Jordan Crook reports that Sony COO Phil Molyneux unveiled Sony’s new retail strategy at a press conference this morning. Wait for it… Sony Stores! As Crook notes, the strategy is basically “follow Apple’s lead”.
But I’m confused, wasn’t this also their old retail strategy? It sure sounds like they’re basically doing the same things they were doing with the Sony Style stores but holding a press conference to say the strategy is new because it didn’t work the first time around.
The real problem — which I’m not sure either Sony or Microsoft really understand — is that simply building stores which look like Apple Stores isn’t enough. It’s the Apple products in them that make them successful.
Apple’s strategy with the stores worked because they knew they had the best products, they just had a hard time conveying that with the existing retail channels. The products quite literally sell themselves, they just needed the most efficient and effective way to get them in peoples’ hands.
At the same time, they realized there was a huge opportunity for competent human beings (who don’t work on commission) to usher users into this brave new world of computing everywhere.
It was the perfect one-two punch. That’s the Apple Store.
But if you open a Apple-like store and your products just aren’t very good, guess what happens? The opposite of success.
Think of it this way: if you opened the nicest looking store in the world that sold bags of shit, would it be successful?
Focus on the products first, not the stores.