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05-25-2013, 04:10 PM   #361
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Pentax needs to regularly put out some teasers. Keep the public excited. And let the users know what to expect in the upcoming months. Right now, nothing is clear except the "development" of a full frame and possibly an APS-C, neither of which have any hint at a release date. Things have been extremely boring since ricoh stepped in.

05-25-2013, 04:38 PM   #362
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QuoteOriginally posted by Uluru Quote
I also thought that Pentax could open 10 real b&m shops wordwide, in Apple-like style, to show people the Pentax experience.

• They could immediately try medium format camera and lenses
• Setup a studio booth with models once a day
• Full range of DSLRs, inside their environment;
—in one corner a DSLRs in rainforest-like wet environment
— next to it a DSLR half buried in deset-like sand, etc.
• A full range of K-mount optics
• All compacts
• Binoculars
• History of Pentax;
— lots of images with the Beatles, with Beatles music playing
— first SLR, then Pentax through decades
• Then short showcases and presentations "How a (D)SLR is made", or "the art of lens design", or, "wedding photography for mums and dads", "beach photography", etc.
• Weekly workshops on how to get to know your camera in fine detail
• Etc.

Where shops would be located?
I thought Tokyo and Hong Kong obviously, then New Delhi, eastern and western US coast (New York, San Francisco?), one in London, then Paris, one in Moscow. One in Sydney or Melbourne Australia. Etc.

If Leica can do it, Pentax can do it too. They have lots of history to show.
Nothing grandiose; just presence to allow experience. That's all.
Don't get me wrong, I would love to see Pentax in a store, but I just don't know that I want to see them doing this. The p&s isn't what it was a couple of years ago as cell phone camera have improved -so there won't be as many sales on the lower end. While I certainly don't think of my cell phone as a camera, people who used to carry a point and shoot now just turn to the phone. This leaves you with DSLRs and while there are a lot of them out there, a lot of them are entry level models that were purchased on discounts from big box stores.

Pentax current pricing strategies are trying to get everyone on the same page, but these prices are still not what is listed on the Pentax page. Apple stores work because their products cost the same wherever you go. You try it in the store and buy it because it isn't like you are going to get a enter deal somewhere else. But I won't be buying directly from the Pentax web store and I don't want them to force the few retailers that there are to match the web store pricing.

Plus, 10 stores globally in markets that already have local access to Pentax doesn't help the complaints that Pentax isn't accessible. If I am going to ny I can go to adorama and B&H and hold a Pentax. That still doesn't help me get my hands on one in Pittsburgh.

The other thing to consider is that apple opened apple stores after the success of the iMac. They had been losing market share for years, but with the colored iMacs and a great marketing campaign they started coming back. Then they opened the stores while they were hot and they knew that had the release of the iPod coming in the months that followed the store openings. Pentax would need to release a product and support it with a huge marketing campaign to make people want to go to a Pentax store. Right now they don't even have a marketing presence.
05-25-2013, 07:05 PM   #363
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QuoteOriginally posted by Allison Quote
Don't get me wrong, I would love to see Pentax in a store, but I just don't know that I want to see them doing this. The p&s isn't what it was a couple of years ago as cell phone camera have improved -so there won't be as many sales on the lower end. While I certainly don't think of my cell phone as a camera, people who used to carry a point and shoot now just turn to the phone. This leaves you with DSLRs and while there are a lot of them out there, a lot of them are entry level models that were purchased on discounts from big box stores.

Pentax current pricing strategies are trying to get everyone on the same page, but these prices are still not what is listed on the Pentax page. Apple stores work because their products cost the same wherever you go.
It's about experience, and that is why Jobs wanted own stores to carry Apple's experience.
No matter what the local retailer is, it is highly likely that a clerk will offer to a customer something else rather than Pentax.
There is no real taste of the Pentax experience, no one buys, and prejudices go on and on.

Apple was in the exactly the same boat as Pentax is now. They did not have iPhone, no iPads, just Macs and iPods, and they still wanted people to have a genuine experience. Try everything there is that a brand offers. Leica does that same.

Because local retailer may or may not have the camera, never a whole range, never every single lens. And retailer's clerk will not work in the interest of Pentax, be sure about it.

Just a few stores; the worst thing that may happen to Pentax is that they will double people's experience and awareness. Jumping from nothing into something is a great goal in itself.

PS. Same rationale you offer was confronted to Apple by ALL industry brands. They predicted a failure of Apple's retail. The move was highly ridiculed. But it has proven itself, to be a major commotion in Apple's success story. Because people could finally experience: try, educate about, and buy those beautiful and functional things.
05-25-2013, 08:35 PM - 2 Likes   #364
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Pentax could do one or both of the following to have store presence (if Fuji and Oly are in the stores, why isn't Pentax?). Both involve committing capital to the business. Neither requires extravagant advertising.
  1. Offer Dealer Credit arrangements.
  2. LEASE and STAFF with its own employees a Pentax section in strategic stores in strategic markets.
    1. They wouldn't need to open complete Pentax Stores
    2. They wouldn't need to depend on Dealer salespeople



Last edited by monochrome; 05-26-2013 at 06:28 AM.
05-25-2013, 08:53 PM   #365
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QuoteOriginally posted by monochrome Quote
Pentax could do one or both of the following to have store presence (if Fuji and Oly are in the stores, why isn't Pentax?). Both involve committing capital to the business. Neither requires extravagant advertising.
  1. Offer Dealer Credit arrangements.
  2. LEASE and STAFF with its own employees a Pentax section is strategic stores in strategic markets.
    1. They wouldn't need to open complete Pentax Stores
    2. The wouldn't need to depend on Dealer salespeople
I like that part 2. Very clever.
However, all that does not mean that Pentax should not try opening a wholly dedicated Pentax experience and rich history store somewhere. I see Tokyo first. Then China somewhere.
All these small steps would mean an order of magnitude more presence before people's eyes.
05-25-2013, 09:09 PM   #366
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QuoteOriginally posted by Uluru Quote
Apple was in the exactly the same boat as Pentax is now. They did not have iPhone, no iPads, just Macs and iPods, and they still wanted people to have a genuine experience. Try everything there is that a brand offers. Leica does that same.
Apple was not at all in the same position. At the time of the apple stores opening, apple had released the iMac, won a bunch of design awards, and captured consumer attention with a national, highly visible advertising campaign. Additionally, while iMac may not have been available in best buy, they were available in compusa (which was still strong then) and local computer shops in all major us markets. I was able to buy a Mac after trying it hands on in Oxford, Ohio.

While I love my k5IIs, Pentax has no major new release that is so awe inspiring that people either want to switch brands or buy a dslr for the first time. They have absolutely no us advertising campaign and they are not available in a majority of larger us cities. I cant hand hold a pentax in Pittsbrugh, Erie, Cleveland, Columbus, or Cincannati. I have to go to the DC area or NYC to get my hands on one. A Pentax experience would be good, but no one will bother going to the store in the first place unless there is something revolutionary for them to buy and a marketing campaign to let people know that the next big thing is here. These are critical differences between apple and Pentax.

And Leica has stores, yes. Leicas are also more expensive than pentax and much more expensive than many of us are willing to spend for an aps-c. That added expense helps leica keep a store going.

QuoteOriginally posted by monochrome Quote
  1. Offer Dealer Credit arrangements.
  2. LEASE and STAFF with its own employees a Pentax section is strategic stores in strategic markets.
    1. They wouldn't need to open complete Pentax Stores
    2. The wouldn't need to depend on Dealer salespeople
I see this as a much better positioning for Pentax than their own stores. It would certainly help to get them in more US markets than just one store on the east coast and one on the west where they already have Pentax gear available.

And yeah, Pentax can't just focus on the US market; I know that. But right now they are rarely thought of at all. They will need to address their US marketing if they want to grow in their positioning.
05-25-2013, 11:41 PM   #367
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QuoteOriginally posted by Uluru Quote
I also thought that Pentax could open 10 real b&m shops wordwide, in Apple-like style, to show people the Pentax experience.

• They could immediately try medium format camera and lenses
• Setup a studio booth with models once a day
• Full range of DSLRs, inside their environment;
—in one corner a DSLRs in rainforest-like wet environment
— next to it a DSLR half buried in deset-like sand, etc.
• A full range of K-mount optics
• All compacts
• Binoculars
• History of Pentax;
— lots of images with the Beatles, with Beatles music playing
— first SLR, then Pentax through decades
• Then short showcases and presentations "How a (D)SLR is made", or "the art of lens design", or, "wedding photography for mums and dads", "beach photography", etc.
• Weekly workshops on how to get to know your camera in fine detail
• Etc.

Where shops would be located?
I thought Tokyo and Hong Kong obviously, then New Delhi, eastern and western US coast (New York, San Francisco?), one in London, then Paris, one in Moscow. One in Sydney or Melbourne Australia. Etc.

If Leica can do it, Pentax can do it too. They have lots of history to show.
Nothing grandiose; just presence to allow experience. That's all.
So, Pentax already have the Pentax Square in Shinjuku:

http://www.pentax.co.jp/english/news/2007/200710.html

http://www.lonelyplanet.com/japan/tokyo/sights/museum/pentax-square

There, you will find an amazing art gallery where artists will exhibit their Pentax-photos. Generally, 1-2 artists exhibit there for a month, then it changes. Some amazing stuff. There's also the full range of cameras that Pentax ever made exhibited in the window, quite a treat. The rest of the place consists of two spaces, one where they exhibit the gear they make, from the MX-1 through the K5iis to the 645D. Very nice playground.

The other space, then have a huge cupboard with all the lenses they make. It's locked, but you can ask to try one, and there's a counter - think, "genius bar" - where you can talk to a tech about your gear, and drop it off for CLA or repair or sensor cleaning or whatnot.

They also sell various doodad's in there. I actually do not /know/ if you could walk in with enough cash and walk away with a new 645D, but I suspect that you might just....I've usually picked up hard-to-find widgets (say, a hood for a DA*) there. When asking for something that the shop-clerk knows to be cheaper in regular commerce, my experience is that they've said "Well, I have that in stock, but it'll be cheaper at Yodobashi..."

It's a very "classy" establishment, not overrun (but still with a good number of people whenever I've been there), with really knowledgable staff. Very nice looking, very much more classy than an Apple-store

I'm give to understand that they also organize various other events and lectures and such, but (i) I am not Japanese and (ii) I am usually just rushing by when in Japan on business, so I have not dug into this.

Oh, and they proudly display the three FA Limited front, left, and center around the shop. They're /really/ proud of these (can't say that I disagree, it just makes me happy)

So, I'd say that Pentax already have pretty much what you ask for already - in Tokyo (obviously ).

Would it make commercial sense to open one outside of Tokyo? If so, I hope that they'll think of Paris first and that it'll be staffed by Japanese staff trained in the Tokyo outfit to the same standards.
05-26-2013, 03:11 AM   #368
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I think pentax should go the way where they hire staff and put them into this electronic warehouse chains where they have to possibility to talk to the customer directicly. I proposed this idea to the pentax sales chief in Germany and he said they will not do something like that , because it would be soo expensive.....

05-26-2013, 04:02 AM   #369
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New Delhi? They have zero sales presence here in India, but tremendous brand recall - all the older photogs here cut their teeth on a Spottie or a K1000. They are just not willing to capitalise on this goodwill.
05-26-2013, 04:50 AM   #370
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QuoteOriginally posted by Allison Quote
While I love my k5IIs, Pentax has no major new release that is so awe inspiring that people either want to switch brands or buy a dslr for the first time. They have absolutely no us advertising campaign and they are not available in a majority of larger us cities. I cant hand hold a pentax in Pittsbrugh, Erie, Cleveland, Columbus, or Cincannati. I have to go to the DC area or NYC to get my hands on one. A Pentax experience would be good, but no one will bother going to the store in the first place unless there is something revolutionary for them to buy and a marketing campaign to let people know that the next big thing is here. These are critical differences between apple and Pentax.
Allison -- Dodd Camera in Cleveland carries Pentax. Bought my K-30 there. They even had a 645D.
05-26-2013, 08:07 AM - 1 Like   #371
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QuoteOriginally posted by Allison Quote
They had been losing market share for years, but with the colored iMacs . . . they started coming back.
Maybe Pentax should sell colored cameras.
05-26-2013, 08:30 AM   #372
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QuoteOriginally posted by lytrytyr Quote
Maybe Pentax should sell colored cameras
That'll never happen!
05-26-2013, 08:45 AM   #373
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QuoteOriginally posted by Cynog Ap Brychan Quote
That'll never happen!
Never!



05-26-2013, 10:45 AM   #374
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QuoteOriginally posted by IchabodCrane Quote
Allison -- Dodd Camera in Cleveland carries Pentax. Bought my K-30 there. They even had a 645D.
Good to know. Now I only have to drive 2 1/2 hours to try one out. Is the pricing competitive to adorama and B&H?

I know when I was at Midwest Photo in Columbus they laughed at me for being a Pentax shooter. I defended my decision and I love my cameras and lenses, but I just wish Pentax would do something to get their name back out there in the US.
05-26-2013, 12:31 PM   #375
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QuoteOriginally posted by Allison Quote
Good to know. Now I only have to drive 2 1/2 hours to try one out. Is the pricing competitive to adorama and B&H?

I know when I was at Midwest Photo in Columbus they laughed at me for being a Pentax shooter. I defended my decision and I love my cameras and lenses, but I just wish Pentax would do something to get their name back out there in the US.
I don't know their current pricing. I bought my K-30 when it was released and paid MSRP (which the NYC stores were also charging at the time).

BTW, their Pentax "expert" is also a Pentax user.
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