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Discussion Starter · #41 ·

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I disagree. To me both the Moto 360 and the LG G Watch R look better with their round conventional case. They actually look like real watches, as opposed to a wrist mounted iPod.

Edit: The Moto 360 is very large however. Also, note that the LG does have a crown, so Apple wasn't exactly first out with this idea.

I had the LG G Watch, now the moto 360. Doc is correct, this tech has zero impact. I personally use the SmartWatch as a tool like my cell. Depending on the type of day I may need whichever to navigate or communicate to someone on the road.

I still intend to wear watches and preorder Lew & Huey stuffs. Sorry doc you can't get rid of me that easily lol.

Here's my moto 360 today. Having fun with faces. Doc, does the band look familiar? ?



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Not getting into the discussion at all, just replying to the initial question: I don't know. I only have old ones myself. ;-)
 

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If I were in charge of watch releases, every single model would get:

-A launch video on YouTube walking people through the case, movement, dial and any other value props
-A press release
-A corporate blog post with pictures, walkthrough, video, etc.
-Addition to my webpage with full specs, part numbers, high-res stock photography
-A new product review program (NPRP) cycle with media review samples and a target press list protected by an embargo date
-A comprehensive Q&A to answer potential questions about the product
-A twitter/facebook promotional campaign with a dedicated community manager to answer questions and provide support
-At least some sort of contest to build brand loyalty
-Flagship models would get a ballsy, high-profile stunt to attract attention of non-traditional watch press
-A press presentation to walk press through the product, with NDA press briefings by phone to educate reviewers on the product before their samples arrive


Essentially, I would craft a comprehensive go-to-market strategy for every single watch to ensure that enthusiasts obtain the media and answers they're demanding. The modern watchmaker's approach to media relations is just embarrassing; the fact that I can't find professional reviews or corp. walkthroughts for all sorts of popular watches speaks volumes for how behind the times the watch industry really is.
 

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Discussion Starter · #45 ·
If I were in charge of watch releases, every single model would get:

-A launch video on YouTube walking people through the case, movement, dial and any other value props
-A press release
-A corporate blog post with pictures, walkthrough, video, etc.
-Addition to my webpage with full specs, part numbers, high-res stock photography
-A new product review program (NPRP) cycle with media review samples and a target press list protected by an embargo date
-A comprehensive Q&A to answer potential questions about the product
-A twitter/facebook promotional campaign with a dedicated community manager to answer questions and provide support
-At least some sort of contest to build brand loyalty
-Flagship models would get a ballsy, high-profile stunt to attract attention of non-traditional watch press
-A press presentation to walk press through the product, with NDA press briefings by phone to educate reviewers on the product before their samples arrive

Essentially, I would craft a comprehensive go-to-market strategy for every single watch to ensure that enthusiasts obtain the media and answers they're demanding. The modern watchmaker's approach to media relations is just embarrassing; the fact that I can't find professional reviews or corp. walkthroughts for all sorts of popular watches speaks volumes for how behind the times the watch industry really is.
Hah!

You would so fire me.

Maybe doing EVERYTHING above is a little overkill (or at least impractical for EVERY model), but in general I like the cut of your jib. I wish I had the scratch to hire a professional of your calibre.

Using my mobile; please pardon the brevity of my reply, and any typos.
 

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Hah!

You would so fire me.

Maybe doing EVERYTHING above is a little overkill (or at least impractical for EVERY model), but in general I like the cut of your jib. I wish I had the scratch to hire a professional of your calibre.

Using my mobile; please pardon the brevity of my reply, and any typos.
You can't be CEO, COO and Director of PR! The executive team of any company should be insulated from the media and/or scutiny by a layer of PR/marketing empowered with the ability to: answer tough questions and make the decisions that they feel are right to defend the company from itself and/or promote the virtues/values of the company. Execs should be used sparingly to provide an extra level of prestige on a product, communication or activity.
 

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I only see a dozen or so new watches a year since I've started browsing these hollowed threads. Let's be honest, there are a lot of retreads in design going on. Look at some of the popular brands in the affordable range, Steinhart, Seiko, Orient, even micros like Armida and Maranez. They might release one new design model for every 5 or 6 homages. The ones that tend to stick more with brand original designs like Orient are doing re-releases of their own classic designs. Then, there are the edgier Microbrands...the kickstarter types. They are making the new watches.

Even higher priced brands are in the same boat. How many versions of the planet ocean are here now? Speedmaster? What classic Tudor is Tudor going to make a modern release for next?

I'm not complaining. I wear my homages like they're going out of style (which, of course, we know they never will).
 

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Discussion Starter · #48 ·
You can't be CEO, COO and Director of PR! The executive team of any company should be insulated from the media and/or scutiny by a layer of PR/marketing empowered with the ability to: answer tough questions and make the decisions that they feel are right to defend the company from itself and/or promote the virtues/values of the company. Execs should be used sparingly to provide an extra level of prestige on a product, communication or activity.
Ouch. It may be partially due to the alcohol I had earlier, but you're making my head hurt. I can't even tell if you're joking or not.

I'm sooooo not good at PR, but I know enough about "biz-niss" to be dangerous. I'm just astonished at how disjointed some of these companies seem when it comes to their overall new model release strategy.

Whenever I see stuff like this - "stuff" meaning industries where a lot of people seem to not know their a$$ from their elbow - I always tend to think that there's a business to be made from the situation, either by "doing it better" than the competition, or doing it for them, whatever the "it" happens to be.

In trying to answer the "why" of all this, the most reasonable conclusion I can draw is that when a company like Seiko makes a model that people here might be drawn to, i.e. an affordable automatic, they must not make that many of them, and they must figure that they'll sell fast enough, even if "fast enough" is a few years, so why bother investing in promotion, as opposed to their higher end or lower end models, where the investment in production is much higher, so making the further investment in promotion makes sense.

Or I could just be shtoopid.
 

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In trying to answer the "why" of all this, the most reasonable conclusion I can draw is that when a company like Seiko makes a model that people here might be drawn to, i.e. an affordable automatic, they must not make that many of them, and they must figure that they'll sell fast enough, even if "fast enough" is a few years, so why bother investing in promotion, as opposed to their higher end or lower end models, where the investment in production is much higher, so making the further investment in promotion makes sense.
That makes a lot of sense to me. Maybe "affordable automatics" is too small of a market to be worth spending money on promotion for a company like Seiko.

For many, many years I thought that since the quartz revolution that the only mechanical watches still being made were high end Swiss watches. I did not think there even was an affordable mechanical watch market any longer. I thought I could never get something like my first automatic (Seiko, in 1972) again. Doomed to quartz.

Then a few years ago I needed a new everyday watch, decided to check the internet, and here I am now, stuck with many more watches than I could possibly ever need.
 

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Perhaps when it comes to WUS-approved affordable brands, making new watches at a more frequent rate simply isn't profitable. We are a niche. I can't say how it is on other countries, but I've noticed that in the US the majority of watch wearers gravitate into two distinct segments: those who are only interested in an affordable fashion watch, and those who want a high end watch from an instantly recognizable brand. WUS-approved affordables rarely coincide with these two categories, so they don't make much of a dent in customer purchases. I think this explains the vast amount of advertising put into high end brand watches as well as low end fashion watches. Most of the Seikos and Citizens I've seen in the real world have been inexpensive quartz models, leading me to believe that even the consumer segment buying the majority of Seikos and Citizens and the like aren't as WUS-inclined as the rest of us and essentially buy models they can find in a department store or mall boutique watch display. If the WUS community is one of the main consumers of mid-range watches (lets say maybe $200-$1000), large brands probably don't profit from new models as much as fashion brands and high-end brands do.

To add to all of this, the amount of watches out presently is absolutely astounding. I've been active on this forum for about 2 years, and I'm still discovering new watches that have been out for years.
 
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I contest the argument of an ROI that's "too small."

The cost of a press release, stock photography, a professionally recorded/edited launch video and a blog is about $10-15K. Seems like a lot, until you realize that you only have to sell 100 units to break even for a $150 watch. That's chicken scratch for a big player like Seiko. Christ, there must be 500 SKX divers on this forum alone--maybe more? And a media review program is a scalable activity, costing only as much as your FOB price * units + shipping to reviewers.

I really can't stomach the notion that there's no ROI for a bigger player investing in budget models. In fact, judging by what I know in my own career experience promoting premium luxury goods: the big ticket items cast the "halo" of quality and prestige, but you don't sell that many. You make those premium models to give consumers a good feeling about your craftsmanship and attention to detail, and they assume it must extend to all levels of your stack.

Meanwhile, it's the entry-level and mainstream models that are volume movers that drive revenue and gross margin, even if that GM/unit is small it adds up fast. That's where you want to invest your money, because that's where most of your money will come from.
 

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I'm surprised that this hasn't been mentioned yet in this thread (and if it has, forgive me for repeating). Have you guys seen member shellerik's excellent Seiko 5 database? SEIKO 5 Finder - Searchable Seiko 5 Catalog. (see https://www.watchuseek.com/f21/1-000-seiko-5s-1081653.html)

If a hobbyist working in his spare time can come up with this useful catalogue in a few months, imagine what a corporation that has a business interest can do with its resources. Not to mention whereas shellerik had to hunt down information about each watch, the manufacturer should have all the information readily available.

Watch companies must not prioritize publicizing their model lines. Perhaps all their marketing is focused on building brand awareness (rather than model awareness)..
 

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Discussion Starter · #53 ·
I contest the argument of an ROI that's "too small."

The cost of a press release, stock photography, a professionally recorded/edited launch video and a blog is about $10-15K. Seems like a lot, until you realize that you only have to sell 100 units to break even for a $150 watch. That's chicken scratch for a big player like Seiko. Christ, there must be 500 SKX divers on this forum alone--maybe more? And a media review program is a scalable activity, costing only as much as your FOB price * units + shipping to reviewers.

I really can't stomach the notion that there's no ROI for a bigger player investing in budget models. In fact, judging by what I know in my own career experience promoting premium luxury goods: the big ticket items cast the "halo" of quality and prestige, but you don't sell that many. You make those premium models to give consumers a good feeling about your craftsmanship and attention to detail, and they assume it must extend to all levels of your stack.

Meanwhile, it's the entry-level and mainstream models that are volume movers that drive revenue and gross margin, even if that GM/unit is small it adds up fast. That's where you want to invest your money, because that's where most of your money will come from.
I'll play your game you rogue...

Let's say you're right (read: "I think you're right")...but the big brands *ARE* ignoring this segment of the market (affordable/mechanical), or at least, they're not paying much attention to it when it comes to promotion.

Why?

If the answer isn't a too small ROI, or an ROI that's perceived to be too small, even erroneously, then what IS the answer?

How do you explain it, or what's your theory about why the big brands don't seem to give much of a crap about promoting their new models? Hell, they don't even seem to be working that hard to promote ANY of their affordable/mechanical models, or very many of their best quartz models. Why are we only hearing/seeing about new models when someone stumbles over them by accident?
 

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Discussion Starter · #54 ·
I'm surprised that this hasn't been mentioned yet in this thread (and if it has, forgive me for repeating). Have you guys seen member shellerik's excellent Seiko 5 database? SEIKO 5 Finder - Searchable Seiko 5 Catalog. (see https://www.watchuseek.com/f21/1-000-seiko-5s-1081653.html)

If a hobbyist working in his spare time can come up with this useful catalogue in a few months, imagine what a corporation that has a business interest can do with its resources. Not to mention whereas shellerik had to hunt down information about each watch, the manufacturer should have all the information readily available.

Watch companies must not prioritize publicizing their model lines. Perhaps all their marketing is focused on building brand awareness (rather than model awareness)..
I just saw that for the first time in another thread tonight. It's better than nothing, and better than what Seiko's doing, for that matter.
 

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I'll play your game you rogue...

Let's say you're right (read: "I think you're right")...but the big brands *ARE* ignoring this segment of the market (affordable/mechanical), or at least, they're not paying much attention to it when it comes to promotion.

Why?

If the answer isn't a too small ROI, or an ROI that's perceived to be too small, even erroneously, then what IS the answer?

How do you explain it, or what's your theory about why the big brands don't seem to give much of a crap about promoting their new models? Hell, they don't even seem to be working that hard to promote ANY of their affordable/mechanical models, or very many of their best quartz models. Why are we only hearing/seeing about new models when someone stumbles over them by accident?
In the business of brand marketing, I'd consider Seiko a "cult brand," which is a brand that's cultivated sufficient user loyalty and momentum as to obviate the need for product-as-hero advertising, or indeed any advertising at all. Consider Google, Facebook, Starbucks and similar: these brands do not spend any money on traditional advertising because the "customers" do all the advertising that's required. Intel long ago exited the business of doing product-specific advertising, because they've reached such ubiquity through partners and in the retail channel that minimal lifestyle marketing and the jingle are all that's needed to keep momentum going.

This passage is particularly salient:

They encourage personal freedom, which sets them apart from other brands on the market, while most companies provide customers with a product; cult brands encourage shoppers to customize their products.
This is immediately recognizable in the large modding community that surrounds Seiko products, which certainly could have been engineered or lawyered out of existence some time ago.

And as a result, Seiko can act rather lazily in the market with regards to marketing and advertising because their enthusiastic customers will do all the work for them a la Seiko 5 finder.

//EDIT: The next step up from Cult Brand is "lifestyle brand," where the brand becomes synonymous with or identifiable as the banner for a culture. This is the elite level that every brand dreams of. Apple, Quicksilvr, Harley, Lululemоn and Nike are all examples of a lifestyle brand. Advertising often returns at this phase of brand development in the guise of aspirational marketing, designed to make outsiders feel like they're missing something greatly important that the "insiders" have. Through this the culture grows and self-perpetuates, and permits the brand to diversify into new markets that will be followed and supported by the culture.

Rolex is a good example of a lifestyle brand in the watch business. Despite many brands having greater technical prowess at lesser prices, Rolex is still the banner for a certain posh lifestyle. Everyone who's made it big and knows nothing about watches wants to bring home a Rolex.
 
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