Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Polaroid Lives On, Sort of...

You still can't beat a Polaroid for pure nostalgic emotional appeal. I last owned a Polaroid when they made the Joycam, which came out about the same time as the I-zone - remember that?
Not long ago, Polaroid discontinued their iconic instant print camera, presumably due to the fact it was old-fashioned and not making them enough money. They shut down the film factories, too, and we creatives freaked out. Polaroid film has never been more expensive!

Then, in a misguided attempt to redirect the company, they developed a new digital camera that prints photos instantly on sticky-backed paper, the PoGo. The prints are crystal clear and hi-res - everything a Polaroid shouldn't be. They left their brand's core value behind. Sure, we all love that the print is instantaneous but that trick would get old soon. What made people fans of Polaroid was its intrinsic emo quality, the look of a captured moment.

They should've asked themselves, how can we offer the core value of our product in new formats? They needed to take a big step into an entirely new arena. The answer most likely would've been something like Poladroid software, or any of the other vintage-effect apps that make your too-crisp, too-clear, too-real digital snaps into something more warm and fuzzy...a Polaroid. Could they have reinvented themselves as a software company? Maybe, maybe not.

Read more in this well-written Article in Newsweek

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