25 Feb Dear Avid
I’ve called this meeting today because I love you. And I want you to get help. You deserve it. We deserve it. As part of your family (albeit a lengthy alphanumeric system ID in your database), it’s my job to stick by you when the going gets tough. And tell you when you’re screwing the pooch.
This past year has seen a decline in sales around 25% across the entire Avid brand. While the economy is obviously is a large factor, let’s face it – the sales have been declining for a while. This is horrible – you were the originator; the gold standard; and still have some of the most fantastic and innovative tools and workflows around. But that’s not at all what I’m concerned about.
Avid, I could ramble on about cost, just where the heck you position yourself in the market (Pinnacle what?) and the proprietary hardware thing, but I’ll hold back on that. For now.
Avid, you’re just not…cool. There, I said it. You’re square. You’re boring. You’re dull. Like an instructional manual, you may have most of the answers, but you sure as heck don’t inspire me.
Your competitor, unfortunately, has the living embodiment of a deity as a figurehead, with the rounded corners and iGloss to seal the deal. While I don’t ask you to be the coolest kid around, I do wish you were a bit more hip. Hip with your already more than adequate functionality. People take notice when you’ve got the complete package. This reminds us that we are capable of abilities beyond ourselves and take the risks we may not normally take. They inspire. William Wallace. Benjamin Franklin. The Fonz. Who do you have, Avid? A new logo doesn’t cut it.
I’d like to see more flash. Be loud. Be sassy. Have some sizzle to that steak, yo.
Your product is unquestionably great. Your workflows and collaboration tools are still industry leading. But these qualities are often overshadowed by the awesomeness factor elsewhere. I know it sucks, but sometimes it’s like High School up in here.
What troubles me the most is you, Digi. I’ve been meaning to ask – are you a fan of the Chicago Cubs? I’ve always been more of a White Sox fan myself. However, coming from Chicago, I’ve long realized that the Cubs front office can field just about any team and still sell-out Wrigley Field daily. So, what’s the incentive to revamp things? The existing fan base is there regardless. They can spend less money and still be numero uno in Chicago. But does that really – really – make the fans happy? Avid Audio / Digi, are you listening? It’s been eight years since there was a professional solution refresh. Eight. In that time:
• Facebook has been invented and grown to over 400 million active users.
• American Idol has crowned 8 winners, and helped sell over 49 million albums.
• I’ve used the term “sonofabitch” (or some variant thereof) 3000 times (est.)
• Law & Order and subsequent spin-offs have aired over 500 new episodes.
• Apple has released 6 full desktop OS versions, while Microsoft has released…I lost track (I actually spent a large amount of time researching this, and the number – with all of the variants – lies somewhere between 2 and 31)
• Two presidential elections have occurred.
• You’ve had 1 professional solution.
It’s time, Digi. I don’t want to see you topple. How would you feel if some small time audio app suddenly captured the hearts and minds of the audio community and usurped your reign? Like Final Cut did with…oh wait. Nevermind.
So. Avid. And your many divisions. I pledge to continue to push you where I can. I’ll recommend you, and even stick with you when things are bad. But I’m worried for your future family. Will they even be there? Or will they abandon you in the retirement home?