I don't know what the percentage of sales of these collectable figs go to AFOLs/TFOLs, but we certainly are smart enough to be able to feel for what we want, so in my opinion, they're actually hurting sales by the fact that there never are enough of the figs we want available. To a toy department manager, why would he order/put out more boxes of minifigs when there are 3 almost full cases of them out already. He doesn't necessarily know that all of the good figs have been picked out already.
If TLG made them more readily available, either by putting more of the army-builders in a box, or by letting us order specific figs online, I think they could really boost sales. Think about it, how many times have you been 'hunting' for a fig, only to come across 3 dozen statue of liberties (or dance instructors, etc).
I think the marketing/availability problem has been discussed at length before elsewhere though, so I digress
I'll also be picking up some viking women, both to add another female to the fold, and for some of those swords and shields!