Vizio enters the HD-TV fray

As this California-based tech co competes for share against Samsung and LG, will Canadians buy into Vizio's message of simplicity?

In an exclusive distribution partnership with Best Buy and Future Shop, HD TV and sound system maker Vizio is coming to Canada to compete against Samsung and LG.

Already established in the U.S., Lily Knowles, VP of product marketing at the California-based electronics company, says it was the right time to expand into Canada based on its current product assortment and the opportunity to partner with the electronics retailers. What’s more, she says they identified a space to grow here in the “ultra HD” TV space.

The brand targets upper middle class families that are growing or semi-established, on the cusp of upgrading (whether that be upgrading to a new home or adding technology to different rooms in the house).

The brand is bringing in nine TVs and four home theatre products to the Canadian market. Knowles says they chose Best Buy and Future Shop because of the retailers’ expertise in the product space, allowing them to answer consumer questions about the new offering.

The brand’s DNA is based on the idea of simplicity, Knowles adds, something she thinks will resonate just as well with Canadians as it has with Americans. “The pain point we’re addressing is that everyone faces challenges trying to master what the new technology is. And we can simplify it and make it universally accepted.”

To launch the brand, Vizio will kick off TV spots on Sept. 12, featuring a young girl and her father, who feels technologically inept. However, the TV is so simple to install, he becomes a tech-master. The 30-second spot, by California-based David & Goliath, will be supported by a big PR push, as well as digital search and retargeted ads in conjunction with Best Buy and Future Shop. At this stage, there is no talk of bringing on a Canadian agency for the Canadian creative.

The brand competes directly with Samsung in the U.S., she says, often trading for the top share spot, though Knowles says Vizio differentiates itself from the competition through its positioning.

“We’ve found over the years that a lot of our competitors focus on talking about the features and trying to directly sell the features,” she says. “And our core DNA is what the consumer experience should be, and that drives our marketing.”