Hollywood Video - Development Strategy
Hollywood video has successfully become one of the nations largest in-store video rental companies. With the advent of online rental companies such as Netflix and other traditional competitors also moving into the online movie rental space. Hollywood Video was looking for recommendations and direction on how to combat or surpass the already present threat of online competitors. Our team was challenged with researching the industry of online video rental to determine a strategy for Hollywood Video to compete in the online rental movie market.
We determined that before providing a strategy and business plan to enact an online offering it was prudent to research both Hollywood's customer base and conduct a service and business strategy competitive analysis to determine a baseline strategic, technical, and financial understanding of the undertaking. Based on the analysis we could provide recommendations on development strategies for the organization that also contained a strong and accurate feasibility study of end user acceptance of the system and possible usage growth projections. This was accomplished by conducting a series of end user segment interviews and usability studies to model the economic, social, and psycho-graphical makeup of potential customers.
Furthermore, we conducted service features and business model analysis of identified competitors to determine the base services required for a new system to at least be competitive with the current industry standards. The research was further expanded to forecast features and services that could provide a competitive edge if initiated. And finally, an logistical and cost analysis was conducted to determine the scope, timetable, and cost for the first two years of development, management, and operations of the new service.
The division heads and board of directors were very impressed with the thoroughness of the proposal, research, and detailed user modeling. At the time the analysis and recommendation was concluded the company was in the process of merging with Movie Gallery (a east coast movie chain). Because of the changes in political and management structure the board felt it prudent to hold off such a financial decision until after the merger.
I really enjoyed this project! The competitive and psycho-graphical analysis was very challenging and enlightening about the home video industry and the online movie rental industry. The most challenging aspect of the project was the service and feature competitive analysis. For the most part, I never got direct access to competitor's systems and instead had to infer the system architecture and business rules from the perspective of a end-user. Furthermore, during the analysis and design phase we were tasked to model systems based on existing services of several vendor products. Most of the products were very basic and or highly convoluted in design. Because of this I spent many hours reviewing services and features and in some cases reviewing source code to determine the scope of the vendor's products. Still, the experience was very gratifying once we finished the analysis and provided a recommendation strategy and prototypes of what the final system could be.