When I worked at EB (way back when), I remember having to answer the phone as follows-
"Thank you for calling Electronics Boutique where you can now pre-order 'insert hot game name here,' this is Ben, how can I help you today?"
I hated saying it over and over because half the time, the caller would be annoyed and cut me off before I finished the spiel. It got worse when the answering pitch – which is really what it was – got even longer.
And that was back in 1998, so things haven't really changed. The big difference now is that before, pre-order incentives were kinda rare; all you got for your $10 deposit was the assurance that your game would be there on launch day. But now, it seems like almost every title has a pre-order bonus of some kind, and it usually involves some sort of "exclusive" content that typically becomes available to everyone via download at a later date.
However, for the hardcore fans of a particular franchise or a hotly anticipated game, those incentives might be really attractive. I'm just wondering if avid gamers are often swayed by such bonuses, or if the marketing ploys fall on deaf ears. I remember pre-orders were a big deal; the more you got, the more likely you were to get a bonus, and the better off your store would be. They're almost guaranteed sales, after all. The only thing more important to me were those hardware warranties (we got percentages of those, by the way).
Anyway, it's just a question. You can't walk into a GameStop these days without being asked if you want to pre-order something, which prompted this question.