    http://kotaku.com/why-fanboys-act-like-jerks-1563379006

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  23. #23
    Heroic Warrior
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    YES!!!! of course

  24. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by MOTU_Maniac View Post
    Since I have never been to SDCC, it is easy for me not care one way or the other. I am kind of on the fence about it.

    On one hand, I would hate for them to not have a presence for people that attend SDCC with Mattycollector being the main reason they go. On the other hand, since I don't attend SDCC, I wouldn't mind those dollars going towards something that might directly impact me like more mini-comics, more accessories, etc.
    This is pretty much my take on it as well, as I've never attended, and never wanted to- but often thrill to some of the reveals!
    AUDACIEUX ET TENACE

  25. #25
    We can choose these? Matthew K's Avatar
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    Jun 2007
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    I think it would be extremely foolish to forgo the tons of new media coverage at SDCC for some dead and dying old media advertising.

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