Tom Spurgeon's Web site of comics news, reviews, interviews and commentary

November 7, 2011

Company Not Concerned About Market Share Stones Closest Competitor In Terms Of Monthly Market Share

imageThe hobby business news and analysis site has the most succinct story from news released late last week that in terms of monthly market share DC Comics in October enjoyed a victory over close competitor Marvel reminiscent of one of those lopsided boxing matches where you sheepishly change the channel for the last few moments despite having paid $59.95 for the experience. DC took both unit shares and dollar shares by a significant margin, took seven of the top ten slots, and 17 of the top 20. The October win follows a much more narrow market share win by DC in September, a close tussle for which the comics company prepared us this summer by dismissing the idea of winning market share as an important thing. I hold that these kinds of victories are extremely important for publishers, particularly ones like DC that haven't performed this strongly vis-a-vis Marvel since a) the depths of Marvel's post-bankruptcy malaise or b) really ever in the modern comics industry sense.

The solid October win did put on display certain structural factors about the direct market, such as the way that a decisive shift in the way a market initiative is perceived can dig itself in in the short term (and thus becomes more difficult to bleed away in the long term). The linked-to article also makes the important point that the recent DC-led surge in DM sales has chipped away at some alarming decline trends. This might be enough to pull 2011 even with or even ahead of 2010 by the end of December, with a potential for future growth and market stabilization possible in the months following.

My personal favorite numbers guy John Jackson Miller has a piece up here discussing the role of re-orders and approximating just how many more comics were sold this October as opposed to the same month in 2010.
posted 5:00 am PST | Permalink

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