Open Letter to Pentax USA -- Pricing & Marketing Stink

Started Apr 20, 2012 | Discussions
RetLaEnvEmp Forum Member • Posts: 92
Open Letter to Pentax USA -- Pricing & Marketing Stink

Ned - you screwed up royal in your new pricing policy for Pentax in the United States. The roles in our relationship are very simple -- Pentax makes cameras and lenses; retailers of some form (camera stores or on-line mail order) sell them; and we customers buy them. You can spin the "buzz words" around all you want, add the alphabet soup (MSRP et al ...) and put in all the layers and reasons for changes but simply put your company, Pentax, doubled the prices that we pay.

I don't care about your marketing problems (they are YOUR problems); I don't care that retail brick and mortar local will not carry your Pentax products (your Pentax company screwed up and again it is your problem and not my creation). The local retail store that I have bought my three (3) Pentax cameras from does not have a Pentax camera in stock and did not have a Pentax lens in stock when I bought my K-5 last year. Why? Your problem again. The local camera stores are going out of business and business is changing. Again, this is not my problem. Who is going to sell your products and why the hell do we customers have to pay double the price through the nose for products that are 5 to 10 years old in design and production is my beef.

Your "marketing channel" is being fixed. Fix it with YOUR money not MY money.

Pentax K-5
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Unexpresivecanvas Senior Member • Posts: 1,158
Re: Open Letter to Pentax USA -- Pricing & Marketing Stink

Well said +1

Boris
Boris Veteran Member • Posts: 9,257
Re: Open Letter to Pentax USA -- Pricing & Marketing Stink

Hey Ned

In case the Pentax brain trust haven't noticed... we are still in a recession!.....best of luck with your pricing rip off.
Boris
--

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moving_comfort
moving_comfort Veteran Member • Posts: 8,242
Re: Open Letter to Pentax USA -- Pricing & Marketing Stink

You lost me at "You screwed up royal".
--
Here are a few of my favorite things...
---> http://www.flickr.com/photos/95095968@N00/sets/72157626171532197/

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Lucky Sky Senior Member • Posts: 1,795
Re: Open Letter to Pentax USA -- Pricing & Marketing Stink

A well written letter. Ned might even find it eloquent. But he only listens to market share, revenue gains/losses, P&L statements and all the other stuff that management has to watch.

Pentax will only listen to the marketplace for input and advice. Other than that, you're talking to deaf ears, and your open letter will be read by blind eyes.
--
Lucky Sky
I'd rather be lucky than good

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Michael de Ruijter Contributing Member • Posts: 840
Re: Open Letter to Pentax USA -- Pricing & Marketing Stink

I believe the message is good, but the delivery needs tweaking.
.
.
.
+1

moving_comfort wrote:

You lost me at "You screwed up royal".

-Mike

binsara Regular Member • Posts: 170
Re: Open Letter to Pentax USA -- Pricing & Marketing Stink

This open letter may fall on deaf ears but I'd bet it gonna receive numerous posts in the days ahead. You just cannot ignore the consumers when they count most.

LFLee Contributing Member • Posts: 610
Re: Open Letter to Pentax USA -- Pricing & Marketing Stink

+1.

Camera stores are going away, is a trend, no one can stop it. Online store is the trend. Why Pentax try to reverse?

Lee

exdeejjjaaaa
exdeejjjaaaa Veteran Member • Posts: 8,263
Re: Open Letter to Pentax USA -- Pricing & Marketing Stink

RetLaEnvEmp wrote:

I don't care ... I don't care ... it is your problem ... Your problem .... not my problem

it's the economy, stupid... so unfortunately it is your problem and you have to care = move to another system or organize a boycott... the only way to make it his problem is to hit him w/ $$$.

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CtrlAltDel_ru Junior Member • Posts: 33
Re: Open Letter to Pentax USA -- Pricing & Marketing Stink

I bought Pentax gear last 5 years (2 cameras, 1 flash and 7 lenses) because only one reason: Pentax has worse AF comparing N/C/S but it is cheaper. I wish to be new comer without brand dependance

citrontokyo Contributing Member • Posts: 812
Re: Open Letter to Pentax USA -- Pricing & Marketing Stink

It's a fake out , to pretend to appease those who complain about availability, while they try to carve out their niche as an "upscale/pro-oriented" maker. Selling your pro-grade lenses at fire-sale prices is not good for brand image, if your aim is indeed to present yourself as upscale.

To be honest, while I may not enjoy paying higher prices or being lied to, I do understand the rational behind the move. If you want your pro equipment to be taken seriously, you have to price them accordingly, or so the theory goes.

Pentax is trying to change their image, and grab some dough. It's a company responsible to shareholders. Does anyone here honestly think they would get a better shake buying Nikon or Canon? I'm sure there are many p-oed people here, but you can't honestly expect to get real quality from a company in the red who gives their stuff away on the internet. That's just treading water. The status quo obviously isn't working.

I know, I know, I just read what I wrote, and I sound like Ned in disguise. But the users here are a mixed group. While some are demanding FF mirrorless cameras, others are satisfied buying only old kmount lenses, or the occasional new one on sale. Between those two poles, there is no magical accounting method to make up the difference, unless you're Olympus.

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nikola123 Regular Member • Posts: 256
Re: Open Letter to Pentax USA -- Pricing & Marketing Stink

citrontokyo wrote:

... Between those two poles, there is no magical accounting method to make up the difference, unless you're Olympus.

Good one!
--
Nikola

Brentliris Veteran Member • Posts: 4,150
I see that many threads on this issue as spam

I'm seeing the many threads on this issue as developing into a type of spam.. Not many of them bring new points up. so why bother?

Like a treadmill going round and round. Make your points in one of the better formulated OP threads like Russel Evans recent one, his points elegantly wrtten not the whole truth either but it encourages dialog. Open threats and profanity like the OP in this thread means you lose credibilty. Losing the focus of this site turning it into rant against a price increase site.

This is actually forbidden according to the spirit and the rules of DPreview..

Make a anti price increase site. See how long that takes to get Very tired...

Brent

-- hide signature --

Reflections, understandings, discoveries and intimations..

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Alex Sarbu Forum Pro • Posts: 11,808
Re: Open Letter to Pentax USA -- Pricing & Marketing Stink

LFLee wrote:

+1.

Camera stores are going away, is a trend, no one can stop it. Online store is the trend. Why Pentax try to reverse?

Strange. Before Pentax announced UPP, not being present in camera stores was quite a big deal... this changed overnight, it seems.

Alex

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intro Regular Member • Posts: 133
Re: Open Letter to Pentax USA -- Pricing & Marketing Stink

It is very simple to answer Ned in his terms. Don't buy the overpriced products. And if you do so, maybe the next Ned will have better ideas.

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awaldram
awaldram Forum Pro • Posts: 13,271
Re: Open Letter to Pentax USA -- Pricing & Marketing Stink

Alex Sarbu wrote:

LFLee wrote:

+1.

Camera stores are going away, is a trend, no one can stop it. Online store is the trend. Why Pentax try to reverse?

Strange. Before Pentax announced UPP, not being present in camera stores was quite a big deal... this changed overnight, it seems.

I wonder what the reaction would be if Pentax announced their pulling out of the US market place ?

Because that's the logical conclusion of there previous pricing policy you can only sustain fire sale prices for so long, unless sales suddenly pick up you end up bust.

Alex

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Russell Evans Forum Pro • Posts: 12,617
Re: Open Letter to Pentax USA -- Pricing & Marketing Stink

citrontokyo wrote:

It's a fake out , to pretend to appease those who complain about availability, while they try to carve out their niche as an "upscale/pro-oriented" maker.

The more I think about Ned's post, the more it think its audience was meant to be the retailers, not the consumers. The retailers probably watch these forums more than Pentax, so they are probably more concerned about the reaction as they don't want to get stuck with a bunch of inventory that doesn't move. Ned is just offering the retailers a rational to stick with the program.

At it's core the post offers the consumer nothing, but the retailer everything and the threat that Pentax is working with other vendors. It's all aimed at the retailers. Look at the post proceeding it that prompted the post we are talking about. It was about relationships with the retailers and the hubris on the forums. He hears their plight, not your or mine.

So the rational to the retailers is Pentax doesn't make anymore money with the new prices, more dealers carry the brand, and everyone gets hooked on the margins. The thing that isn't said is that next year Pentax keeps the end prices stable, but raises the cost the retailers pay and so on until Pentax is making a pretty fair share. Just need to have to get the consumer to accept it to keep the wheels moving and that will take time, but they will get over it, or not, as we a marketing to a new crowd anyway.

Why doesn't Pentax not just increase the cost to the retailers from the get go? Well, the few retailers Pentax has now probably don't sell enough to make it worth their while to keep selling Pentax products at less margin, so Pentax has to lure the current retailers in with easier money. Pentax then has time to try to sell the wonderful margins to the new retailers to get more retailers to carry the brand and lessen the grip the current retailers have to keep Pentax from taking more of the profit. Really even if Pentax doesn't get new retailers, they transitioned the old retailers into a position where Pentax can take more of the cut sooner or later.

Pentax knows how much money the retailers were making with the old system and knows what the new system is generating, so as long as they don't push the margins for the retailer below the old levels, Pentax USA as a distributor makes money. Remember Pentax USA has to cover support and sales distribution, so there will be a graph that shows support cost to units sold, and where the drop off point is on how small the organization can go with RIFs. As long as Pentax USA sells enough units to stay above that point, they have room to try to increase their revenue. Yes Virginia, it is all about making money after all.

With the increase in prices, the more fluff driven cameras, Pentax transitions from the old market base of old guys with budgets, to old guys without budgets, and young hipsters with cash to spend. It's the movie model, sell to the 18-25 crowd with most of your product aimed at that market, and throw in some premium goods to pick up the older crowd with money to spend. There is no place in that model for the value the forums are crying about.

The market has moved on to people with more money to spend in the short term. It's a good market if you can ride the trends, but sooner or later a bet goes wrong and you find yourself in the trough, and them finally in front of the next wave and pushed under. I guess it is good to be owned by Ricoh then.

Thank you
Russell

waynes Contributing Member • Posts: 917
Re: Open Letter to Pentax USA -- Pricing & Marketing Stink

Do not know. But it's not impossible. Life would go on. People would buy them from Asia, or change to another brand. People in Pentax USA would work for someone else.

Brand wise, US is very if not the most conservative (just an observation, not sure the reason). Many good Japanese, Chinese and even European brand products are not in the US market, but they are everywhere in the world. The good English indoor shoes are not seen in US. The whole line of Li Ning sports goods are not seen. Butterfly is not the only Japanese table tennis product makers in Japan, but it dominates US market (and so they are very expensive as well). Haier is not the best Chinese appliance and TV maker, may not even be the best maker in China......

(Soccer is not popular here. Baseball is the number 1)

awaldram wrote:

I wonder what the reaction would be if Pentax announced their pulling out of the US market place ?

http://1x.com/artist/awaldram/wall

waxwaine
waxwaine Contributing Member • Posts: 997
Coordination problems

Pentax could be right or wrong. Many brand have that policy, like Panasonic. But I guess the problem is that, while they increase prices we don´t see new, or simply more, equipment on stores. So now we continue buyingiuyy blindness and with more expensive price. For example Panasonic, as Samsung, Sony, etc, in my country have a Stores/Show Room where you can try all their new products, and then buy any where you want. It´s a bad coordinated plan, but maybe( I hope) not a bad one.

waynes Contributing Member • Posts: 917
Re: Coordination problems

Pentax has 2 year warranty elsewhere, but 1 year in US. Does not seem to be confident here.

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