Scott Kelby's marketing skill continue to amaze me.
I posted the other day in “The Amazing Marketing Power of Scott Kelby” that I was disappointed in Scott Kelby for hyping a product close to him in a blatantly dishonest fashion. It seems that he responded to the tsunami of criticism a few days later in a video on one of his sites, KelbyTV, where, around 10 minutes into the show, he addresses the issue.
This is shockingly dishonest.... the “went and did it” has nothing to do with the context he set up. Folks saying “We wish we didn't have to go to Photoshop” are not asking for an external application with a different name.
But Scott is apparently the master of spin because he has he balls to completely switch gears from the very question he introduced (solving the biggest complaint he hears from Lightroom users) to the unrelated discussion of who might want to buy the product he was hyping.
Just amazing. I am in awe.
It's as if he said...
... and then you find that “did it” really means that they now have “garbage bags” instead of “trash bags” that husbands have to haul to the street. You still have to leave the house. The problem initially posed is not at all addressed, though he made it seem so to those who trusted him. And then when you point this out, that he's been so disingenuous as to be dishonest, he rolls his eyes to the delight of his fandom and fires back with “If you don't want garbage bags, don't buy them! Duh!”
That's his real marketing genius, shifting focus to the unrelated criticism about the product being overpriced and underfeatured, because it allows him to respond with the completely reasonable “if you don't want it, don't buy it”. With attention now on this tangential issue, he conveniently ignores the whole question of whether he was honest in the first place.
In the video, he then went on to read one of the critical comments that someone left on his blog, but does it in a belittling fashion, making fun of the English, reminding me of how the “cool” grade-school clique would pick on others on the playground. It was pathetic.
Scott was joined in the video by Adobe's Terry White, who passed up on his opportunity to make things clear, instead also focusing attention on the unrelated “if it's not for you, don't buy it” angle. I'm so very disappointed.
I don't have a vested interest in Scott Kelby or whether people fall for his untruthy self-serving hype, but for me it comes down to a simple “dishonesty sucks”, especially when it comes to someone whose reputation I had previously held in such high regard. I understand now that the high regard must have been due to a lack of attention on my part, but this current situation is one where my technical knowledge allows me to see the dishonesty clearly and immediatley, more so than many photographers at first might, so I feel some obligation to share that knowledge in these blog posts.
Of course, Scott doesn't mention that in response to the initial brewhaha I created a Lightroom plugin that actually does integrate Lightroom images, non-destructively, into layers within Photoshop. To my knowledge he's never mentioned any of my Lightroom plugins, even though they are likely responsible for the majority of plugin installs in existence. He should mention them because it would directly benefit his audience, but I believe he doesn't because he doesn't make any money by mentioning other people's free plugins. Normally I'd think that such a self-serving attitude would result in being shunned to the margins, so it's a true testament to his amazing powers of self marketing that he continues to command attention.
FWIW, here's the transcript starting at 9:58 into the video:
So here's the thing, it's a plugin for Lightroom. It gives you pretty much, you know, multiple layers... you can add layers... you can duplicate layers, you got all the blend modes... multiply da da dah... So here's how that thing came about, just so you know. So, OnOne Software was here a few months back and they showed us all the stuff that they're doing in the future and amazing... truly amazing stuff.
(show sidetracked momentarily by an unrelated production issue)
So, it does this basic layers functionality... they came and they showed us all their new stuff for the future... we were blown out... and then they said “what are you hearing from people... you know, what are people... whatch'r biggest complaint that you hear from people?” that maybe they could solve?
And I said "Well, I do a nationwide tour on Lightroom... Matt and I both do, we do this big tour, and the biggest complaint we hear from Lightroom users is we hear one thing. We hear them say “We wish we didn't have to go to Photoshop to do things”. They love Lightroom so much (and so do I) that they want to stay in Lightroom as much as is humanly possible. They want to stay in Lightroom. I understand that. So I told OnOne, if there was a way you could do a layers plugin, right, people... people would love it... if they had a layers plugin.
Alright, and so they said "Actually, we already do some kind of layers stuff in our stuff now.. if we made it standalone" I thought that would be great. That would be fantastic. So, they went and did it. They made a plugin.
'Cause here's the thing, and I think that there's a misnomer here. Number one, not everybody that uses Lightroom has Photoshop or Elements. I talk to people every single day that came up from iPhoto and they bought Lightroom. They don't have Elements.... they don't have Photoshop... but they would love to do layers. That's all. So, it's not for everybody, if you have Photoshop...
|Terry White:||If you have Photoshop, there would be very little reason to use the plugin.|
|Scott Kelby:||Right. I didn't say “This is breaking news for Photoshop users”, I just said, you know, this is, um, this is big news, it's... it's a game changer for everybody that can't afford Photoshop and doesn't want to learn Elements, cause learning Elements is like learning Photoshop.|
|Scott Kelby:||So and it brings up all kinds of other issues, 'cause it manages photos one way and all kinds of stuff...|
I have no idea what he was trying to communicate in that last sentence, but anyway, he then goes on to belittle the commenter that disagreed with him, but does not in any way address the root of the criticism.
This was the first time that I'd seen Scott in video, though I suspect it will also be the last.