View Poll Results: Is it Time for Frank Boulben to Step Down?

Voters
100. You may not vote on this poll
  • Yes

    70 70.00%
  • No

    30 30.00%
07-21-13 01:51 AM
61 123
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  1. w0lfgang's Avatar
    The advertising/marketing teams have clearly made some colossal blunders, and due to the cultural disconnect, it isn't going to improve in the US. Boulben clearly does not understand American consumers.
    CLCL, EchoTango and SMITHBAY56 like this.
    07-03-13 11:06 AM
  2. mikeycollins13's Avatar
    Guess I voted yes...
    CLCL likes this.
    07-03-13 11:22 AM
  3. the_game969's Avatar
    I voted No...at least in Canada he did a great job. I see BlackBerry advertisement everywhere and they were all over the place during F1 weekend.


    Just wish the same thing could be said about the states...
    tjseaman likes this.
    07-03-13 11:54 AM
  4. w0lfgang's Avatar
    I voted No...at least in Canada he did a great job. I see BlackBerry advertisement everywhere and they were all over the place during F1 weekend.


    Just wish the same thing could be said about the states...
    My issue is with his job here....perhaps they written us off? I'm sure they have done a decent job in Europe, Canada, UAE, SA, and some other places....in the states it is a total bomb
    07-03-13 12:10 PM
  5. njblackberry's Avatar
    I don't think he is up to the task. All the chatter at the launch hasn't turned into marketing. I accept that marketing may be better in Canada. But with a full quarter of Z10 sales coming in below expectations, something has got to change.
    07-03-13 12:14 PM
  6. elmatatan184's Avatar
    I vote Yes.

    Posted via CB10
    07-03-13 01:28 PM
  7. sentimentGX4's Avatar
    Contrary to what is said on Crackberry, I actually believe US carriers have put an excellent effort both advertising and pushing BB10... at least from my vantage point in Los Angeles.

    Radio ads on 102.7 KIIS FM, the radio station with the highest grossing ad revenue in the nation, have promoted the Z10. All three carriers (AT&T, T-Mobile, and Verizon) have specifically mentioned the Z10 by name when talking about their promotions in these radio ads. I've seen print ads on AT&T where the Z10 is the first phone in a line of smartphones when talking about a phone sale. There are ads in the mall and ads in the magazine. I've even seen a BB10 truck outside a shopping center once promoting the Z10 and handing out goodies. (I don't watch a lot of television so I don't know about that.)

    I think people are quick to try and find others to blame when things go wrong instead of admitting their own flaws. I've seen people blame bull stock analysts, bear stock analysts, marketing, the carriers, hedge fund conspirators, the media, etc. Even those willfully admitting BBRY did something wrong are making wild accusations. For example, 'Heins is responsible for my bad investment decisions!' This witch hunt is getting ridiculous.
    tjseaman likes this.
    07-03-13 01:40 PM
  8. MPLexus301's Avatar
    There are a few of us marketing folks on CB who have given our opinions on how marketing BB10 has been handled so far, and I think the general consensus is that Boulben has done a downright horrible job. If he wants to remain CMO, they need to at least hire a designated regional marketing manager - one for U.S., one for Canada, one for AsiaPac, etc - to oversee and direct efforts in that region.

    Marketing has absolutely killed the Z10 launch, IMO. Horrible job.
    DocDRM and web99 like this.
    07-03-13 01:47 PM
  9. srsBlackBird's Avatar
    Maybe. The latest big blunder was the mismanagement of the backlash from consumers and from the industry following Thorsten's announcement that they were going to stop further development for the PlayBook. Frank's job includes anticipating the markets reaction and putting some type of spin on it. What happened?

    Frank failed to take control of what could have been an opportunity to take the negative attention on PlayBook and transact that into publicity for BB10 and BB10 phones. Even though the PlayBook is not a hot item, it has a loyal following of mavens; people who will carry the torch for the brand. But you have to give those mavens something to believe in. Frank let Thorsten send the wrong message. And the message was not something BlackBerry loyalists felt they could believe in.

    The message should not have been that BlackBerry is reducing it's portfolio of devices by suspending further development for PlayBook, but that they are looking at new ways of unifying the BlackBerry experience on BB10 moving forward.

    Putting it that way at least stays consistent with the current marketing and messaging.

    Take this, the lackluster ads in the US, and the unremarkable "Keep Moving" campaign-- it's almost like BlackBerry is telling you to move on to another platform.

    #BlackBerryTorchBearer
    MattyG27 and web99 like this.
    07-03-13 02:15 PM
  10. w0lfgang's Avatar
    There are a few of us marketing folks on CB who have given our opinions on how marketing BB10 has been handled so far, and I think the general consensus is that Boulben has done a downright horrible job. If he wants to remain CMO, they need to at least hire a designated regional marketing manager - one for U.S., one for Canada, one for AsiaPac, etc - to oversee and direct efforts in that region.

    Marketing has absolutely killed the Z10 launch, IMO. Horrible job.
    that's a fantastic idea

    Posted via CB10
    07-03-13 02:28 PM
  11. Moonbase0ne's Avatar
    I can't think of anything that I've seen since the launch of the Z10 that has been all that good or has gotten poeple talking about Blackberry again. Even the Super Bowl Ad, I only heard about it from places like this site.

    There are just too many people who don't know that BB10 even exists in my neck of the woods. Even people who are still using BB, when I ask them about BB10, they don't know much, if anything about it.
    07-03-13 03:34 PM
  12. EchoTango's Avatar
    In my view, recovering the US market IS the marketing job. Frank should have come up with a tactical US marketing strategy as his first priority, assigned a US market SWOT team and gone to TH to get some serious dollars to execute. The only tactical marketing action I've seen is the firing of the US PR Agency...but not the announcement of a replacement. The only commerrcials I've seen is the weird "magic carpet" ad which certainly does not inspire anyone.

    Without cracking the US market, Blackberry will be handicapped forever with the rest of the world and will never realise the results the company has indicated it wants to achive. 2.6 milllion BB10 phone sales in Q1 speaks for itself.
    web99 likes this.
    07-03-13 04:00 PM
  13. Simon Sage's Avatar
    For all of the criticism BlackBerry's marketing has received, it's all awfully nonspecific and unconstructive. All anybody has really said is that it's not good and it's not working. How about we start talking about what specifically is bad about the advertising and why in its current form the marketing isn't translating to adoption. It seems a hell of a lot more sensible to be thinking about course changes rather than who to throw overboard. BlackBird's PlayBook mention is a good example.

    Posted via CB10
    07-03-13 04:48 PM
  14. RubberChicken76's Avatar
    There are a few of us marketing folks on CB who have given our opinions on how marketing BB10 has been handled so far, and I think the general consensus is that Boulben has done a downright horrible job.
    Perhaps you marketing gurus ought to send your proposed marketing plans and resumes to careers@blackberry.com?

    Since clearly you feel you know how to do his job better than he does ...
    07-03-13 05:45 PM
  15. RubberChicken76's Avatar
    For all of the criticism BlackBerry's marketing has received, it's all awfully nonspecific and unconstructive. All anybody has really said is that it's not good and it's not working. How about we start talking about what specifically is bad about the advertising and why in its current form the marketing isn't translating to adoption. It seems a hell of a lot more sensible to be thinking about course changes rather than who to throw overboard. BlackBird's PlayBook mention is a good example.

    Posted via CB10
    Best post I've read about this all day. And I hope it brings some real, educated discussions where people look at the marketing as a collective, global whole and weigh in.
    dusdal likes this.
    07-03-13 05:46 PM
  16. hauger's Avatar
    For all of the criticism BlackBerry's marketing has received, it's all awfully nonspecific and unconstructive. All anybody has really said is that it's not good and it's not working. How about we start talking about what specifically is bad about the advertising and why in its current form the marketing isn't translating to adoption. It seems a hell of a lot more sensible to be thinking about course changes rather than who to throw overboard. BlackBird's PlayBook mention is a good example.

    Posted via CB10
    Untrue. Some of it has been unspecific, but some have been fairly specific. As mentioned earlier, there was zero done regarding the Playbook issue, and as such was a missed opportunity. Another very common thought in these forums is quantity = quality. Seeing the Blackberry name and Z10/Q10 name on banners and whatnot does not equal decent advertising when the company is desperately trying to reverse it's image and hence it's fortunes.

    I tried to make the point with my posts on another thread (http://forums.crackberry.com/news-ru...55/index5.html), posts # 104,105,107,109 that what was required was advertising that generated an emotion that the potential consumer could link to their lifestyle/self-image and cause said consumer to seek out a BB10 phone and see what it's actually like.

    The fact of the matter remains (as an investor), 2.7 Million sold in 3 months, world wide, on a phone that's supposed to save the company, is a dismal failure and people should loose their job over it.
    MPLexus301 and web99 like this.
    07-03-13 07:07 PM
  17. w0lfgang's Avatar
    For all of the criticism BlackBerry's marketing has received, it's all awfully nonspecific and unconstructive. All anybody has really said is that it's not good and it's not working. How about we start talking about what specifically is bad about the advertising and why in its current form the marketing isn't translating to adoption. It seems a hell of a lot more sensible to be thinking about course changes rather than who to throw overboard. BlackBird's PlayBook mention is a good example.

    Posted via CB10
    False....I and innumerable others have not only criticized BUT ALSO put forth suggestions
    MarsupilamiX likes this.
    07-03-13 07:24 PM
  18. w0lfgang's Avatar
    Perhaps you marketing gurus ought to send your proposed marketing plans and resumes to careers@blackberry.com?

    Since clearly you feel you know how to do his job better than he does ...
    Yeah because Exec positions are hired from a pool of people who just submit their resumes off the street, and not from an elite "good ol' boys" club....and all the execs started at the bottom and worked their way up and it has nothing to do with family or personal connections....the world is a meritocracy.
    Say PollyAnna, got any other nuggets of wisdom from The Peoples Republic of Naive?
    Billboards, a spot on an F1 car, hiring a "creative director" who hasn't created ANYTHING but a joke by tweeting from her iPhone, and TV commercials that elicit a "WTF?" circque de soleil-esque reaction from American audiences....he's really on the edge of creativity....that sure is beyond MY skill set
    Last edited by w0lfgang; 07-03-13 at 07:36 PM.
    07-03-13 07:25 PM
  19. hauger's Avatar
    You have to accept there is something wrong with the sales numbers presented. Generally, its one of 3 issues:

    1. Product that is unable to compete. I honestly don't think this is the issue. BB10 is still green but rapidly improving. It has more than a few features that set it apart from the competition. The only point in this category is the ever-present App's issue. Even on that point, BB did great with what they had to work with and will continue to be dogged by the chicken and egg problem.

    2. Distribution Problems The one might have some merit. Was there sufficient stock available, or were sales lost due to lack of inventory. Was BB's party line supported enthusiastically by the carriers? How has the lack of consistent updates across all distributors affected sales? How can this be countered (hint: effective marketing that causes consumer demand that cannot be ignored by the distributors).

    3. Failure of Marketing: If point 1 isn't the cause and point 2 can be mitigated with decent marketing, then point 3 is likely where the failure exists. Without a doubt, BB marketing has one very large and difficult mountain to climb, but fighting against terrible public perception is why they get paid the bug bucks. Their job was to take a decent product (BB10), and drive demand in an market that doesn't really care. Again, sponsoring, putting up billboards, and running TV ads showing some dude on a magic carpet do nothing to make anyone go to a store and ask to see a Z10. One of the reasons why I like the emotion over feature advertising is it helps create an image around the product and avoids the direct comparison of "our feature vs their feature". The marketing honestly failed. They had a decent product, there was built in buzz around the launch, and it was squandered.

    The ONLY reason TH should keep his job is stability in leadership is needed right now. Changing the CEO would send the wrong signals. Replacing Frank right now might actually send the right signals to the market and generate new buzz.
    robmac81 likes this.
    07-03-13 08:00 PM
  20. hauger's Avatar
    Since clearly you feel you know how to do his job better than he does ...
    2.7 million phones shipped in 3 months worldwide is pretty convincing proof he doesn't know how to do his job. Wonder how it will look on his resume.
    07-03-13 08:08 PM
  21. Moonbase0ne's Avatar
    Perhaps you marketing gurus ought to send your proposed marketing plans and resumes to careers@blackberry.com?

    Since clearly you feel you know how to do his job better than he does ...
    I'm just here for some nice friendly discussion and debating, not to tell anyone else how to do their job.

    This is a public forums after all.
    RubberChicken76 likes this.
    07-03-13 08:57 PM
  22. MPLexus301's Avatar
    False....I and innumerable others have not only criticized BUT ALSO put forth suggestions
    Yup. Plenty of GOOD suggestions out there, they're just scattered in different forums.

    This one is great: http://forums.crackberry.com/blackbe...keting-824847/
    Last edited by MPLexus301; 07-03-13 at 09:40 PM.
    07-03-13 09:17 PM
  23. MPLexus301's Avatar
    For what it's worth, here were my thoughts from another thread:

    One glaring error I see here is an absolutely ****-poor job of marketing management in the States. Quite frankly, Frank Boulben should be replaced in short order.

    Why? Feel free to disagree with me, but the campaign that they launched the Z10 with was less than a fumble. The Super Bowl ad was horrible and showed almost nothing about what the phone can do. In fact, it literally showed you what the phone can't do. That was strike 1.

    Then, BB continues with this meaningless campaign of "Built to keep you moving." BB has gotten themselves into such a bad spot here in the U.S. that people won't even think twice about that and the imagery - numerous cuts of people walking or moving - says ZERO. A second snapshot of the hub, a second snapshot of flow, nothing of Time shift, no mention of the fastest browser, nothing. Time shift is BB's one trick marketing pony right now and they let that opportunity flop.

    The mobile handset market is clearly a "show me" group of buyers. Show me the phone. Show me technology. Show me features. Show me how it's going to feel if I choose to buy this phone and use it every day. THIS is where Blackberry wins, and it is also where Blackberry has so badly lost thus far. The story with flow, active frames, hub, blazing fast browser, etc. has been lost in favor of some meaningless imagery of people walking. I cannot believe that they dropped the ball so badly - the mistake is glaringly obvious.

    They had an opportunity to promote "An entirely new Blackberry experience, with the communication efficiency that you need, and all of the functionality and apps that you want." Then follow up with imagery of hub, flow, active frames, flick typing, Time Shift, etc. They lost all of that. What does this say to the uninformed consumer? "This is the same BB with a new tagline - 'built to keep you moving' - and the same type of 2nd rate OS that I dumped to get an iPhone or Android." The sales reflect this issue, because once people tend to get this device in hand and use it - they buy it. This whole disaster is strike 2.

    With the launch of the Q10, BB does have an opportunity to correct their errors and market the phone correctly. I have not seen any ads for the device yet, but my suspicion is that they will drop the ball just as they did with the Z10. The focus on the Q10 needs to be functionality, communication efficiency and yes - apps, camera, etc. JUST as it should have been with the Z10. The message needs to be that this phone offers the same BB communication functionality that you loved, along with an entirely new experience and the apps that you have been wanting. If they fail with this, it will be strike 3 in the U.S. Mark my words.

    Additionally, they need to be working to get 10.2 and more apps to the platform as soon as possible - this is a dire situation. People in the U.S. are returning Z10s because they buy the phone only to find that Instagram, Snap Chat, Vine, etc. are not available on the platform. Feel free to disagree with me. Say that Instagram doesn't matter. Give me the sales pitch about side loading. However, all of this is the very type of thinking that put BB into this position. Having more apps will allow for a seamless transfer experience from iOS or Android to BB10. Until then, people are going to continue to return Z10s because at this point, they just expect that every phone has these options. Social media is now a second nature to everyone - despite the outlet.

    Third, they need to consolidate everything to BB10. This is due to financials, branding, marketing and resource allocation. I am shocked that they are introducing a BB7 phone this year. Horrible idea.
    07-03-13 09:33 PM
  24. donnation's Avatar
    I think the entire organization should be gutted. Get some fresh perspective in. First if ax the Zombie Thor and move down from there.
    07-03-13 09:54 PM
  25. Chicago777Guy's Avatar
    Yes he needs to go back to France

    Posted via CB10
    07-03-13 10:36 PM
61 123

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