Micromax, let’s face it, never really had a compelling phone. And you by now know how Micromax works. The Taiwanese makers come up with a design which is 60% complete, Micromax comes up with some enhancements and voila we have a brand new phone. For Micromax, the real work only starts after a phone is manufactured and shipment is sent to Micromax’s warehouses. The phone isn’t necessarily great but Micromax really want that phone to be great, somehow. How does Micromax do that?
Building great ads vs building great products
There is always a tussle between building great ads and building great products. You can have a great product and have a really crappy ad, which will hurt. You can have a crappy product and a great ad, which will benefit in the short-term but hurt in the long-term. You can have an average or a different product, spend great monies on advertisement and come up with some really impressive numbers. Micromax belongs to the last category. It is willing to spend monies on average products to make them look great – on TV at least.
Micromax has never really ventured into the expensive side of the phone spectrum. All its phones are concentrated in less than 10K range with dual SIM as their core feature. It might be having a little over 50 different phone models but there isn’t really a stand out phone. You know like a Nokia 1100 or the Moto Razr. And Micromax isn’t trying to bring a product like that. How is Micromax standing out?
Micromax’s standing out by building great ads, not great products.
Micromax’s ad history is littered with surprises, twisted tales and outrageous gimmicks. Without digging too deep, let’s look at its two most recent ads. Let’s start with Micromax Convertible. The key selling feature of the phone is the back cover which comes in three different colors. And the best use case Micromax can think of is a girl having three different boyfriends – one color per boyfriend. If it isn’t for any other ad, this wouldn’t stick and no body would even be considering the phone. It’s the ad and not the phone which is getting Micromax Covertible going. Samsung has introduced different back color concept at least an year earlier. I cannot recall if Samsung even has an ad for it.
The next ad is for Micromax M2. This ad isn’t sleazy. This ad goes to the vivacious side of the spectrum with colorful characters and great locales. The phone Micromax is trying to sell is a music phone whose design is anything but original. It is inspired by iPod Nano. If M2 was presented to Steve Jobs he would just rip-off all the keys on it. Someone who is highly opinionated would call Micromax M2 a iPod Nano rip-off. Irrespective of whose opinion we are taking, we can safely say that Micromax M2 isn’t the greatest of phones but people will be inclined to buy it because of its ad. We have seen music phones before and M2 isn’t really refreshing.
By now you get the drift. Micromax Bling – An ornament/style statement. Micromax PSYCH – An MTV phone. Micromax Gamolution – Gaming phone. None of these are great products but they do have great ads. Micromax which will be hitting the markets with a public issue will mop up some public money. I am sure that money will be put to good use.
What do you think of Micromax’s strategy?