>Some did. Some of us didn't. I for one was happy to see some monies spent >in this area. Problem with that is I think it was very inneffective.... I agree, I think the marketing of a hardware platform is generally inneffective. Same as with an OS. All you can hope for is to build name recognition and hope it will mean something if your products make it into a bid. >>installed base of older machines that want all of >today's functionality >>stuffed into a new release of their operating system so they don't have to >>buy anything new. >Kind of an unfair generalization, isn't it? The AS/400 makes IBM a bundle >of money if memory serves correctly. I have three new emodels being >installed in November myself. I didn't mean to imply that all 400 customers were as such. I was simply pointing out that IBM (as a profit making company) might find it more attractive to cater to NT buyers willing to spend cash than to CISC box owners who want upgrades implemented so they don't have to spend cash. This is not an adjudication, merely and observation. IBM and it's motivations will not change simply because I perceive this as good or bad. >I think there are many different opinions as to what advertising should be >done. I believe most people that are complaining are looking for >marketing/advertising that just increases the public recognition of the >AS/400 name and its capabilities. You called IBM and asked for a solution. >How many people don't call IBM? How many people don't consider the AS/400 >for a data warehouse, Notes server, internet server, etc. and buy something >that just got a good review in PC Magazine? When you look at the volume of >AS/400 articles and ads vs. those of Unix or NT I think there is a huge >gap. Could this in of itself affect AS/400 sales? I think it can (or I >could be wrong - but read books like Megatrends, "Influence" by Cialdini >or "Extraordinary Delusions and the Madness of Crowds" by Charles >Mackay...and you wonder). But is advertising the AS/400 advertising IBM? In a lot of ways, advertising the AS/400 is a waste of money. Name/brand recognition _is_ important. The lack of articles and lack of recognition certainly does cost sales and is of course important. The real issue, though, is whether or not a few glossy ads with pics of shiney new 400s is going to do the trick. The AS/400 suffers as a platform because it is tied to the solutions offered on it. In other words: If I buy a PC based product, I buy my solution first (the software) and then buy the hardware to go behind it. Microsoft need not care whether or not I like Compaq better than Dell. A software vendor can sell me an NT based solution and then I am required to wade through the glossy ads for hardware and determine the best solution. At this point, the AS/400 is out of the running. There is no point in IBM trying to advertise against hardware solutions here _because the AS/400 is NOT a solution for this buyer_. Instead, IBM needs to be a part of the buying cycle earlier in the game. IBM needs to be viewed as a solutions vendor. When Joe Customer wants his new corporate solution, he needs to think IBM is a possible vendor. Joe Customer, at this point, wouldn't give a rat's keester for a hardware ad at this point, because hardware doesn't solve anything. He wants to see the software solution. IBM would love for this customer to buy an AS/400 based product because that means IBM will sell the hardware now and in the future. But what if there is NO AS/400 solution? Or none that the customer wants? Should IBM send the guy packing or sell them an NT product with IBM hardware? Tell me from a stockholder point of view. >Well, for the last couple of years IBM has been doing rather well, not >spectactular but it has been improving and making money and the stock price >has been going up. This new model you speak of - hasn't IBM been taking >this approach for quite a while? I don't see it as new but as old. Well, the new model is a couple years old, but it really only got into full swing last year when IBM announced that 30% of IBM's sales were through the channel and 70% direct and that this needed to be reversed. It has been. Unfortunately, this has also led to a lot of business partners with no value add attaching themselves to long time AS/400 customers and just selling them discounted hardware. This is a problem because these customers are not seeing enhanced benefit to owning AS/400s and still see them as "green screen machines". As a result these customers do not implement AS/400 solutions to new problems (because the AS/400 partner is viewed as their IBM rep and is just sitting around hoping to collect upgrade money). IBM needs to weed these guys out better because they are hurting 400 sales. Chris Rehm Mr.AS400@ibm.net You have to ask yourself, "How often can I afford to be unexpectedly out of business?" Get an AS/400. +--- | This is the Midrange System Mailing List! | To submit a new message, send your mail to "MIDRANGE-L@midrange.com". | To unsubscribe from this list send email to MAJORDOMO@midrange.com | and specify 'unsubscribe MIDRANGE-L' in the body of your message. | Questions should be directed to the list owner/operator: firstname.lastname@example.org +---
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