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Tuesday, September 28, 2004

Samsung and Sony's Brand Experience Plazas

This is just beautiful. The great giants of electronic stuff dazzle their customers. Sadly, not (yet?) in Asia.

Samsung has set up its Brand Plaza earlier this year - we reported. It is 10,000 square-feet large and, amazingly, doesn't intend to sell, but basically wants to showcast its products - current and future products. "Many of the hundreds of products on display—including a fascinating lineup of video- and photo-enabled cell phones—aren't available today in the United States. Other unavailable products were also on display, including a revamped 50-inch DLP (digital light processing) projector, notebook computers and a high-tech refrigerator and dryer."

However, to entice future customers it allows them to rent the products: "By simply plunking down a credit card, visitors can borrow a camera for a few days to record their New York experiences. Samsung also offers kiosks where, after they return the cameras, visitors can burn videos onto DVD to take home.

The store also offers MP3 downloads via the Napster service, and free ring-tone downloads to cell phones."

This is pure free price culture and contrast the competitive attempts of Sony. The company, in its 1,000 square-feet Qalia showroom, the company exhibits its "ultra-high end components, easy-to-use interfaces and super-inflated prices. For this it has hired a staff of luxury goods experts to provide personal demonstrations of the luxury digital products to well-heeled customers."

It shows how differently the two giants market their products. While consumers get used to Samsung products, visitors to Sony's showroom may feel the awe. If they will buy it at a later is the question - but if you need specialised salespeople to sell it, you might capture the high-end market, but not the "normal" consumer.