Best Buy is counting on customers to refrain from rioting as they go after Black Friday deals. NBC News reports the Richfield retailer wants shoppers to share their footage of the holiday madness, asking them to post seven-second Vine videos on Twitter with the hashtag #VineInLine. Best Buy plans to retweet the most clever or interesting Vines.
The AllThingsD website called the Vine idea "...dicey—a high-risk, low-reward campaign," that could capture and spread video of a scuffle or worse. A Best Buy spokeswoman expressed confidence that the process was in place for a "smooth and safe" shopping experience.
Best Buy is starting its Black Friday sales a day early, which could relieve some of the crowds charging in on Friday morning. Some of the deals will be available starting at 6 p.m. on Thanksgiving Day, with most Best Buy locations staying open until 10 p.m. the next night.
USA Today had the story of people already lined up outside several Best Buy stores, willing to sleep in a tent and miss Thanksgiving dinner for a shot at doorbuster-cheap electronics.
Many Best Buy locations also performed Black Friday dress rehearsals to prepare for the crush of customers. The Denver Post had a feature on the dry run at a store there, with clerks getting hit with questions. Why don’t I see the Galaxy S4? Will you match this price on the iPad 2? Where’s the bathroom?
The shoppers actually were store employees, doing their best to rattle their blue shirted colleagues. The effort is part of Best Buy's strategy to make the mega-shopping day as seamless as possible for customers and workers.
“Black Friday, in my opinion, is the funnest day at Best Buy,” said store manager Doug Ryan. “The energy of the customers coming into the store, the fact they are choosing us — it’s a special atmosphere.”
The Huffington Post reports that a poll by the University of Connecticut shows that although more stores than ever are opening to shoppers on Thanksgiving Day this year, nine of every 10 respondents said they don’t plan to spend the holiday shopping for bargains.
Just 7 percent of adults said they plan to visit stores on Thanksgiving Day. Forty-nine percent said they disapprove of the retail movement to open stores on Thursday.