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07-18-2015, 07:23 AM - 1 Like   #3901
mee
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QuoteOriginally posted by Trey45 Quote
I asked if he ever used a Pentax 645Z MF camera, he asked me "Does Pentax still make cameras?" I had to walk away from him at that point. I simply could not take a "Certified Professional Photographer" seriously after being asked that question by one.
Decades of not seriously marketing in this country is the reason for this.. I had a somewhat similar experience when talking cameras with my ophthalmologist who just bought a Canon setup.. I said I shoot with Pentax and his response was (paraphrasing) I remember them back in the 70s, I didn't know they were still around. hahaha

I think if Ricoh put the money up to start advertising Pentax cameras on TV and on fixed spots at major sporting events, we'd see a leap of interest in the brand. Hopefully they do something soon after the FF body is available.. Who is going to buy the product if most of the people in the market don't know it exists? It seems many who do know it exists have already bought a digital system... Pentax needs better US marketing!!!!

07-18-2015, 07:23 AM   #3902
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I got my first DSLR (K-7) late 2009. On Jan 2010, I happened to join a short sight seen cruise at Valdivia, Southern Chile and there was other guy with K-7.
Few months later I participed in one day workshop and the instructor had a K-7!
Now, in last workshops Pentax has igualed Nikon and passed Canon in quantity! I guess that is mostly to the fact that the instructor uses Pentax and people see how great his photos are - there are quite a lot converts, especially from Canon. But it's nice to see that especially with K-3 and to some point even with K-5 & K-5iiS, Pentax has become more popular here in Chile.
And this is even though there's no official dealer or shop that carries Pentax. I my self have been dealing with Amazon, Adorama and B&H directly for new stuff and with KEH and PF market place for second hand lenses.
I guess, what I'm trying to say is "We are every day less rare" (if that means few, if it means grazy we're still there). ;-P
07-18-2015, 08:02 AM   #3903
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Why don't they advertise?

QuoteOriginally posted by mee Quote
I think if Ricoh put the money up to start advertising Pentax cameras on TV and on fixed spots at major sporting events, we'd see a leap of interest in the brand. Hopefully they do something soon after the FF body is available.. Who is going to buy the product if most of the people in the market don't know it exists? It seems many who do know it exists have already bought a digital system... Pentax needs better US marketing!!!!
I agree, but why don't they do this? Surely company like Ricoh knows this. Have they just written off the North American market.

Indeed, at least in my area its gone from bad to worse. A few years ago here you could still buy a Pentax at Best Buy. Maybe you can now, but they don't have one on display like they used to. The local camera stores we had, one of which did carry Pentax's back in the film days, have died with the two new ones are exclusively Canon. Waxman's in downtown Denver that used to carry Pentax's is gone, although I guess there's a Pentax dealer somewhere in Denver. The only Pentax dealer I've run across recently at all was in Jackson's Hole, although that's interesting given the huge amount of photography done in that location.

Anyhow, in terms of marking in North America, Pentax just isn't. Why?
07-18-2015, 12:00 PM   #3904
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QuoteOriginally posted by Pat_H Quote
I agree, but why don't they do this? Surely company like Ricoh knows this. Have they just written off the North American market.

Indeed, at least in my area its gone from bad to worse. A few years ago here you could still buy a Pentax at Best Buy. Maybe you can now, but they don't have one on display like they used to. The local camera stores we had, one of which did carry Pentax's back in the film days, have died with the two new ones are exclusively Canon. Waxman's in downtown Denver that used to carry Pentax's is gone, although I guess there's a Pentax dealer somewhere in Denver. The only Pentax dealer I've run across recently at all was in Jackson's Hole, although that's interesting given the huge amount of photography done in that location.

Anyhow, in terms of marking in North America, Pentax just isn't. Why?
I suspect they are going by charts and graphs made by people who have many abbreviations before and after their names... but even so, the charts and graphs can mislead.

I have yet to hand another photographer a Pentax body and have them tell me it doesn't feel right in their hands. The product is there, it just needs to be 'sold.' A lot of the beginner Canon and Nikon folks buy today based on name, brand, and recommendation from people who, when they were beginners, bought based on name, brand, and recommendation who bought based on years and years of strong advertising back in the 80s and 90s. Both Nikon and (more so) Canon heavily marketed SLR cameras back then in the US and to great success... they 'own' the marketshare here. I still remember the commercials!

But that doesn't mean things can't change.. It is a softer grasp on the market I suspect than many consider... I dare say perhaps even Ricoh/Pentax.

That said, the short answer is probably because it costs (a lot of) money and is still a risk. Perhaps they feel USA wants the FF body and APS-C wasn't going to cut it so why bother with this market... so maybe when the FF is out they will advertise more?

Adam, could you ask Ricoh reps sometime about this? Why don't they advertise more in the USA?

07-18-2015, 02:54 PM   #3905
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I am not certain but from what I have seen in previous years it seems Nikon and Canon throw always the newest stuff on the market - may it be video or what ever else is fancy at the time. With Pentax usually it seems they wait and test to produce something that works well before they put it out.
And yes, the commercials too are to some part the reason for it. From all magazines I have read in the past couple of years I have seen Olympus, Nikon, Sony and Canon commercials but the big A4 pages of Pentax? Cannot remember a single one of them.
But then not putting that money into commercials also means the over all costs for a Pentax are lower than for a Nikon or Canon of the same quality...
And yes...for some strange reason Pentax is often not on display in the stores either. One of the big Scandinavian stores does have it on stock but they haven't got a single one on display. Makes one wonder if Canon and Nikon pay them for being put out on display too. Gets funny when you get in there and actually buy a Pentax, because when I bought my last one they told me what I great lens I had bought but that so few would but Pentax these days. Who wonders? They have classes for beginners on Canon and on Nikon, not on Pentax. Pentaxes aren't on display. And I seriously wonder if when a new customer who has never had a DSLR (or for that matter SLR) comes in and wants to purchase his/her first one...do they tell them about Pentax?

I remember that when I bought my old K20D I had made a list of all advantages / disadvantages compared to a similar priced Nikon (D60?) and Canon. The Canon was kicked out of consideration rather early. I knew I did not want to start Video as I have never been interested in it anyway. So the main differences between both were:
Pentax: anti shake in the body (yeah! Saves one quite a bit of money over time) but no video
Nikon: no anti shake in the body, but video.
The Nikon was if I remember correctly 100€ more expensive. Which made me wonder what they had forgotten to implement (except for the obvious anti shake) that they were able to price it that low despite a then fancy new technology included...
So my decision was made - I only had to hold it before purchase, as if it had not fit my hand I would have had to start the search from scratch again.

But then...while everybody else these days "Is Nikon" and by that is the same as his neighbor and the neighbor after that... we are a special bread and not like everybody else on the block ;-)
Maybe that's the reason why Pentax is the only camera on the market that still is delivered with a printed manual? There are so few of us that they cannot count on us asking next door
07-18-2015, 04:33 PM   #3906
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QuoteOriginally posted by Lille Ulven Quote
I am not certain but from what I have seen in previous years it seems Nikon and Canon throw always the newest stuff on the market - may it be video or what ever else is fancy at the time. With Pentax usually it seems they wait and test to produce something that works well before they put it out.
And yes, the commercials too are to some part the reason for it. From all magazines I have read in the past couple of years I have seen Olympus, Nikon, Sony and Canon commercials but the big A4 pages of Pentax? Cannot remember a single one of them.
But then not putting that money into commercials also means the over all costs for a Pentax are lower than for a Nikon or Canon of the same quality...
And yes...for some strange reason Pentax is often not on display in the stores either. One of the big Scandinavian stores does have it on stock but they haven't got a single one on display. Makes one wonder if Canon and Nikon pay them for being put out on display too. Gets funny when you get in there and actually buy a Pentax, because when I bought my last one they told me what I great lens I had bought but that so few would but Pentax these days. Who wonders? They have classes for beginners on Canon and on Nikon, not on Pentax. Pentaxes aren't on display. And I seriously wonder if when a new customer who has never had a DSLR (or for that matter SLR) comes in and wants to purchase his/her first one...do they tell them about Pentax?
Ads are expensive you are right but inventory is too. If you have to have a few bodies and lenses everywhere for everybody to see, that means you need to have a somewhat absolute number of gear just for the show (and if it sell you need a new one to replace it). You also need the demonstration gear. To do that in dozen thousand place in the world is not light investment. Worse it play for every model you have.

On the opposite you can be present everywhere on the internet without any demonstration model and with inventory in maybe 1/10 or 1/100 the number of places.

It is simply not feasible to have that much inventory if you don't see much. It could make sense to increase the presence, so the inventory and Ads but then you might not be able to do it everywhere at the same time and you may limit the number of models and countries where you do it.
07-18-2015, 04:43 PM   #3907
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So, why not increase the web presence? Post lots of youtube videos, and have users do the same. Take out some well-placed web ads to direct viewers to those videos. Heie's shots of a mud-covered (or was it sand-covered) body that gets cleaned off and keeps shooting could have been used to go viral. Use the power of the internet to reach lots of viewers (especially younger ones) with minimal financial investment.
07-19-2015, 01:19 AM   #3908
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QuoteOriginally posted by sholtzma Quote
So, why not increase the web presence? Post lots of youtube videos, and have users do the same. Take out some well-placed web ads to direct viewers to those videos. Heie's shots of a mud-covered (or was it sand-covered) body that gets cleaned off and keeps shooting could have been used to go viral. Use the power of the internet to reach lots of viewers (especially younger ones) with minimal financial investment.
Because this "viral" thing is theory. Ads on the internet are not especially cheap and many have ads blocker and just don't click. As for videos there a few that go viral, the others nobody remember them. It is not possible for everything to go viral by itself and cost fast less than it should because of that.

07-19-2015, 03:17 AM   #3909
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I think Pentax confuse a lot of people with their product line. They seem to be wildly inconsistent, whereas you can see Nikon and others following a logical structure. Pentax products either completely tank, like the K-01 or are wild successes like the Q. Completely miss the point, like the K-S1 or dominate a new niche, like the 645s. There seems to be a lack of coherency in evolution of lines, of family styling or product life span. It all seems a bit random, punting Haily Marys up the field. Who's in charge? They really need to sort this out, play to their strengths and stop confusing people.
07-19-2015, 03:37 AM   #3910
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QuoteOriginally posted by plooksta Quote
I think Pentax confuse a lot of people with their product line. They seem to be wildly inconsistent, whereas you can see Nikon and others following a logical structure. Pentax products either completely tank, like the K-01 or are wild successes like the Q. Completely miss the point, like the K-S1 or dominate a new niche, like the 645s. There seems to be a lack of coherency in evolution of lines, of family styling or product life span. It all seems a bit random, punting Haily Marys up the field. Who's in charge? They really need to sort this out, play to their strengths and stop confusing people.
It is only because we know less canikon product that we don't see the failures that much or their niche products. Honestly I'am not so sure most Canikon FF models did outsell a K-S1 or K-01. Model like Nikon Df or D4s appear to be a niche products to me.
07-19-2015, 04:01 AM   #3911
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QuoteOriginally posted by Liney Quote
Just looking back on when I got my first Pentax, it was from a small photographic shop (Elena Mae for the UK readers) which was on Elgin high street. Elgin for those who are not familiar with the UK is a small town on the Moray coast, about half way between Inverness and Aberdeen.

Elena Mae is gone as a company now, but they hooked me on Pentax (after they sold me a Praktika and I out grew it)




My Father bought me my first SLR for my birthday (my SP 500 (or is it an SP 1000 ) Bruce Miller's in Aberdeen.
Like Elin Mae, The camera division is also long gone, but the Camera coupled with the 50mm f2.0 lens served me for a long time an gave me many years of service.
I purchased 3 additional lenses, The 50mm I have now (took me 1 year to save up for that one), a 135mm, and a 400mm (it still gets used occasionally, though not as much as I would like).

Like many, I started with Pentax, migrated away for the beginning of digital, and returned after becoming disillusioned with canonikon, I don't particularly think it was the cameras, I think it was the users.


/Leon
07-19-2015, 07:08 AM   #3912
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QuoteOriginally posted by Nicolas06 Quote
Because this "viral" thing is theory. Ads on the internet are not especially cheap and many have ads blocker and just don't click. As for videos there a few that go viral, the others nobody remember them. It is not possible for everything to go viral by itself and cost fast less than it should because of that.
Then forget the ads. If even one video goes viral, you reach lots of people quickly and with no cost. Have the Pentax user base create free promotional videos for a Pentax contest with some nice equipment prizes. Use those videos to reach people; or, have the user base post and promote the videos.
07-19-2015, 07:39 AM   #3913
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QuoteOriginally posted by sholtzma Quote
Then forget the ads. If even one video goes viral, you reach lots of people quickly and with no cost. Have the Pentax user base create free promotional videos for a Pentax contest with some nice equipment prizes. Use those videos to reach people; or, have the user base post and promote the videos.
And how exactly are you to do that? If you are not better overall at marketing than others, there no reason you get more out of your investment in it than other, I'am affraid. And from pure observation, I'd say pentax is pretty bad at marketing to begin with, much worse than the average.
07-19-2015, 10:10 AM   #3914
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QuoteOriginally posted by Nicolas06 Quote
And how exactly are you to do that? If you are not better overall at marketing than others, there no reason you get more out of your investment in it than other, I'am affraid. And from pure observation, I'd say pentax is pretty bad at marketing to begin with, much worse than the average.
I don't understand what you are saying.

How exactly is Ricoh going to "do that"? I just offered a way, a way of marketing their products, for which they do not have to spend much, can excite their user base, and might well get some highly dramatic videos that are potential "viral videos".

If you are saying that Ricoh would never do that, because in the past you have observed that the companies that owned Pentax did not market well, you are basing the future on the past, which might not be realistic in this case. Ricoh is putting money into the Pentax brand, as we all know by now. Perhaps it is still deciding on a marketing approach and waiting until it has a fuller stable of products (APS-C, underwater, theta, full frame, Q, lenses, support, etc) before rolling out that approach.

I realize it is easy to be negative.
07-19-2015, 12:11 PM   #3915
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So as Pentaxians we need to come up with a strategy to conceptualise a series of youtube type videos that showcase stunning images and mini videos, with nothing other than "Shot with Pentax" embedded, no credits or anything else, the idea being to get get people to look at the images and say wow I want to take images like that and need to buy a Pentax.
I am convinced we have the skills to do this , and we can create brand desire that will make Rioch sit up and look.
What to you think?
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