With POWER COMPANY #8, the kickoff to the series' new direction and the
focus of the "PowerBoost" promo campaign, coming out Wednesday of this
week, Kurt Busiek and Tom Grummett announced the winners of the retailer giveaway contest begun two months ago.
Retailers were asked to spread the word about POWER COMPANY, and were
offered a chance at promotional prizes, including signed books, "virtual store appearances" and even original cover at from the series, by artist Tom Grummett.
"We had a hefty turnout among retailers," said Busiek, "and even as late as the day before we picked the winner, we still had people signing up.
"I don't know that we're exactly Price-Waterhouse," he added, "but we did our best to make sure the results were as random as we could make them. I randomized the list of entrants, sorting them by the last four digits of their telephone number, reversed, to make sure store name or geography didn't play any part. Tom Grummett picked numbers for the winners without seeing the list, and faxed 'em to me. And, well, that's about as complicated as it got - but you gotta admit, that reverse-telephone-number thing is pretty obsessive."
"We've called most of the winning retailers already," said Busiek, "barring a few we haven't been able to reach by phone yet. We'd notify everyone by e-mail, but, well, sap that I am, I carefully saved all the stores' addresses and phone numbers and contact names, but was too dumb to save the e-mail addresses themselves. So my computer erased them, and I don't have 'em any more."
Twenty retailers won sets of signed books - 10 copies each of POWER
COMPANY #8, signed by Busiek and Grummett. Ten retailers won "virtual
store appearances" -- phone calls to the store by either Busiek or
Grummett, to talk to fans and answer questions. And two retailers won the grand prizes - each one will get the original art to a POWER COMPANY cover drawn by Grummett.
"We're hoping that the winning retailers will use the prizes as promotional items," said Busiek. "They can give away the signed books, or make them raffle prizes, or something like that. One retailer I talked to today is going to supply his regular POWER COMPANY customers with the signed books, as a thank-you for supporting the series - and then turn around and give the unsigned books those fans would have ordinarily bought to customers who haven't tried the book. One of the grand prize winners suggested auctioning or raffling off the cover art to his customers, with the money it generated going to the CBLDF. I hope we'll see a lot of that kind of thing."
And even the retailers who didn't win anything won't go away empty-handed. "I'm glad they wee up for supporting the series," Busiek said, "so I wouldn't want to just say, 'Gee, sorry, pal, you lost.' Even though I lost most of the e-mail addresses, we have their store addresses, and we'll be sending something to everyone who entered - a signed copy of one of the early issues, if we have enough. Or whatever else looks good."
So, was the promotion successful? "All day, retailers have been telling me that interest in POWER COMPANY is going up in their stores," said Busiek. "Some are reporting slow but steady upward growth, some are saying that sales jumped sharply upward with #6, or that pull-list sign-ups have gone up fast, starting with #8. Overall sales are up at least a little, and we're encouraged.
"We won't be sitting on our laurels," he added. "Following this, we've got the new member joining in #11, a major blowout battle for the fate of the world that couldn't come at a worse time for the Company as a business in #13-14, a clash between Batman and Manhunter in #15, the Haunted Tank appearance online voters won in the DCComics.com online poll, major revelations about team members, a possible new boss, and lots more. With any luck, we'll see new readers keep discovering the book, because we're just getting started..."
The winners of the individual prizes are:
WINNERS OF 10 SIGNED COPIES OF POWER COMPANY #8
Big Planet Comics
Comic Carnival North
The Comic Game Hobby Place
Comic Town (III)
Comickaze & AFC Studio
San Diego CA
Cedar Falls, IA
Mocton, New Brunswick
Mountain Empire Comics
The Nostalgia Newsstand
Queen City Comics
Shelby County Collectables
THE "VIRTUAL STORE APPEARANCE" WINNERS
Classic Movie and Comic Center
Collector's Edge Comics South
Comic Relief: The Comic Bookstore
The Laughing Ogre
Colonial Heights, VA
Strange Adventures Comic Bookshops
Halifax, Nova Scotia
AND THE GRAND PRIZE COVER WINNERS (DRUMROLL, PLEASE...)
San Francisco CA