PS4 and B2B marketing: what are the similarities?

Collaboration – November 15, 2013


November 15th is a special day for gamers in North America. After seven years of waiting, the PlayStation 4 arrives at Best Buy and Target stores to replace the PlayStation 3. Marketing efforts are colossal for selling this Sony marvel, and according to rumors, there has been talk of a 100 million dollar budget. Contrary to what one might think, the success (or fail) of this Sony machine does not only effect gamers, it also touches upon B2B!

The promises are numerous for players around the world: enhanced gaming experience, stunning graphics (take a minute to admire them on mashable), a new joystick providing surgical precision control, etc. But for consumers to be seduced by this little technological marvel, they will require, what else…. games!

These games are created by developers, some being Ubisoft Montreal, Electronic Arts, Square Enix

But first, let’s go back a little.

The success of its competition

In 2005, Microsoft launched its home console, Xbox360. A year later, Sony responded with the launch of the PS3. If the product was well received by the public, developers were not unanimous. Programming on the PS3 was complicated and frustrating! Sony had made it too different a machine, and moreover, too complex. This delayed the release of some games on the console… I personally had to wait nearly six months longer for a game, while my friends, who owned an Xbox360, were already playing them.

Lessons learned

Lesson no.1: Don’t put technology barriers between you and your customers (B2B). Is your product revolutionary? Yes? Super! But keep in mind that “too new” for your clients can be scary! People are afraid of what is too new because this involves a change in their way of doing things.

Sony said having learned from past mistakes, the PS4 promises to be easy for developers.

Lesson no.2: Plan a budget for the launch of your product. Be aware that it is not uncommon that the marketing budget exceeds the R & D budget:

Samsung spends more on marketing than on R & D. In 2011, the Korean company would spend 11.6 billion dollars on marketing vs. 10.3 billion on R & d. (source:)

Trop souvent, des clients viennent nous voir, ils ont dépensé tout leur budget dans la R&D et il ne reste plus rien pour le marketing. Vous partez avec deux prises dans un monde où le taux d’échec des nouveaux produits dépasse le 70 %. Bonne chance!

Too often, clients come to us after having spent their entire budget on R & D and have nothing left for marketing efforts. Doing this will put you in a bad situation seeing as we live in a world where new product failure rates exceed 70%. Good luck with that!

To conclude, here’s a reminder of the main failure causes for new products:

  1. Underestimation/perception distorts competition (43.2%)
  2. Overestimation of demand (35.9%)
  3. Over priced (34.7%)
  4. Technical problems (33%)

Look at these causes of failure. If 75% is attributable to marketing activities, then are you going to buy this famous game console for the holidays? I must say, I’m already attracted!

You can also read David Chabot’s blog on the subject of commercial research in the process of a product launch.

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