Page 5: The market
The market for pre-recorded music is becoming increasingly polarised. At one end are 'discount' retailers who may use products as loss leaders to gain share from each other. At the other end are specialist stores like HMV, which focus on providing a quality service based on added-value, product knowledge and range.
HMV believes in providing music, DVD's and games for people in whatever format they require. HMV? customers are broadly based and have a wide range of 'eclectic' tastes rather than being confined to a particular niche market - many modern consumers want to dip into several different types of music. While HMV has to meet the requirements of a broad market place, it also has to keep the dedicated enthusiast, who may have specific interests, happy. HMV communicates with its target audience through advertising in appropriate specialist media, and supports this in-store with effective merchandising and expert staff.
Not all cities can support stores of similar size. Electronic stock control and ordering systems help overcome this problem. If the local smaller-town HMV does not have what you want in stock, it can rapidly find an HMV store that has the item and will arrange for you to receive it as soon as possible. The brand image is thereby sustained.