The Bar Has Been Raised

Canon and Sony both managed to perform multiple-presentation launches for their latest mirrorless cameras this month using a lot of Zoom-type interaction coupled with canned video. Nikon? They managed a press release (which wasn't sent to their press list).

My highlighted comments:

  • Canon managed to show a lot more excitement in their presentations and interactions than Sony. Canon also did a better job integrating their Explorers of Light, though Sony did okay with some Ambassadors.
  • Sony managed to give us a really good and exhaustive Q&A, and those Q's came from people watching the presentation, not pre-canned ones.
  • And let us not forget recent Apple's Developer Conference, which moved so fast and furious and threw out so much information it felt like you were sucking on a fire hose. They should have warned us that we needed to bulk up on caffeine before tuning in.

By comparison, it appears that Nikon marketing has mostly given up. Even the original and big (expensive) Z6/Z7 launch two years ago didn't manage to do the things very well that I list in the bullets, above. The D780, D6, and Z5 launches all have fallen really flat, and have gotten worse each time. Frankly, my MBA program student group could have done a better job if given the challenge of any of those Nikon launches as a one-week project. It's time Nikon management admits to themselves that much of their problem lately isn't their engineering, but what happens afterward. Moreover, that they're simply not interacting at all with customers, let alone responding to them. 

I've been watching lots of Web-only product launches, presentations, seminars, and yes, even conventions closely for the past few months. I'm trying to help one of my pro friends figure out how to create Web-based "workshops." There are clearly things that work, things that don't work, and plenty of gotchas you have to watch out for.

The three requirements of all-Web launches and presentations seem simple and well-established now: (1) generate excitement; (2) provide information; (3) enable interaction. If you're not doing all three, and doing them all really well, you're not going to clear the bar any more. 

Nikon's got more Z announcements in the works for this year. At least four significant products I know of. If Nikon hasn't been paying attention to what others are managing to do with their product launches, despite being constricted by the pandemic, then Nikon is just not going to generate the sales they desire. 

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