Britney Spears

In modern-day retailing, it's just not enough to run a circular in the local newspaper. Today's retailers need to invent compelling and interesting promotions to help differentiate themselves from the competition. And while coming up with an effective promotion is challenging, it can be an opportunity to release the creative side and to experiment with new strategies. Dealerscope looked at many of the great promotions run this year by businesses large and small and picked some of the best to serve as examples of what can be done to make a business stand out. From the expensive to the economical, the national to the

The secret behind Sounds Like Music's hybrid business model—a store for the 21st century By Natalie Hope McDonald Dave Wiggs knows there's a friendly war brewing between home theater installers and major out-of-the-box retailers. But you wouldn't know it to judge this president's newest store. Sounds Like Music, the Phoenix, Arizona-based home theater, telecommunications, lighting and security provider, operates on the schizophrenic notion that both camps can, in fact, get along. Wiggs is both retailer and custom installer. Now on his third branch in the chain, the company's corporate infrastructure banks on two specific high-end markets: showroom buying and custom home installing.

CEO and President Kenneth R. Weller of Good Guys stepped in as chairman of the company's board of directors when Ronald A. Unkefer retired as chairman and as a board member. Unkefer remains the company's largest individual shareholder. Unkefer returned to Good Guys in 1999 to lead the retailer's turn around and brought 11-year Good Guys veteran Weller back into the fold after a seven year stint at Best Buy. Former Senior Vice President of Services for Best Buy Lowell Peters is now chairman of Partsearch's Advisory Board. Peters has been a services industry professional for more than 34 years, including 20 years

Retailers include downloadable music in their online mix. By Collin Keefe Between the time the federal government ordered Napster to pull the plug this past July and now, dozens of similar services have emerged on the Web and the number of users has grown exponentially. While major record labels scramble to muster the Justice Department's action to shut these services down, everyone from Microsoft and Yahoo! to AOL-Time Warner and BMG are vying for a piece of this gargantuan market. Meanwhile, retailers are inching into this nebulous market. In its prime, Napster had roughly 1.57 million users. Since its shutdown, peer-to-peer channels like

Profit vs. Fair UseBy David DritsasWASHINGTON, D.C.—"I've never seen so much seriousness over bullshit." Those were the words of Chuck D, rap artist and founder of, summing up the events that have surrounded the Napster controversy. He had just come in from a Recording Industry Association of America press conference, which occurred right next door to The Digital Download: Public Access to Content in a Digital World conference held by the Consumer Electronics Association early last month. But if the conference showed anything, it was that many in the industry, as well as government officials, are approaching the topic with great concern. The

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