Posted by: lcowie | April 1, 2009

Family Video

Video rental business serves its “Family” with cheap prices and excellent customer service

by Lesley Cowie

BURLINGTON, N.C. – When it rains, it pours…at least that is how the employees of Family Video feel when the weather is damp. It is on these days that local residents flock to the video rental store in Burlington to find their top choices for entertainment. Even when the weather is hot and sunny, Family Video sees between 1500 and 2000 customers walk through the door each week.

The privately-owned business, located at 1135 N. Main St., houses approximately 12,500 movies and 1,300 video games and consoles available for rent. Most customers leave the store with an average of three videos per visit.

Store manager Kristina McLaughlin said the Burlington store, which has been located in Burlington for five years, is the second oldest Family Video store in North Carolina. It is one of 600 Family Video stores nationwide. The chain is owned by the Hoogland family of Springfield, Ill., and thusly named “Family” Video.

“We are one of the largest Family Video stores in North Carolina,” McLaughlin said. “In addition, we have the largest New Release wall in North Carolina.”

According to McLaughlin, the Family Video of Burlington was ranked #1 in sales within the company in March and April 2008. For the last two years, she said, we have been in the top five for sales. Right now, this particular store is in the top 20.

“Because sales encompass bundle packs and extras, the number one ranking reflects the quality of customer service at this store,” McLaughlin said. “It means we go above and beyond.”

Treating customers as people and not as numbers

According to McLaughlin, customer service is a top priority at Family Video.

“It is included in our mission statement,” McLaughlin said. “Our mission is to be our customer’s first entertainment choice. We do this by providing a unique mix of great customer service and low prices. Customer service is our top priority! We treat our customers as people, not just as a number.”

The employees of Family Video demonstrate their customer service skills via verbal communication and physical representation. Aside from greeting each customer as he or she walks through the door, employees always dress professionally.

During the week, McLaughlin said, employees may wear business casual attire. On the weekends, employees should wear business professional attire.

“This differentiates us and allows us to become easily recognizable in the store,” McLaughlin said. “We project a professional image.”

Bringing down the prices

Family Video’s excellent customer service extends to great deals for the customers. According to McLaughlin, Family Video has the lowest prices for video rentals in town.

“New release movies are generally $2.09 for one night and $2.59 for five nights,” McLaughlin said. “If a customer gets three five-night new release movies, then he or she is entitled to a forth 5-night release for free.”

“Customers may also purchase a bundle pack, which is two five-night movie releases with popcorn and a box of candy or soda or ice cream, all for $7.95,” McLaughlin said.

The Mid-Week Special allows customers to rent a new release movie and get a $1 movie rental for free. According to McLaughlin, this special runs from Tuesday to Thursday.

The Discount Movie Rental Card costs $9.95 and gives customers a half-price rate for movies and video games for 30 days.

Customers may also get a deal for referring friends. McLaughlin said a customer can receive a free rental for referring a friend to the store.

Playing with prices

Family Video also offers video games and consoles. The store carries games compatible with Xbox 360, Xbox, Wii, PS2, PS3, Game Cube and Nintendo DS. Consoles are available for Xbox 360, Wii, PS2 and Game Cube.

For the PS2, Xbox, Game Cube and Nintendo DS games, customers have the option of keeping the game for one night, two nights or five nights. The prices for each option are as follows: $2.59 for one night, $3.59 for two nights and $5.99 for five nights.

The MVG games, or most valuable games, are worth only .99 cents for five nights. McLaughlin said these are the lowest game rentals in town.

Some of the higher priced games belong to PS3, Xbox 360, and Wii. Customers have the option to keep these games for one night, two nights or five nights. The prices for these games are as follows: $2.99 for one night, $3.99 for two nights and $6.99 for five nights.

Phasing out the VHS tapes

Family Video rents out thousands of DVD movies, but they also have some VHS tapes still available.

“The only VHS tapes that we have available for rent are the kids movies because there’s a good chance that they still have VCRs,” McLaughlin said. “Very few people request VHS tapes these days.”

If someone does want a VHS tape, McLaughlin said, there is a bin full of videos for sale. One video cost $1.99, 5 videos cost $5 and 13 videos cost $10.

Fast, free and easy membership

In order to take advantage of these promotions, residents must sign up for a membership with Family Video. McLaughlin described the process as “fast, free and easy.”

All it takes to become a Family Video member is a valid ID and a valid phone number. Not only is the membership free, but all new members get half-off on their rentals for the first 30 days.

Chris Tracy, a local district manager for Family Video, recognizes the importance of these deals. Customers like to get free items, he said.

After signing up for a membership, Tracy likes to take new members on a quick tour of the store to show them everything that is available to them. The tour starts with the free items and ends with a free coupon.

“Kids’ videos, educational videos, and sports and fitness videos are always free,” Tracy said. “Educational videos are like how-to videos, like how to play guitar. Sports videos are like super bowl games, like when the Steelers won the super bowl. Fitness videos are like yoga videos.”

When it comes to the lowest prices for DVD and game rentals, Family Video is the place to be. Sign up for a free membership, take advantage of the promotions and refer a friend.

Family Video is open from 10 am-midnight every day of the year.

Family Video Tour

Family Video Deals



  1. This blog’s great!! Thanks :).

  2. Oh, the Price is so cheap and if the customer service is good, I would want to join.

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