Sony’s Alpha enters phase two

By Matthew Henry in Brisbane

BRISBANE: With a swelling line-up of digital SLR cameras, Sony is about to turn up the promotional volume on its Alpha range.

The new campaign, “See More, Say More”, has been launched to retailers this month through a series of trade events and will reach consumers in May.

Originally launching just one DSLR when it entered the market in 2006 with the Alpha A100, Sony’s offering has now grown to three models, and will add another by the end of the year.

Along with the expanded range has come an expanded retailer network – part of the reason Sony is currently hosting dealer events, like the one in Brisbane’s Fortitude Valley last night.

“We have been a bit isolated in our approach to DSLR mainly because we had a limited lineup until recently. But DSLRs have a broader appeal to consumers now and at the same time we have broadened our retail presence,” said Sony Australia senior product manager, Kieran Gallagher.

Sony held similar dealer events in Sydney last Wednesday and in Melbourne two weeks prior.

Gallagher said the new promo tagline, “See More, Say More”, encourages users to get creative with their camera by becoming aware of photographic opportunities in their surrounding environment.

Speaking to Current.com.au at last night’s dealer event, which hosted mainly young sales staff, Gallagher said Sony is on the cusp of a concerted push to drive awareness of the Alpha brand.

But first, the company is introducing its new retailers, including JB Hi Fi and Wow Sight & Sound, to the products.

“Some of these guys may not have even held a DSLR before tonight,” said Gallagher, commenting on the room abuzz with sales staff snapping images of the live performances, which included a pair of fire-breathing bartenders, a hoola hoop specialist and a contortionist.

“We’re confident that the menu systems and layout are ideal for novice users. We’re very proud of the technology we have employed to make them easy to use.”

The DSLR category has been the fastest growing segment of the digital camera market in the past few years, driven largely by new users who are replacing compacts with high-quality shooters.

With its Alpha products designed to appeal to this consumer, Sony’s aim is to become the number three player, behind Nikon and Canon.

“Those two brands have got a big headstart, but we see ourselves being very competitive against brands like Olympus and Pentax,” he said.

“But it’s not about trying to steal someone else’s market share, we think there is an opportunity for us to grow the market.”

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