Seems that Sony Malaysia is embarking on a rather bold experiment in combating piracy. According to the article in TheStar, the company is going to test some alternative retail channels in order to encourage more people to buy original sony CDs. They will start selling a few select compilation albums for only RM16.90 each. However, the main thing that caught my eye were the retail channels – pasar malam, newsstands, petrol kiosks and convenience stores.
To me, this is a great idea. Adapting local retail channels for your products is a smart way of trying to increase sales. While some of these channels (such as the pasar malam) is a fairly local thing, it will potentially put the Sony wares in direct competition with their pirated brethren. You see, these night markets are filled with pirated discs already. Selling an original product would potentially help them recoup some of the dollars lost to piracy. I think that the lesson to be learned is that making a little less money is better than not making any at all.
Anyway, according to the article, Sony has already tried the concept in Thailand and it seems to be well received. I do hope that it works out for them in Malaysia too. Hopefully, they will then extend the entire concept to more product lines, particularly local music and films. I highly doubt that they would peddle Michael Jackson’s greatest hits in a pasar malam but I could easily be proven wrong.
Sony’s new experiment could serve as a test case for a bunch of other things.