Don't be a dumb marketer, do not ruin experiences and relationships!

11th Jul 2013

Sony has done it again!

I am not writing this as a customer experience expert or CRM consultant, just as a long-suffering customer. And they try their best to kill my delight in their products and send me in the (wide open) arms of their competitors. I am talking about the worst and weakest part of their business: their marketing.

'Done it again' because in recent months they irritated me with increasing success with their dumb direct campaigns. I received an email promotion (which I would call spam but probably my fault is not opting out form some small print) - in German, a language I do not freely use. And on no occasion have I ever given them a reason to think that German is in my top 10 preferred languages. How they came to that conclusion is beyond me.

Despite a direct email notification I wrote about the (possibly system) error, they did it again a few weeks later. And despite my noisy rant in social media about it, they did it a couple more times...

This time it's not German - in reasonably decent English they are offering me a free Xperia phone if I buy a Bravia TV. Sounds like a good offer - except, I already have a Bravia TV and more than one Xperia phone. And they know this! All my Sony products are always registered and my details are in their databases. Not using their rich own data is beyond dumb. Sending the same spam to the entire world is beyond annoying, especially from an e-mail address that contains the 'CRM' letters in it! In 1983 this could be forgiven, but this is the 2nd decade of the 21st cetury, and everyone is into advanced targeting. Is this the best Sony can do in precision targeted marketing? In customer insight and personalisation?..

If the engineers who design and make the Sony products were as incompetent (and unaccountable) as their marketers, the brand wouldn't be around by now. I am seeing increasing evidence that the Marketing function of Sony is working for the competition, towards destroying brand equity and shareholder value.

Rant over. Any opinions?


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