President Obama today jumped on the BlackBerry bashing bandwagon stating, “In the Oval Office, I always thought I was going to have really cool phones and stuff. I’m like, c’mon guys; I’m the President of the United States. Where’s the fancy buttons and stuff and the big screen comes up? It doesn’t happen.”
Earlier in the week, The New York Times wrote how Blackberry’s difficulty to be seen as edgy is actually hindering their growth.
Mike Lazaridis, one of Research In Motion’s two chief executives responded, “Why is it that people don’t appreciate our profits? Why is it that people don’t appreciate our growth? Why is it that people don’t appreciate the fact that we spent the last four years going global? Why is it that people don’t appreciate that we have 500 carriers in 170 countries with products in almost 30 languages?”
It’s amazing that even as companies are profitable and doing well, their image and brand can have subpar connotations that can ultimately affect its bottom line. With iPhones and Androids seen as the next generation of phones, the “coolness” factor of BlackBerry is clearly starting to lack, even as everyone, including Obama uses it.
I for one say the Public Relations strategy for BlackBerry needs to be examined – What can be done to show that they continue to evolve and are keeping up with the technologically savvy brands which are currently out there?
Stockholders and consumers alike don’t like to be associated with antiquated brands, so companies successful or not always have to be aware of their image and PR strategy. Just because you’re profitable does not mean it comes with great press and universal admiration. You have to work on it and it has to be ongoing.
Marketing and PR campaigns have to continue to evolve, regardless of success, and staying relevant goes hand-in-hand with staying profitable.