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08-19-2007, 08:48 PM   #31
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Pentax have just launched a teaser page for their upcoming (scheduled on September 6, 2007) website pentaxians.com. Today most of the Pentax SLR photographers (those who were registered at Pentax Photo Gallery) have received a letter from Pentax Marketing Team. They were informed about creation of Pentaxian website and were asked to tell something about themselves and what makes them Pentaxians.

That is all this is about.

Donít be stupid pride in name brand is not a bad thing for consumers.
Like Apple or NASCAR, the products you use say something about you if you believe it or not. Even you sell out to any Johnny come lately.

08-20-2007, 02:51 AM   #32
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QuoteOriginally posted by pentaxographer Quote
Donít be stupid pride in name brand is not a bad thing for consumers.
That's quite a statement! Are those who do not have pride in a name brand stupid? Do you want to offer any reasons why this would be a good thing for consumers or will this remain just an unqualified marketing yell? Is Joe Consumer getting anything out of this loyalty-trip or is the manufacturer (any one of them) capitalizing on herd behaviour? In the supermarket around the corner I get reduction stamps, Dixons offers airmiles, Shell and BP have points for towels and toys. I know I am actually paying for those "presents" myself but that is beside the point. What does Canon/Nikon/Pentax brand loyalty get me? A free sunshade, access to specially made products, anything?

QuoteQuote:
Like Apple or NASCAR, the products you use say something about you if you believe it or not. Even you sell out to any Johnny come lately.
Oh, you are probably right with that, but that is not the problem. I KNOW a marketeer can read me by looking at my consumption footprint. Instead of that same marketeer capitalizing on a perceived and inflated brand loyalty, I would like him to use his insight to get his company to produce stuff that I actually want - not make me want stuff that his company actually produces. There IS a difference there, believe it or not.

Mike
08-20-2007, 04:40 AM   #33
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QuoteOriginally posted by carpents Quote
IMO it is more "patriotism" than "nationalism", and there is a key difference between the two. Patriotism is warranted, and like many here I admire the products that Pentax has created. But also like many, if Pentax stops meeting my needs, or another brand starts meeting them more - my reasons for the patriotic attachment wane and I'll bid Pentax goodbye.
I can see that your understanding of "patriotism" is completely wrong
08-20-2007, 04:42 AM   #34
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YES!!

Very well said, Mike.

08-20-2007, 05:55 AM   #35
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The most obvious difference between Pentaxians and majority is that almost none of us bought camera for bragging rights but based on his own findings and needs. We are not afraid to stay out of the biggest herds and there are no "I want to push the button on pro camera and make pro pictures" users among us. But if Pentax becomes major we'll get those users here as well.
The whole Pentaxian thing might seem like nationalism to some but I don't think it has gone nearly as far because we know better than to judge photographer by his gear. I don't blame Pentax for using Pentaxian thing. At least not yet.
08-20-2007, 06:02 AM   #36
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And this is the point of this debate. We’re already here as owners of Pentax gear. We understand the brand and in many ways have become ‘shareholders’. Many of us and countless others not on this forum have helped this brand stay afloat since the marketing department has done such a poor job over the years of presenting the excellent reasons to consider Pentax as a viable option. My feelings over this Pentaxian/nationalism/patriotism thing is that it’s not a campaign that will attract any new potential owners to consider Pentax. What does promoting “Pentaxian” tell a consumer about the brand? Does it explain the long history of Pentax and it’s contribution to camera or SLR development? I think not. Does it discuss the great SR, SMC coatings, DA* lens quality, Weather sealed body, unique Hyper program modes, Legacy lens options, etc, etc, etc?

If I was a new consumer that had only ever used a P&S and was looking to get into the DSLR market I’d see these very good TV and print ads Nikon runs and any special event that Canon seems to predominate. The vast majority of new owners will start out just shooting family album stuff and going on vacation with their cameras. They don’t aspire to the rarefied air of shooting for profit or taking an award winning picture, at least not at the beginning. What is Pentax doing to get their attention? Promoting some club that requires a secret handshake and then you’ll be let in to get the full details of the benefits of membership. But only if you figure it out yourself or find a place like this forum that will help you understand the brand. How many times have you read or responded to a new owner wondering if his Dad’s old Spotmatic camera lenses will work on his new K100D? He should be buying the camera because of that reason not hoping they will work after the fact.

I only have to look at my wife to see how poor a job Pentax has done. When I started showing her this wonderful hobby, she had never heard of Pentax. But was aware of Canon, Nikon and Sony. Thought that C/N was the only way to go if you were serious about photography. That’s what the average first time buyer sees and thinks.

I for one am going to take the opportunity that Pentax has given me to submit an email to tell them that I am a member of the secret club and have learned the special handshake. But that I want them to make it easier for a new owner to understand why it’s worth joining up.
08-20-2007, 06:23 AM   #37
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QuoteOriginally posted by Peter Zack Quote
And this is the point of this debate. Weíre already here as owners of Pentax gear. We understand the brand and in many ways have become Ďshareholdersí. Many of us and countless others not on this forum have helped this brand stay afloat since the marketing department has done such a poor job over the years of presenting the excellent reasons to consider Pentax as a viable option. My feelings over this Pentaxian/nationalism/patriotism thing is that itís not a campaign that will attract any new potential owners to consider Pentax. What does promoting ďPentaxianĒ tell a consumer about the brand? Does it explain the long history of Pentax and itís contribution to camera or SLR development? I think not. Does it discuss the great SR, SMC coatings, DA* lens quality, Weather sealed body, unique Hyper program modes, Legacy lens options, etc, etc, etc?

If I was a new consumer that had only ever used a P&S and was looking to get into the DSLR market Iíd see these very good TV and print ads Nikon runs and any special event that Canon seems to predominate. The vast majority of new owners will start out just shooting family album stuff and going on vacation with their cameras. They donít aspire to the rarefied air of shooting for profit or taking an award winning picture, at least not at the beginning. What is Pentax doing to get their attention? Promoting some club that requires a secret handshake and then youíll be let in to get the full details of the benefits of membership. But only if you figure it out yourself or find a place like this forum that will help you understand the brand. How many times have you read or responded to a new owner wondering if his Dadís old Spotmatic camera lenses will work on his new K100D? He should be buying the camera because of that reason not hoping they will work after the fact.

I only have to look at my wife to see how poor a job Pentax has done. When I started showing her this wonderful hobby, she had never heard of Pentax. But was aware of Canon, Nikon and Sony. Thought that C/N was the only way to go if you were serious about photography. Thatís what the average first time buyer sees and thinks.

I for one am going to take the opportunity that Pentax has given me to submit an email to tell them that I am a member of the secret club and have learned the special handshake. But that I want them to make it easier for a new owner to understand why itís worth joining up.
Amen, Peter, amen. I myself am finding it hard to push people to try Pentax. They see my pictures, but they think much of the success I had in taking pictures is due to my skills and not the camera. I beg to disagree on this point.

Though I'm a firm believer that cameras are simply tools, using my Pentax helped me achieve a greater level of success simply by having good color renditions, spot-on ergonomics, etc. Even the backwards compatibility also helped, since I was able to buy really good, used lenses that I haven't had access to in my old system.

In any case, it's quite jarring for me that people who ask me advice about what camera to buy even know Sony's and Olympus' DSLRs more than Pentax itself as a brand (much less their DSLRs).

Yes, I'll still keep plugging Pentax just because it represents value for the money and great quality, but Pentax shouldn't rely on current customers to spread the word and initiate a grassroots approach. They should be more aggressive to market their products. It's as if Pentax's marketing isn't even proud of their own products, which is curious since Pentax engineering did a great job on their bodies and lenses. The awards are already there, so what are they waiting for?
08-20-2007, 07:50 AM   #38
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QuoteOriginally posted by Edvinas Quote
I can see that your understanding of "patriotism" is completely wrong
In common modern usage, one is generally used as more of a slander than the other. That is the way I meant them, as I clarified in my post.

08-20-2007, 08:26 AM   #39
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In any case, it's quite jarring for me that people who ask me advice about what camera to buy even know Sony's and Olympus' DSLRs more than Pentax itself as a brand (much less their DSLRs).

I have just googled DSLR Guess what came top of the list?

1) Samsung
2)Nikon
3)Canon
4)Sony

Pentax was not mentioned until 3 pages in to the search. Talk about a lack of advertising

Even the big Photographic shops advertise N/C on all of their front pages and shop windows. I walked around my local shopping centre today we have a Jessops and an independant.

Jessops window was full of Nikon DSLR and P&S plus some Canon units not a single Pentax on the display!!! Inside the same story. Only a K100D and a K10d on show no lenses, Flash,or other pentax items. A whole cabinet devoted to Nikon and Canon and even Sigma. I asked about Pentax Products and the Sales rep had to look it all up as they had not a single clue what a K10D did or what could be used with it. They knew almost everything a Nikon could do and when asked what was a good start for a beginner I was told a Nikon D40!!!!

The independant shop did not stock Pentax equipment but could get hold of it in 7 to 10 working days. Had shed loads of N & C on the shelf though!!!

Come on Pentax stand up and be counted stop resting on past glory and promote the wonderful equipment we in the know are all enjoying.
08-20-2007, 08:32 AM   #40
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QuoteOriginally posted by vinzer Quote
Amen, Peter, amen. I myself am finding it hard to push people to try Pentax. They see my pictures, but they think much of the success I had in taking pictures is due to my skills and not the camera. I beg to disagree on this point.
Why is it that we continually say it is the photographer and not the camera that makes a beautiful image when we talk about others, but default into the "my equipment did it" mode when it comes to ourselves. I am quite convinced that a competent photographer can switch brands without compromising his quality, provided he has some "getting acquainted" time and that most probably goes for you too!.

QuoteQuote:
Though I'm a firm believer that cameras are simply tools, using my Pentax helped me achieve a greater level of success simply by having good color renditions, spot-on ergonomics, etc. Even the backwards compatibility also helped, since I was able to buy really good, used lenses that I haven't had access to in my old system.
You just summed up a denial of sorts of your first paragraph. I am fully convinced that the differences in color rendition, ergonomics and backwards compatibility between brands are so small as to be insignificant. In most cases it is price/performance level and plain old sentimentality. One camera just "feels" good. You make up for an emotional choice by justifying it afterwards with "measurbation" quotes. We all do, me too!

Why did I buy Pentax?

1. Right price/performance
2. Sentimental reasons (my first SLR was a K1000)
3. Give Canon the middle finger for not listening to the Pro1 users

Waaaaay down the line come the lens compatibility and ergonomics. To be honest, I still don't know where to leave my pink and ringfinger, just like on the Pro1 they dangle underneath the camera body. My old lenses don't auto anything, the fact that I "could" use them if I wanted to is really quite theoretical.

QuoteQuote:
In any case, it's quite jarring for me that people who ask me advice about what camera to buy even know Sony's and Olympus' DSLRs more than Pentax itself as a brand (much less their DSLRs).
Here, I would say a heartfelt YES! You are absolutely right in that the lack of targeting in Pentax marketing becomes apparent.

Was it somebody else on this thread who said something like, and I'm paraphrasing "Why target existing users? Go convince new ones!"

QuoteQuote:
Yes, I'll still keep plugging Pentax just because it represents value for the money and great quality, but Pentax shouldn't rely on current customers to spread the word and initiate a grassroots approach. They should be more aggressive to market their products. It's as if Pentax's marketing isn't even proud of their own products, which is curious since Pentax engineering did a great job on their bodies and lenses. The awards are already there, so what are they waiting for?
Again, I agree with that statement 100% ! Except for the plugging, every user has "his" camera. I will try to listen before I tell them to "buy Pentax". Just like I would not plug Linux if I believe it does not suit someone, Windows is perfectly OK for some, others thrive on Apple.

Pentax has nothing to be ashamed of, quite the opposite! Now if they take over the task of being proud of their equipment from us, we can start being proud of our shots!


Last edited by newmikey; 08-20-2007 at 08:37 AM.
08-20-2007, 08:50 AM   #41
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It's shouldn't be surprising that many prospective DSLR buyers already know Olympus and Sony. After all, those two manufacturers have almost as strong of a foothold among P&S cameras as Canon and Nikon. Also, there's nothing wrong with Pentax targeting existing Pentax owners. There's two ways to increase sales...#1 attract new buyers or #2 get existing buyers to buy more equipment. Ideally, you'd like both, but that's not always possible. Why I became a Pentaxian depends on whether you're talking film or digital. I originally started using Pentax gear because of it's price and the warmth of it's color rendition. I bought a Pentax DSLR primarily because it would work with my existing lenses. The fact that it's a great camera was secondary.
08-20-2007, 05:37 PM   #42
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QuoteOriginally posted by newmikey Quote
Why is it that we continually say it is the photographer and not the camera that makes a beautiful image when we talk about others, but default into the "my equipment did it" mode when it comes to ourselves. I am quite convinced that a competent photographer can switch brands without compromising his quality, provided he has some "getting acquainted" time and that most probably goes for you too!.

You just summed up a denial of sorts of your first paragraph. I am fully convinced that the differences in color rendition, ergonomics and backwards compatibility between brands are so small as to be insignificant. In most cases it is price/performance level and plain old sentimentality. One camera just "feels" good. You make up for an emotional choice by justifying it afterwards with "measurbation" quotes. We all do, me too!
Haha, I might seem like I'm contradicting myself, but believe me, there's a difference. Maybe how I worded things isn't doesn't accurately depict what I was thinking of.

Since I'm coming from a really aged DSLR to the K10D, I do appreciate all the newer features, however small they may be, that came from my upgrade. I'm one to share praises garnered with the equipment that I use (I'm weird in that sense, haha). It's not really brand loyalty, since I might move on to the next better system should Pentax fail me at some point.

You raise good points, thanks for sharing.
08-21-2007, 04:26 PM   #43
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Got my invite yesterday, I think because I was lucky enough to get a shot into the Pentaxphotogallery.

Regards,

Ted
08-21-2007, 06:10 PM   #44
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QuoteOriginally posted by MRRiley Quote

Right now, probably the easiest and possibly most emersive venue for mass marketing, is the internet and this is precisely what the "pentaxian" thing is all about. Hopefully Pentax Marketing (are you reading this Ned?) will keep up the press and pull out all the stops. Use all the tools in the box! Canon and Nikon certainly do.

Does Pentax need to back up the marketing with products and availability? By all means, but they still have to market the brand, otherwise we become another piece of photographic history like Minolta...
Bang on Mike!

A little preface: I've been in the market for my first DSLR for some months now (with money soon coming), so needless to say I have been reading A LOT of forum posts, opinions, reviews, etc. I have to say that if I was to choose a kit solely based on the users and their tone... it would be Pentax all the way. I am totally impressed with this forum and the way topics are discussed here. On most other forums (we all know the ones) a thread longer than a page usually has a built in cringe factor... things get ugly and heated by page two and if you can stomach getting to page three, just to get a solid opinion for goodnesssake, you are most certainly turned away by some yahoo with more gumption than intelligence. The short of it... good to be here! And, will be proud to play with my K10D when it arrives.

My marketing two-cents: I also hope that Pentax gets it act together... and I think they will. They certainly have the quality equipment to back it up... without hype, I might add.

the 70's were quite the boom for Nikon, and they took great advantage of that. Pentax was quite the player then as well... but Minolta had some more aggressive tactics and got "only from the minds of Minolta" embedded in my young mind for quite some time. There were a few other companies during that time, including in other industries, that blitzed the market with jargon hype and were out to make the big bucks. (Heck, even before that... look at what the Beef Lobby did to the Pork industry by brainwashing everyone in to thinking that if you did not completely cook your Pork Chop to an almost wooden texture that you would get deathly sick. Well... that's just how that goes... we see it in politics as well.) This saturated the market and stretched production to the point that high-quality could not keep up with demand... and the blitzers suffered in the end. Canon started to pick up steam in the 90's, and as far as many "Canonites" are concerned 2002-2004 was the beginning of time.

Several companies, Pentax included, I feel took the high road... laid back... stayed focused on the best optics possible and did things when they were right. I applaud Pentax for wanting to stay close to their customer and create a community to get a conversation going to get closer to answering what the community (us) want out of their equipment. I certainly don't want a monster like Canon (their marketing machine) telling me that I have to have 21.1MP. Come on! No I don't! I don't want them telling me that I HAVE to use the body that can spin plates and massage me at ISO 3200. Come on! What photographer needs to do that? Ansel didn't... Annie doesn't. Ooooh! Don't you dare get a Pentax, just look at the noise levels at ISO 1600! How often am I going to photograph a half solid blue half solid black subject and then zoom in 100% and call it a photograph?! Give me a break!

Some of the worst photo's I've seen, still and moving picture, have been taken on some of the highest quality most expensive equipment you can get on earth right now. Even Hubble takes some read doozies that are good for little more than bin lining. Then again, give Leibowitz a coolpix and she'll turn out something that will compel you. It's been said here several times... it's who's behind that lens that makes a photograph... not the neighbor with the d2 who hasn't the foggiest idea how to use it.

::deep breath::

This forum is great. Glad I found it. Can't wait to upload some shots in the next few weeks.
08-21-2007, 07:30 PM   #45
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QuoteOriginally posted by vinzer Quote
Amen, Peter, amen. I myself am finding it hard to push people to try Pentax. They see my pictures, but they think much of the success I had in taking pictures is due to my skills and not the camera. I beg to disagree on this point.

Though I'm a firm believer that cameras are simply tools, using my Pentax helped me achieve a greater level of success simply by having good color renditions, spot-on ergonomics, etc. Even the backwards compatibility also helped, since I was able to buy really good, used lenses that I haven't had access to in my old system.

In any case, it's quite jarring for me that people who ask me advice about what camera to buy even know Sony's and Olympus' DSLRs more than Pentax itself as a brand (much less their DSLRs).

Yes, I'll still keep plugging Pentax just because it represents value for the money and great quality, but Pentax shouldn't rely on current customers to spread the word and initiate a grassroots approach. They should be more aggressive to market their products. It's as if Pentax's marketing isn't even proud of their own products, which is curious since Pentax engineering did a great job on their bodies and lenses. The awards are already there, so what are they waiting for?
I'm with you there as well, vinzer. Well, to a point. There is the side of the marketing equation that's the Rolls Royce approach. You're not likely to see a RR billboard, commercial, print ad... but, if you know you need one, you know where to get it and you know others who have one... and you are in your own circle. Not saying that Pentax is the Rolls Royce of cameras (it's a damn fine piece of gear, in my opinion... but, i won't go RR). I think there's a lot to be said for letting customer opinion be the face of a company. Look at the amount of complaints of Canon, Nikon and Sony gear... mostly from users saying things like "It didn't work the way they said it would!" Pentax certainly isn't infallible, but they are certainly not ones for hype bigger than they can deliver. Canon certainly is... and Nikon, pushing a new model and then 18 months later pushing out an update that bags on it's predecessor is pretty common. Heck, right now Nikon users are all abuzz about a new D300, or D200x... whatevertheheck... and what does Nikon do to take care of customers? They pull the current model off of the shelves. That's customer care for you. I have found that Pentax user opinions are right on par with how the gear performs. Pentax users know what they want, they know what they have and know how to use it... because, for the most part we're photographers (at all levels) that want to have a close relationship with our equipment... not just set everything on automatic and blame the camera for bad photo's. I frankly don't want Pentax to be flooded with brand new "used to be point and shooters" wanting the cheap DSLR and filling forums with complaints and their unwillingness to learn how to actually use a camera. I'll take the RELIABLE Pentax word of mouth to the hyped and marketeered big boys any day and everyday.
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