Featured: Does RIM Know Who Their Customers Are?

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Some guys on the Internet decided to poke a little fun at Blackberry's new marketing strategy of using superheroes to promote their phones. The new RIM CEO thinks that all that their products need is better marketing, as if the products  themselves being uncompetitive with what's out there in the market, has nothing to do with it.

This has been RIM's thinking for the past few years, ever since some of us realized RIM is in big danger because of Android and the iPhone, but at the time RIM was still making big bucks thanks to market inertia and brand recognition in emerging markets. Now that market inertia is starting to disappear, and RIM is slowing down – fast.

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So their brightest idea to stop this was not really to do something about the products, but to improve marketing – first. Their new superhero campaign is also pretty odd, because even though RIM's market is still largely the enterprise, they are trying to run away from that, and appeal to young people. This what this satirical graphic is trying to make fun of. Because RIM's phones aren't really seen as phones for young people, but phones for old people.

While RIM's marketing campaign is cute, I doubt it will do much to turn things around for them. What they really need to do is to focus on product first, and the marketing will come by itself. A lot of customers and bloggers will give them free publicity if the product is that great. They won't need to spend tens of millions on great marketing trying to sell bad products. The sooner RIM realizes this, the better. But somehow I doubt that will happen with the new CEO, which seems to follow the exact "vision" from before, but with less experience than the old CEO's.

 

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