Sina Technology Zhang Jun
“I will return to the mountain to build my dream machine to meet the 15th anniversary of Meizu. ”
When Meizu founder Huang Zhang wrote these words on the Meizu Forum on February 11, 2017, all Meizu fans cheered and said, “Huang Zong is ready to buy your flagship machine.” The fans are excited to leave a message.
However, after one year's waiting, Huang Zhang once again appeared in the forum, saying "due to the time, 15 is only a small test chopper I returned to the Meizu after many years, and the subsequent launch of the 16 series is my full build product. The 16 series will be launched just around August. ”
The Meizu 15, very narrow borders, returning small circles, and Luoyun patterns on the antenna, which were released on April 22, have a distinct Huang style imprint. However, in the case of full-screen, under-screen fingerprints and other new technologies are in full swing, paying tribute to the classic Meizu 15 has not brought too much desire for change to discerning users.
Meizu 15 is more like a product, it is at least re-announced on the product, the chief designer of Meizu mobile phone Huang Zhang is back. However, in the fiercely competitive Chinese smartphone market, after the failure of Pro 7 and the test of Meizu 15, what time was left for Meizu?
"The greater the hope, the greater the disappointment" ”
After Huang Zhang claimed that Meizu 15 was only a small chopper, many fans commented that "the greater the hope, the greater the disappointment."
In fact, after Huang Zhang declared that Meishan 15 had to recreate the dream machine, the expectation of the outside world for this product was always high. The Meizu is also pulling the heights of this product for the yellow chapter and Meizu itself.
"Huang always does a product. If it isn't fierce, then you think about what he'd done before. Does M8 and M6 mean? Therefore, we have enough confidence in Huang Zong’s products. I believe that offensiveness will be sufficient. "" Li Lan, president of Charm Blue had previously said in an interview with Sina Technology.
However, after the Meizu 15 release, apparently Meizu fans are not satisfied.
A self-proclaimed "old man who has no brain powder in his age" posted a message in the Meizu forum. "The old yellow marketing tricks, honest, can still be crazy age, still very much admire the Now, I don’t want to say anything but I’m not going to break it. In short, Huang is the biggest reliance of Meizu, and it is also the biggest obstacle for Meizu. Stop using old Huang to make a gimmick and remember the successes of j.wong ten years ago. Summarize the successful experience. . For the old Charm, the whole mobile phone that made the old Charity straight up, like the whole m8. Leadership trend is not the responsibility of Meizu, but at least it is necessary to follow the trend, is the reason for the charmer to continue to buy Meizu mobile phone. ”
The recurrence of Meizu's propaganda and marketing rhythm on Meizu 15 has indeed brought a big negative reputation to this product. Yang Wei, the senior vice president of Meizu, also admitted in an interview after the conference that Meizu 15 is really just a product of Huang Zhangxiao’s chopper, and “General Manager Huang has left the company’s management operations for some time, and he has to perceive himself after returning.” Whether the market's context can be accurately grasped or not, can the concept be accepted by consumers? There are also a lot of old charm friends who have lost a lot and replaced them with young ones. Whether these people buy such design books is not a simple matter. ”
Urgently defined brand and product positioning
After the Meizu brand and the Charm Blue brand were split in May 2017, Meizu internally defined the positioning of the two brands: Meizu brand is more focused on the high-end market, facing the business, government, corporate, high-end, and elite groups; while the Charm Blue brand is Young people market, assume the task of sales.
Although the positioning and segmentation of the two brands have been done well, in fact, the Meizu brand's externally-created brand image is obviously not yet successful. At the same time, the business attributes of the products are not enough.
According to the Flyme user report released by Meizu at the end of last year, Flyme cumulative users exceeded 6,000 units. From the overall age distribution, 15-22 years old accounted for 31%, 23-35 years old accounted for 59%, and 36-45 and 46 years old and above. The proportion is only 4%; geographic distribution, second-tier cities accounted for 35%, third-tier cities accounted for 24%, four-tier cities accounted for 26%, while the first-tier cities accounted for only 13%.
This means that Flyme users can also roughly assume that among Meizu mobile phone users, young users between the ages of 15-35 in the second, third and fourth tier cities occupy the majority.
This poses a challenge to the image of the high-end business that the Meizu brand is eager to build. On the one hand, only 8% of Meizu users themselves meet this age group. Most Meizu users are not impressed by Meizu’s addition of Buddha marketing and business brand image elements on Pro 7 and Meizu 15. This was revealed when Yang Wei posted a publicity poster on Weibo to warm up the Meizu 15. The existing Meizu users did not like and recognize Huang Zhang and Yang Hao as the only brand idea that Meizu has set.
On the other hand, Pro 7 and Meizu 15 do not reflect sufficient business elements in their product attributes. Yang Hao emphasized the purchase of hundreds of kilograms of pure gold material for the back shell coloring, costing millions to Samsung. Customizing new-size display screens, global tactile feedback systems, etc., does not constitute a necessary factor to impress business people, not to mention competition from users such as Huawei and Samsung.
Confusion of product lines and pricing strategies
"Detective Blue is the true flagship" is the user of the Meizu flagship product in some configurations rather than a charm blue product of a ridicule. Unfortunately, this ridicule happened on the Meizu 15 again.
There are three products in the Meizu 15 series. The M15 uses the Snapdragon 626 processor with 4GB of memory and 64GB of storage, priced at 1,699 yuan. 15 The Snapdragon 660 processor with 4GB+64GB of storage is sold at a price of 2,499 yuan. 15 Plus uses the Samsung Exynos 8895 platform, which is stored at 6GB+128GB and starts at $2999.
Overall, the three products are well separated in terms of configuration and price, but compared with Charm Blue's recently released Charm Blue E3, it will be awkward.
Charm Blue E3 uses the Snapdragon 636 processor, with 6GB+64GB storage, priced at 1,799 yuan. Although the Charm Blue E3 has a gap with the M15 and 15 in camera performance, it has an advantage in basic memory combinations. This will undoubtedly make the Meizu brand and the charm blue brand product line appear conflict and confusion in the user's choice.
Meizu’s flagship product, Pro 7, is also facing this situation.
Although it has a distinctive screen design, it is equipped with MediaTek's P25 and Xeon X30 processors, priced at 2880 yuan and 3580 yuan. Caused the product did not receive outside approval, the price of a short period of time to dip a thousand dollars, and even was exposed finally had to cut a single situation.
Although the Meizu 15 uses a Qualcomm processor, the 660+4GB+64GB price of $2,499 also raises controversy. Compared with other brands of the same price, the competitiveness is limited.
Internal management crisis
Before Meizu 15 was released, Zhang Jia, director of Meizu’s former creative department, bombarded Yang Wei, senior vice president of Meizu, and had already attracted the attention of netizens and media.
According to Zhang Jia's description, after Yang Hao entered the service in May 2017, he had proposed three programs of Meizu Cultural Asset Value Added Program, Meizu Finance Business Development Concept, and Flyme Cultural Asset Value-Added Plan, but they all failed. At present, most of the pengo technology personnel created by Meizu’s own content marketing platform have been lost.
In fact, this is just a microcosm of Meizu's organizational transformation under the leadership and instruction of Huang Zhang.
After 3 months of return of Huang Zhang, Meizu performed a major organizational restructuring. Huang Zhang served as Chairman and CEO of Meizu and formed three new business divisions, namely, Meizu Business Unit, Charm Blue Business Unit, and Flyme Business Unit. Huang Zhang personally managed the Meizu Business Division. Yang Hao was the senior vice president and chief staff officer responsible for the marketing of the Meizu brand; and Li Lan was responsible for the Charm Blue brand.
In September last year, Pan Yikuan, the vice president of the Meizu Business Unit responsible for sales work, left the company within four months; several months later, the vice president of sales of the Meizu Business Unit and most of the employees in the sales team he led announced the departure.
In December 2017, Huang Zhang once again adjusted the Meizu structure and set up a new overseas division, e-commerce division, and accessories division. He promoted CFO Qi Weimin to senior vice president of the company, which is equal to that of president Bai Yongxiang. He intends to increase revenue and reduce expenditure to ensure profitability. Further expand overseas markets and expand sales volume.
In addition to structural adjustments, Meizu has been eliminated 10% for the third consecutive year. This has contributed to Meizu’s continued profitability since 2016.
It is not so much that Meizu is struggling with internal struggles. Rather, it is the rebalancing of power under Huang Zhang’s will. Just as Li Nan, who was supposed to lead Charm Blue to independence, was finally required by Huang Zhang to cooperate with the Meizu Business Unit and the Accessories Division on the channel, and Huang Zhang also took back the product definition and design authority of Charm Blue; at the Meizu 15 conference Yang Hao also replaced the combination of Bai Yongxiang and Li Nan.
In an interview after the Meizu 15 conference, Yang Hao also talked about the recent Zhang Jia incident. He believes that this situation is the precursor to the Meizu people's long-term accumulation of changes. "The law has always been difficult to change since ancient times, and it has been easy to see a change." "He also said that with the deepening of the reform, there will be more organizational structure adjustments happen later." This event further explains that Meizu has reached a point where it cannot be changed. ”
After the Zhang Jia incident, Huang Zhang immediately communicated with Yang Lan, saying that "in any case, to firmly move toward the correct brand strategy, a company should not be brutally attacked by cyber or even organized networks. In order to coerce the threat, we must firmly follow our own path. ”
Conclusion: After Meizu 15, can you save Meizu?
After experiencing the winter of 2017 smart phones, Chinese manufacturers once again felt the embarrassment of the winter in the first quarter of 2018. According to the "China Mobile Phone Market Analysis Report for March 2018" published recently by the China Institute of Information and Communication Technology under the Ministry of Industry and Information Technology, China's smartphone shipments totaled 81.87 million in January-March 2018, a year-on-year drop of 27.0%.
Under the influence of internal and external troubles, Meizu really did have to change. Has always been only concerned about the product, and even that a good product is the only way to solve the problem of the yellow chapter, after the return also drastic changes in the brand, marketing, products, channels, etc. Meizu.
However, as the two return of Huang Zhang in 2014 and 2017, how can relying on spiritual leaders go out to solve the problem again under such fierce competition and rapid changes in the smart phone industry? For Meizu, the hope of rebirth is completely betting on Huang Zhang who has been isolated from the outside world for a long time. I am afraid that there must be expectations for success and preparations for acceptance of failure.
After the Meizu 15 that changed from a dream machine to a small-scale chopper, the 16 series that Huang Zhang claimed to be making full efforts will be available in August this year. If Meizu 16 does not meet expectations in the future, where should the Meizu go?