What's the deal with
those Columbia House 12-for-1, 8-for-1, and FREE
CD mail-order CD club offers?
You've seen the numerous
ads touting "X CDs for the price of 1!" or "X DVDs FREE" or "Buy 1,
get X FREE!" all over the place. Are they really too good to be
true? Actually, no... these are often great ways to get CDs,
VHS, or DVD Cheap You can get CDs for $5-8, DVDs for $9-12, and
VHS for $6-9, versus the TWICE THAT you'd often pay in stores.
If you were wondering how
they do this, its pretty simple - they don't pay artists as much (or
at all) as with a regular CD. Notice how many of the CDs you
receive are "FREE" or "Bonus". Well, as luck would have it, most
artists have in their contracts that they don't get paid for "FREE" or
"Bonus" CDs. They signed those contract thinking those were
promotion giveaways or something like that. Well, guess again.
The money you save (which can be a lot) comes mostly out of artists
pockets, as well as from the stores who are cut out by you buying
"direct". The same goes for movie titles, although its the
studio that gets cut out a bit from the equation.
Q: Why don't you offer
all of the popular selections and artists?
A: Not all the clubs offer all titles by popular artists.
First off, they concentrate on teh more popular titles, so they can
stock less. Second, corporate ownership of these clubs can
restrict who they can carry. Columbia House, for instance,
is owned by Sony... so CH can't offer their Sony CDs. CH owns
RCA, so you'll only find they CDs at RCA. If neither club has
the CD you're after, you can almost certainly buy it at
Barnes and Noble or
Amazon.com using the discounts at
Q: Why don't they have
the latest releases?
A: This is controlled by our contracts with individual labels and
artists. We aim to offer new titles as soon as possible, but often
they are available in retail stores first. We know it's hard to wait
for the latest release from your favorite bands, but you'll be
rewarded with lower prices!
Q: How do I contact
A: To reach Columbia House customer service, call 812-242-7000 or
send email to