Canadian device maker BlackBerry is having a hard time, that’s obvious and everyone knows it. However, in its fight to stay relevant, the company is now taking out full-page newspaper ads to convince people that BlackBerry will rise again.
The open letter, which will be placed in various newspapers in North America, is BlackBerry's way of trying to communicate directly with consumers instead of through intermediaries, according to analysts. BlackBerry’s 660-word open letter will make its way into more than 30 major newspapers in the U.S. and Canada.
The company states that it is putting out the open letter in the form of a newspaper ad to reach “valued customers, partners and fans.” BlackBerry’s letter will appear in the Washington Post, National Post, Wall Street Journal, and many others.
BlackBerry’s letter is the first move from the company to try and put actual consumers at ease after CEO Thorsten Heins made plans to put the company up for sale.
Along with making its way into national newspapers, BlackBerry’s open letter will also be sent around in the form of a press release and distributed via social media channels. BlackBerry hopes that all of these modes of distribution can work together and reach as many of its customers and partners as possible.
“These are no doubt challenging times for us and we don’t underestimate the situation or ignore the challenges,” said BlackBerry in its letter. Although the Waterloo, Ontario-based company is owning up to its struggles, it is also hopeful for what the future has in store for BlackBerry and its products.
BlackBerry truly does not know what to do, which is why Heins is trying to find a buyer to simply take over the mess that the company has become over the past few years.
Technically the smartphone company has agreed to a $4.7 billion sale but there is still quite a bit of time for things to happen. Fairfax Financial Holdings and a few other companies have stepped up to buy the company after Heins put BlackBerry up for sale. However, BlackBerry has until November 4 to find a new buyer or come up with an alternative plan of action.
Sales have been horrible for the company that used to lead the smartphone market. BlackBerry lost nearly $1 billion after it released the latest line of BB 10 smartphones. There are numerous reasons why BlackBerry was unsuccessful with its attempted reboot, but no matter what, it has simply been unable to compete against Apple, Samsung, HTC, and LG.
Analysts have frequently pointed out BlackBerry’s odd advertising decisions as potential causes of its failure. Even the decision to buy a newspaper ad for its open letter is something that most companies in 2013 would not do when they don't really have an advertising budget.
Posted: 2013-10-15 @ 11:25am PT
How to kill your company in five easy steps:
1) Fail to keep pace with relevant industry trends, or in some cases fail to even acknowledge them. Treat your employees, particularly your top engineers and most astute sales managers, as uneducated serfs with no right to have an opinion let alone express one.
2) When everything starts to go south, put on a desperate ruse that makes it seem like you're not completely out of touch. If possible, waste time and resources on an unfinished trend-driven product that meets absolutely no one's needs.
3) Instead of building on your strengths and finally addressing concerns that your most loyal fans have been expressing for years, abandon your dedicated customers and chase after a demographic you don't understand in the slightest. Retool your business to ride on the coattails of current innovators without adding any value.
4) Advertise as little as possible, and when you do make sure the message is confusing, self-contradicting and targeted at the the wrong consumers.
5) Use that money you should have spent on marketing to ineffectually placate nervous partners and investors. The customers are already gone so they're not really a concern.