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INTERVIEW: Patrick Lagana from Sony on the Aussie Vita launch

INTERVIEW: Patrick Lagana from Sony on the Aussie Vita launch

The Playstation Vita dominated press and retail in Australia when it launched in this territory two weeks ago.

MCV took the opportunity to speak with Patrick Lagana, Marketing Manager for Sony Computer Entertainment Australia, about how the launch went.

What was unique about the Australian execution of the Vita marketing campaign? What territory specific challenges are there which brought about these differences from Sony’s approach in other parts of the world?

As part of Sony Computer Entertainment Europe, the Australian division works closely with our territory counterparts to mirror creative aspects of individual campaigns, but consumer behaviour in terms of gaming needs and media channels can differ and are therefore tailored on a market by market basis.

For the launch of PlayStation Vita, we adopted the European advertising campaign ‘The World is in Play’ which is currently running across a full range of media channels including TV, online, print and outdoor.  

Further to this we implemented some experiential activity unique to SCE Australia.  The first being our launch celebration, a unique concept only possible on Sydney Harbour!  We hosted 200 guests including media, retail and our 3rd Party Partners on a PlayStation themed barge.  SCE Australia’s Managing Director hosted the evening and was supported by Australian duo, Empire of the Sun DJs.  Our guests were treated to a unique event warranted for a PlayStation platform launch celebration, as well as the opportunity to get hands on with the revolutionary device, and the strong line-up of games, ahead of the official in store date. We are really happy with how the industry has really backed the platform launch.

SCE Australia have also partnered with Event Cinemas Vmax for the launch.  Live now, until the end of March, the partnership gives ticket purchasers the chance to win on of 800 PlayStation Vita devices. Cinema goers will be introduced to PS Vita on the big screen prior to the movie and also have the opportunity to visit selected cinemas across the country, where experiential demonstrations of the device are taking place.

Would you consider the Australian campaign successful?

Well, the campaign is still running so it’s a little early to make the success call – however, we certainly hope so and we are happy with initial sales numbers!  The campaign celebrates the idea that though PlayStation Vita, the world is in play.  It brings to life the coexistence of real life and gaming – merging these two worlds.  We’ve been very excited to launch such a significant platform with such an emotionally charged campaign.  Not only does it signify the passion people have for gaming and the role it plays in their lives, but it also gives us a really opportunity showcase the PlayStation brand and introduce both an exciting and revolutionary next generation platform.

Is Australia a handheld PlayStation nation comparative to other European markets, or is PS Vita the underdog here?

PlayStation Vita is the newest kid on the Aussie handheld block and SCE Australia is confident that we’ll vigorously grow our handheld performance in the market.  The strength of our line-up of titles at launch, and the committed support for the platform from our 3rd party partners, is testament to the fact that PlayStation Vita is here to stay.  Globally, the device has sold 1.2 Million since the launch in Japan last December so, we are in a comfortable position – particularly given our focus for the platform is long term, not just launch.

As with PS3, the long term vision for PS Vita will be delivered through dedicated content, but also firmware upgrades will deliver enhanced functionality as well as services and applications.  The first since launch having been delivered just last week, with the introduction of ‘Music Unlimited’ from Sony Entertainment Network.  This is one more reason the cross functionality between PlayStation 3 and PS Vita owners offers owns the benefit of two devices seamlessly connected to  one PlayStation Network ecosystem.  This is something not offered by our competitors.

Thank you for your time!


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