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New York Giants star to promote PSP in new campaign

Michael Strahan from the New York Giants will star in a brand new "Dude, get your own" PSP ad. Yes, the officially-titled "Annoying Guy" will also be featured in the promo. The TV spot will run from now until December and will air on shows such as NFL on FOX and CBS, Conan O'Brien, Saturday Night Live, Family Guy, South Park, SportsCenter, Adult Swim and more.

"Using Michael Strahan in the title spot helps us convey the message that PSP is one of the most aspirational entertainment devices out there," said Peter Dille, senior vice president, marketing and PLAYSTATION(R)Network, SCEA. "We know that celebrities and athletes are on the road a lot and travel with their PSPs. Michael and a number of his teammates are big fans of PSP so it was a natural tie-in to include him in the campaign."

"I love playing my PSP and getting to work with these guys for the advertising campaign has been a lot of fun," said Strahan. "With my busy travel schedule during the season, the new PSP is a perfect companion for long road trips and allows me to play against my teammates in online matches when we are together or even across the country."

[Via press release]

Sony starts extensive PSP campaign on adult swim

Cartoon Network's adult swim website is being plastered with ads for the new PSP. Good thing -- the adult swim demographic is exactly what Sony needs to target to keep PSP momentum strong. Check out Bertrum's Almanack, which provides some "fun facts" to listeners. Unfortunately, the site says that "Bertrum's Almanack not available on PSP system." But, games like NBA 08 and Syphon Filter: Logan's Shadow are. Hopefully, this campaign is one of many Sony's planning to promote their handheld.

Dude, Get Your Own campaign expands to television

Sony has unveiled more details on its ambitious "Dude, Get Your Own" advertising campaign for PSP. The promotion will focus on PSP's ability to play games and multimedia and should proudly showcase PSP's new, lower price. According to Sony, a television commercial will be airing now through the end of May on a variety of shows targeted specifically to teens. PSP fans will want to tune in to shows such as King of the Hill (FOX), South Park (Comedy Central), Adult Swim (Cartoon Network), the NBA Playoffs (TNT), Saturday Night Live (NBC), and WWE Smackdown (CW) to catch the new ads.

Online ads can also be found on,, and Additionally, Sony plans to send promotional materials through direct mail. Later this week, Sony will be launching a new "Dude, Get Your Own" website, which will go into further detail about PSP's capabilities. (Hopefully, they'll create a new educational video, unlike the one featured here.)

This aggressive stance from Sony is certainly appreciated. There are too many myths about our handheld that must be dispelled: hopefully, this advertising campaign will make others experience the system and join the PSP Fanboy ranks.

Sony tells teens: "Dude, get your own PSP"

Is the "love at first sight" ad a part of Sony's new marketing campaign? We're not sure, as Sony hasn't responded to our e-mails yet. As reported earlier, we do know that Sony's finally changing their approach in targeting the teen segment. Thankfully, this means we won't see a repeat of the "All I Want for Xmas" debacle. John Koller told GameLife: "That campaign clearly did not work." It was an attempt to "identify ways of speaking and marketing to that 13-17 year-old consumer. It was an effort to be able to target that individual in a more quiet manner and not go out and promote it and have it be something that was found. The way it was done is not correct ... In the future, we'll be more clear and transparent to the consumer."

Their new slogan will be "Dude, get your own PSP." They will try to focus on the portability of the system--a draw that appeals very strongly to the teen crowd. "The teens that are doing this value the ability to utilize the portability," Koller explains. "I can play it upstairs while my parents are watching the TV downstairs."

Free use of T-Mobile Hotspots was just the first step in capturing the teen market. PSP's firmware will be regularly updated with unnamed features that will specifically cater to the teen market. Something related to PSP's porn functionality, maybe?

[Via Joystiq]

Analyst talks price drop, Gran Turismo

Analysts, for some reason or another, are important to the industry. Colin Sebastian of Lazard Capital Markets commented on Sony's recent price drop of the machine, saying it will give the platform an important "shot in the arm." As the first official price cut since the product's launch more than two years ago, marketing will be crucial. Thankfully, according to Sebastian, Sony has a plan: "Sony is planning to support the pricing move with a new print and online marketing campaign targeted at young adults and teens." Let's hope it's better than what we've seen so far.

Price is one of the sole detriments to PSP's performance. With a lower price, Sebastian notes, the system should sell much better: "We note that a Wal-Mart promotion on Black Friday last year generated significant sales volume for the PSP at a discounted price of $169, providing one indication of potential consumer demand. We also believe the potential release of Gran Turismo for the PSP in 2007 could further boost unit sales." Wait? Did he mention Gran Turismo? Isn't that game canceled? Or maybe it's not. Let's hope that he knows something we don't.

The battle's far from over, the analyst reminds us. "It is too early to conclude whether Sony's pricing action will cause game developers to increase the pipeline of new PSP titles." Certainly, the price drop is encouraging, but "at the new $169 price, we note that the PSP is still $40 higher than Nintendo's DS."

[Via GameDaily]

Sony's flog the best of 2006

The Consumerist is running a poll, chronicling the worst of the worst fake blogs (flogs) to hit the web this year. Among the contestants are Walmart, McDonald's, and of course... Sony's PSP. The "All I Want for Xmas" fiasco caused even more bad publicity for Sony, painting them as desperate for PSP sales. Hopefully, 2007 will see a change in marketing tactics: one that doesn't involve the use of a middle-aged man pretending to speak like the kids.

As of writing, the PSP flog is leading the pack with 74% of the vote.

Learning from Sony's viral blog mistake

"From this point forward, we will just stick to making cool products, and use this site to give you nothing but the facts on the PSP."

These were the last words of Sony's viral-blog-gone-bad. The site is now suspiciously empty, showing how empty that apology/promise really was. Advertising Age did an interesting write-up on the whole ordeal, making note that the FTC is now taking steps to ensure that companies disclose the true nature of any viral communications they produce. The article has four things to learn from Sony's mistakes, and I found the following to be most important: "The consumer is smarter than you think, alternative marketing tactics must be genuine, authentic and in today's world, transparent." As Penny Arcade smartly noted, "The reality is that no agency can create viral marketing, this is the sole domain of the consumer."

Sony has to stop thinking we're idiots, and start treating us as educated consumers that know what we want. The homebrew community is a testament to that statement. Sony: listen to the gamers, read some PSP Fanboy and Joystiq, and figure out what we want.

[Via AdJab]

Fake blog admits it was "too funky fresh"

It looks like the now-infamous Sony blog, "all i want for christmas is a psp," is going to keep it real. Shockingly, the blog writer "isn't a real hip-hop maven." The apology states that the blog will now be used to give "nothing but the facts" on the PSP, but we're sorry, Sony. No way you're going to compete with us!

All I want from Sony is better advertising

The Internet is filled with tons of awful, awful things. And the people of Something Awful make their living looking for the Internet's worst. They discovered a Sony-owned and operated blog called "all i want for xmas is a psp." While many PSP enthusiasts will agree with an idea like that, the blog is clearly corporate. Watch this video, found on the site, which features a suspiciously old looking white "teen" that performs a video so bad, it's not even funny. Do you think this kind of advertising would work... on anybody?

[Via Joystiq]

Sony follows Nintendo's steps and starts targeting moms

The Wii has been a huge hit at my house over Thanksgiving. Even my mom loved Wii Sports, and is thinking about buying a system for herself. Absolutely mind-boggling. Sony is eager to capitalize on the burgeoning gaming mom market, and has expanded their newly revitalized advertising campaign to less traditional media sources. A quick visit to (pictured above) will reveal ads for the PSP with a tagline "Sugarplums aren't the only things dancing in their heads." Whatever that means. This campaign will also run on and AOL's Parenting channel.

The new campaign is "fairly unique for us," said John Koller, senior marketing manager. Sony plans on going for a more organic advertising approach, avoiding the very teen-oriented animation that defined the PSP's first year and a half. Finally!

[Via Ad Week]

Sony marketing asks you to "Find Me"

I've been looking for days to find a direct-feed version of Sony's new commercial, entitled "Find Me." Unfortunately, I couldn't. "Find Me" is part of Sony's newly revamped PSP marketing plan. It tells the touching story of a man who must find a girl through a Memory Stick loaded with clues in photo and video form. A hard-to-get girl that plays with a PSP must be worth the effort of running around the city. The ad can be seen on shows like Family Guy, The Daily Show, and Sports Center.

"The PSP system has already been established as a popular gaming handheld, but it was designed to do so much more -- from playing music and videos to sharing photos and accessing the Internet," said Peter Dille, senior vice president of marketing, SCEA. "These marketing initiatives deliver the broader PSP brand message and offer PSP owners the entertainment experience they're thirsting for from a content perspective."

[Via GameDaily]

Sony to get a marketing makeover

It's pretty obvious that Sony and its image in the public realm has depreciated over the past few months. They're ridiculed time and time again by many writers on the internet (Joystiq included), using old internet memes about giant enemy crabs and real time weapon switching. Behind the humor, there are some real concerns that they need to address:

With their stocks taking a huge plunge, many are wondering if there is a future for Sony, and if it's learning from its mistakes. Well, Sony's eating some humble pie as of late, even admitting to the weakening quality of their products. They're taking another step for the better: they're getting a new ad agency. According to, Sony is finally re-examining their brand, and will try to completely makeover their corporate identity. With the all-important PlayStation 3 about to launch, Sony better get their act together... fast.

[Via CVG]

SCEA announces new communications director

SCEA announces new communications directorIt's been widely speculated that the resignation of Molly Smith, SCEA senior director of communications and brand development, in June was due to Sony's horrid showing at E3.

What ever the case may be, Sony has appointed her replacement, Dave Karraker, former public relations chief for brands including Stolichnaya, Maker's Mark, Kahlua, Beefeater, and Courvoisier.

According to Gamasutra, Karraker will report directly to Peter Dille, senior vice president of marketing and will manage the SCEA's communications team responsible for PlayStation products in the North America, including the original PS one, PlayStation 2, PSP and all first-party PlayStation software.

"Dave has the ideal blend of videogame, large consumer brand and retail experience to help us meet our goals with the PlayStation brand," said Peter Dille, Senior Vice President of Marketing, Sony Computer Entertainment America. "SCEA's communications team will play a key role in the successful launch of the PlayStation 3, focusing on driving not only consumer demand, but also retailer excitement and synergies across the Sony family of companies."

We'll see Mr. Dille, we'll see.

(Via Gamasutra)

Ad critic: But I can't control my love for you!

Joystiq has a regular series called "Ad critic," in which you, the reader, can critique the ads released by sometimes foolish publishers.

Sony's notorious for one marketing blunder after another. I wasn't a big fan of their previous ad campaign, featuring some racially insensitive squirrels. Sony's new series of ads for the Greatest Hits lineup doesn't seem to fair much better, though. It features the same immaturity of Sony's other ad campaigns, and I'd much rather have the system be promoted with a sleek, sexy look. If Sony wants to exclusively market towards stoned college kids, maybe they can just get the Dell guy to promote their line: Dude, you're getting a Sony.

What do you think, readers? Voice your opinion about Sony's latest ad!

Interview with Peter Dille [Update 1 - Now with Medal of Honor]

Tech File has an interesting, but not too revealing, interview with Peter Dille, senior vice present of marketing at SCEA. Surprisingly, it's about the PSP (and not the impending PS3). Dille tactfully answered the hardballed questions. On the state of UMD movies, it appears that Sony's not giving up yet. He says: "We are committed to helping the studios better understand our product and our consumer, and will continue to educate them as we evolve and enhance the functionality of the PSP." Apparently, it's the studios' fault for not understanding what consumers want. I'd have to agree: Hitch, anyone? (note: Hitch was released by Columbia, owned by Sony Pictures.)

When asked about third party support and getting original games for the PSP, Dille had this to say: "Smart third parties also recognize the great success achieved with games tailored from the ground up for the PSP." Yes, smart publishers understand that we don't want ports. Hopefully, the industry is getting smarter. Finally, on why the DS is getting all the love these days, Dille had this to say: "One key finding in our market research is that many consumers don't understand everything the PSP can do. So starting this summer, we're embarking on a major marketing campaign to educate consumers about the multi-functionality of the PSP beyond gaming." I know that I'm intrigued by what this marketing campaign is going to look like, so stay tuned.

Feel free to read more of Dille's wise words here.

[Update 1: Those of you that have better reading skills than I do have noticed that Dille announced a PSP version of Medal of Honor. For some reason, I just assumed that we already were getting one.]

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