HTC seems to have moved its headquarters to Egypt because right now it’s swimming in denial. HTC chairperson Cher Wang recently told Bloomberg TV that her company’s collapsing earnings were primarily due to bad marketing, a problem that the company is now supposedly fixing with its $1 billion ad blitz featuring Robert Downey Jr. If this “blame the marketing” refrain sounds familiar, that’s because it’s the exact same thing that HTC CEO Peter Chou said 10 months ago when he similarly cited bad marketing for his company’s woes.
While marketing is certainly an important part of any successful product it’s not clear that it’s HTC’s primary problem. And even if it were, its decision to launch a major marketing blitz for the HTC One roughly half a year after the device’s launch — and at a time when the airwaves are already being flooded with ads for the Galaxy Note 3 and the new iPhones — seems like a very questionable decision. While stranger things have happened, Robert Downey’s reign as HTC’s figurehead doesn’t look like it’s going to help the company any more than Alicia Keys’ stint as “creative director” helped BlackBerry.