Family Video offers free movies to celebrate 30 years in businessWritten by Duane Ramsey | | firstname.lastname@example.org
Family Video stores are offering free video rentals of select movie titles through Nov. 17.
The family-owned company is using the promotion to celebrate 30 years in business at 570 stores in 18 states. Family Video operates 13 stores in the greater Toledo area, including locations in Oregon, Maumee, Sylvania, Toledo and Temperance, Mich.
“It came at a good time for us to give back to the community in this economy,” said Kevin Pasch, district manager for the Toledo-area stores.
People can open an account for free with a valid ID at any Family Video store and rent two movies for free per visit with no other purchase required. The free rentals include about 4,000 general titles that usually rent for $1 to $2.
“The economy doesn’t affect us much. With our low-cost video rentals, we do very well in the tough economy,” Pasch said.
Family Video stores carry 12,000 to 18,000 movies and games for rent at the 13 stores in the Toledo market. In addition to the general titles, many other movies rent for $1 each for five days, and new releases rent for $2.79 each. About 500 to 600 movies for children, educational, fitness and sports videos are available for free at all times.
“Price is important to our customers,” said CEO and founder Charlie Hoogland. “In these tough economic times, families have to make difficult decisions every day. Rental is the greatest value, spending the night together as a family for $3.50 or less.”
Hoogland’s family was in the retail appliance business, and he got “stuck” with a large quantity of videos. His team got the idea to rent the videos, and he started the chain in 1978 with one store in Springfield, Ill.
“It was one of the first video rental stores in the country,” Hoogland said. “We continue to open another store each week and now employ almost 6,000 people.”
Family Video opened its first store in Toledo in 1996 and has continued to expand in this market during the past 12 years.
The firm employs about 120 people for management, full- and part-time positions at 13 locations in this market.
“Our formula for success is having the right people because customer service is our top priority,” said Jason Yuhasz, regional manager for Northwest Ohio and Southeast Michigan.
“Finding and attracting the right people is the biggest part of my job,” Pasch said. “We often find them working other service jobs, and our customers often become our best employees. Our people are good recruiters because they know their regular customers so well.”
Family Video hires a lot of college students to work in the stores. The busiest times for rentals are in the evenings and on weekends because that fits their school schedule.
Both Pasch and Yuhasz began working for Family Video while attending college. Both also left the company seeking other careers, but said they came back when they realized the video rental business was right for them.
Yuhasz is responsible for 29 stores in Northwest Ohio as far south as Lima and the two stores in Adrian and Temperance. All Family Video stores are open 365 days a year, most from 10 a.m. to midnight.
Every Tuesday, anywhere from eight to 12 new movie releases become available.
Family Video is the third largest movie and game rental chain in the country and the largest family-owned, according to the company.
Hoogland said it operates differently than its competitors. He believes in investing in each location by purchasing real estate and building stores rather than leasing because it gives the company strong roots in each community.