There was an interesting take recently on the Apple v Samsung wars, in which accuse the other of violating their intellectual property particularly with regard to mobile or cell phones. Apple had a really big win on home ground in California, being awarded over $1 billion.
It is an interesting suggestion that if the Samsung products are really very similar to Apple’s in consumers’ minds, perhaps prospective purchasers might consider the much less expensive Samsung offerings. After all, if they are gadgets which do the same thing they would be better value for money. Of course Apple wants some Samsung products taken off the market, but maybe the seeds might have been sown in the minds of some consumers?
Apple fans will not be convinced. It is the other market, mainly Android and those who look at functionality first who may be swayed. No one should underestimate Apple’s clever closed marketing, and the fact they have a fan-base so well managed.
The whole issue takes me back to when I was a very young lad keen on photography. The new much-desired 35mm camera when I was starting out was the Pentax Spotmatic SP 1000, a Single Lens Reflex (SLR) camera. It had through-the-lens light-metering and the advantage over compact cameras was that you saw through the view-finder exactly the photo you would be taking, courtesy of the mirror which flipped out of the way when you pressed the shutter button. That was really something back then.
In the early seventies I couldn’t afford a Pentax Spotmatic and made do with my Mum’s old camera, with which I had some good results.
Some years later I had enough money to buy an SLR second-hand. The camera I chose was a Yashica TL-Electro. It was cheaper than a second-hand Spotmatic, but actually it is a very good copy with only minor differences to the metering and design. Yashica had taken an excellent camera made by a competitor and made one quite like it. In my opinion it was as good as the Spotmatic, and used the same “Pentax Screw” system of interchangeable lenses.
I still use my TL-Electro today with excellent results, and yes, there is still a second-hand market in suitable lenses. Over the years I have acquired several.
Our unique services
These days we cannot copy a product without getting into serious trouble. Large companies will threaten even if they do not have much of a case, because they have the financial clout. Yet excellent service can be reproduced by anyone. There is no copyright on services, add-ons, making our customers and clients as comfortable as they can be, and making sure we are better than the rest. That means paying attention to other people’s offerings and keeping up with our industry standards and expectations.
Many of us in business are in the same market as very large companies and corporations. Offering the very best service as good as or better than they can will bring customer loyalty, and the additional personal attention will bring us referrals. We can all do it as well or better than the others, and get our noses in front.
We can out-do the others if we make the effort and offer great value and comfort in doing so. After all, as customers ourselves, we know we can’t beat that nice warm feeling, can we?