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Summary:

Not more than one hour ago, we were chatting on the podcast about the lack of marketing for Palm’s Pre. The show will be up later today, but ironically I just received a “Meet the Palm Pre” e-mail from Sprint, likely because I signed up to […]

palm-preNot more than one hour ago, we were chatting on the podcast about the lack of marketing for Palm’s Pre. The show will be up later today, but ironically I just received a “Meet the Palm Pre” e-mail from Sprint, likely because I signed up to get notifications on Pre developments. Looks like the viral, buzz-style marketing is in play here. Here’s the note (emphasis mine):

“Exclusive to Sprint, the phone that lets you truly live in the now. Keep multiple applications open and move seamlessly between them while they’re live – email, maps, photos, websites and so much more. Hype the Palm Pre! Facebook it, Tweet it, whatever. Share your excitement with your friends!”

This is followed by a “Foward to a friend” link. I think it’s great that Sprint is using social media to hype the new phone, but we’re not yet at the point where that can be the only effective method. I’ve seen the Pre in the “Now Network” campaign that’s currently running on television, but the phone isn’t mentioned by name at all. And the only reason I got to “Meet the Palm Pre” via e-mail is because I knew enough to sign up for such notifications back in January. Most mainstream users don’t know that.

As was pointed out in the “Motley Fool: Palm Pre DOA” post yesterday, outside of the tech world, most folks don’t yet know about the Pre. If the phone is expected to have a whale of a launch sometime in the next 8-10 weeks, there needs to be some heavy-duty marketing involved.

  1. I got the same email, and yes the buzz is growing, starting with Jimmy Fallon, and many many engadget posts.

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  2. I’m curious: how much mainstream marketing did the iPhone get before its release? I don’t remember seeing any… In fact, I remember seeing my first TV ad for the iPhone last night, which I found interesting given the buzz around the Pre and its imminent (30 days or so, I’m guessing) release.

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  3. i think the main problem with it is the fact that its on Sprint.

    most people i know loathe their service and customer service

    give me a gsm unlocked version and then i’ll start adding some hype. again, hates the usa and how phones are handled.

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  4. I disagree – Sprint’s made significant improvements in both service and customer service over the years. They’re consistently ranked highest in 3G speeds, as well as in service performance. And I’ve found their customer service to be just about the same as with any other large company–even better, really.

    I know that even with my horrible Windows Mobile phone (well, “horrible” might be a bit strong, but I certainly don’t like it much), I never drop calls and rarely if ever lack for decent Internet speeds. I hear of far more issues with my friends and coworkers using their iPhones on AT&T.

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  5. I’ve seen an ad from Sprint featuring the Pre, but it wasn’t necessarily for the Pre. Looks like Sprint’s just dipping their toes in the water.

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  6. Spamming people to spam others isn’t a social media outreach strategy. :p I disagree with Mark on Sprint improving customer service. In my experiences it’s just as bad as ever. Whereas AT&T premiere treats me like a VIP and know their products/services. Too bad my coverage/speeds aren’t universally good on that network.

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  7. Dave – Not sure why you mention spamming… I’m pretty certain that everyone who received their emails had specifically asked for them. And if it’s spam to comment, blog, or tweet about a topic, well then, welcome to the world of spammers.

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  8. More advertising from Sprint, and while not specifically for the Palm Pre, its not insignificant.

    http://www.gearlog.com/2009/04/palm_pre_coming_soon_sprint_ro.php#more

    All carriers have their problems. If you’re happy with the price/service you receive and the device you use, then there’s no reason to look elsewhere. I’ve personally had a lot of problems with both my iPhone and AT&T, so I look forward to switching to Sprint, which has great coverage in my area. The Pre looks to be an exciting device.

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