Sony- Digital Media Convergence

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Question of Concern

Choose a specific company and evaluate its organization’s performance in the market with reference to digital media convergence.

Explain the organization’s relationship with the different media segments and discuss how this affects the company’s operations and sales.

Company Background

What better company to select that one that possesses all forms of media, and even technology that converge all media types into a single device (multi-media devices). Sony is the world’s fifth largest media provider, standing at USD 78.88 billion in 2008. An amazing feat considering that the company had only originated as a radio manufacturer in WWII Masaru Ibuka and Akio Morita, and is now pioneering some of the most advanced technology in the world.

Sony currently has a wide selection of a product line-up (including their unique innovations), such as: * HDTVs
* Play Stations (1, 2 ,3 and portable)
* Universal Media Disks
* Blu- Ray disks
* HandyCams
* PCs and Laptop (Vaio)
* Radios
* Personal MP3 Players
* Cellular Phones (Sony Ericsson)

With such a diversification of products and different media forms, collision with one another is inevitable.

I especially selected Sony, so that I may also enlighten you on some aspects of the gaming industry, used as an advertising tool.

Case Study

Case 1
Pre-launch of the PS3 (Play Station 3) in 2005, Sony had hired special graffiti artists (and the walls of store owners) to spray-paint buildings of hired establishments, eliciting people playing the PS3. They also done the same by hiring artists to draw similar art and upload onto their blogs and peer networking sites (MySpace, Friendster, etcetera), hoping that the power of art and peers would inspire the want for the users to purchase their upcoming product.

The success of this unique form of guerilla tactics were questionable, since this sparked much controversy. Many viewers realized that this was a marketing tactic and expressed their distaste to the graffiti that they even placed their own additions (Such as “Advertising directed at your counter culture” or “Fony”). And on the web format, although slightly more subtle, many caught on and also wrote their repulse in the comment boxes and forums.

Case 2

Approaching Christmas in 2006, Sony attempted an online viral marketing campaign; it was named, “All I want for Xmas is a PSP”, a blog written by a teenager named “Charlie”, confessing his ultimate desire to acquire the upcoming Play Station Portable (PSP). “He” even provided links to iron-on t-shirts, Christmas Cards and “himself” rapping, all associated to the PSP.

It wasn’t long until this ruse was discovered by the public as well, leading a massive exposure of the project through YouTube and blogs. Sony admitted the sites origin and then converted the sight, providing details and facts on the PSP.

Case 3
After a user purchases the Play Station 3, there is a feature wherein you can create your own avatar and immerse yourself into a digital community as the character. Able to select your own facial features, hair, clothing and trinkets; coincidentally many of the trinkets you may select are existing and up-coming Sony products. Wouldn’t be uncommon to see a character walking around with the Sony HandyCam or a house forum containing Sony’s HDTV.

A very successful advertising tool, considering that many PS3 users are also their current market for many of their other products. This helped spread awareness amongst its users, and it even provided some details of the products in-game to educate them on their functions and advantages. Not to mention, this was a cheap and easy way to advertise.

Case 4
In a lot of Sony PlayStation games, especially ones that are focused on sports. One would encounter advertisements of other products (and including Sony’s own), during the half-times and breaks. It helps create the feel...
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