Tablet PC Talk – Marketing

I’ve been corresponding with Mike Moore, a GBM reader and Tablet PC enthusiast, for quite a while. I had the pleasure of meeting Mike at our GBM Reader Meetup. He flew in from Pennsylvania just for the meetup – wow!He’s a fascinating guy to talk to about tablet pcs, marketing, challenges in the market, and has some great ideas on how to shake some things up. The following is an article Mike submitted to us about Tablet PCs, marketing, and finding a way to get tablets in the hands of prospective customers.

– Mike Moore

There are a few topics one is sure to hear when Tablet PC enthusiasts meet, virtually or actually in person.*  How to boost the popularity of Tablet PCs is one of those topics.  That is why there is cautious optimism following the recent announcement by Circuit City of plans to develop a number of ““super stores” that will, of all things, demo Tablets

We all know the ““chicken and egg” scenario.  Stores don’t stock and display them because there is not a large demand.  There never will be a large demand as long as you can’t find one … that works … in a store … with someone who can show it off.

And that is the way I discovered the world of pen computing a number of years ago.

I knew about Palm Pilots.  Who didn’t?  They were everywhere!  But I also knew they wouldn’t do the things I wanted a mobile device to do.  And then it happened.  I saw something called a ““Pocket PC” advertised (at a large electronics store, I don’t remember which one).  Not only did the store have them on display and in stock, there was someone knowledgeable who could tell me all about.  A fellow with a fulltime job with Microsoft down in Chicago came up to Madison, Wisconsin on the weekend to promote and demo the Pocket PC.  I quickly became the proud owner of a Toshiba e335.  Unfortunately, when the larger and more powerful e800 came out it was not to be found- I learned about it after it was no longer being marketed in the US.

Imagine, Tablet PCs in a store, more than one brand, more than one model (with pens even), and someone showing them off. 

There are three other ways I can think of to successfully promote Tablet PCs; one is the brainchild of John Hill at Allegiance, get a demo into the hands of the interested party by sending it to them; the second way, (though I don’t suggest it) would be to put in a killer sound system with an ““air guitar” app., along with some of the greatest games ever devised, only on the Tablet platform; and the third way … I’m not telling :-)

*Anyone who went to the GBM Roundup last month knows that “actually in person” is a more enjoyable way to meet.