Loose Marbles?

There’s an article over here that complains about AMD’s marketing.

The article basically says that AMD doesn’t effectively publicize its products. We talked about this just the other day, so we won’t repeat ourselves.

The article then argues that a good part of the reason why AMD doesn’t do well is that they don’t do enough for the media, namely:

  • Provide more information
  • Provide more samples

    With all due respect, we don’t think at all that AMD sales would sprout if they would only pay closer attention to the media. It seems to me enthusiasts and hobbyists are plenty aware of AMD; it’s everyone else that’s the problem.

    We would agree that AMD does a poor job of providing information to the public and/or media compared to Intel. Of course they are far too secretive and controlling, but one shouldn’t take this personally; if AMD refuses to answer questions from leading stock analysts in their conference calls, do you think they really care what a little website might think of them?

    We’ve long argued that the main reason for that is that they have had many failings to be secretive about. However, we cannot pretend that armies of potential buyers get apoplectic, or even notice, when AMD is less than forthcoming about many things.

    This secretiveness probably hurts sales to more farsighted enthusiasts somewhat, though the number of those is probably not an especially big chunk of the enthusiast audience, and likely tiny in the overall CPU market. This is why AMD can get away with this, not too many care.

    Is the answer to that more free samples to more places? Uhhhh, no. As we mentioned above, it’s hardly like AMD is this big unknown among those enthusiasts who peruse the Internet for information. For instance, I have never gotten (or asked for) a free processor from either AMD or Intel, but it would be legal proof of insanity to claim that the Overclockers.com audience is thus unaware of their products. Thinking people visit just one site is like thinking people just breathe in one spot.

    Yes, restricting samples to a limited number of places does allow AMD to put undue (if unspoken) pressure on reviewers to find things right about their product, but that problem is universal. All the hardware people play that game as much or even worse at times.

    If I were in AMD’s shoes, and somehow couldn’t care less what anybody said about my company’s product, I wouldn’t distribute to a lot of little websites, either. If I were in AMD’s shoes, and instead was so evil that I demanded to write the website reviews myself, I still wouldn’t distribute to hundreds of websites, simply because I wouldn’t get extra sales.

    If major corporations decline to advertise on your public access cable channel program, or give you lots of coupons for free Big Macs, does that mean there’s something seriously wrong with them. Stripped to the bare essentials, this article seems to be saying, “AMD must be crazy for not sending me stuff,” if not, “Where’s my stuff??”

    Well, there may well be some loose marbles rolling around here, but I don’t think they’re AMD’s. 🙂

    Does anyone really need hundreds of website reviews to make up his or her mind? If Joe Sixpack or Suit doesn’t read one web review, how is having hundreds going to influence him in the least.

    Sorry, but this puddle is covered. If AMD were going to give out plenty of samples, they ought to go to those places where the people who don’t go to our puddle visit.


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