Sunday, October 31, 2010
Given its sprawling portfolio HP competed with a wide range of companies, but its ‘‘You + HP’’ campaign, while leveraging and further establishing its overall brand identity, directly pitted the company against other digitalcamera manufacturers. At the time of the campaign it was number six among digital-camera vendors in the United States, well behind segment leaders Eastman Kodak Company and Sony Corporation. Kodak’s success, according to Advertising Age, was chiefly attributable to its ‘‘century-long simple stance that Kodak equals pictures.’’ Though hampered somewhat by losses in the rapidly diminishing film-photography side of its business, Kodak could claim, like HP, to offer simple solutions to the entire picture-making process, especially as PCs became unnecessary for printing. Kodak had the industry-leading photo printer as well as the industry-leading online printing and storage site (called the Kodak EasyShare Gallery), and it had kiosks at major retail stores, such as Wal-Mart and CVS, that allowed consumers yet another outlet for printing pictures. Kodak’s digital-imaging ads therefore focused on ease of use while reinforcing the company’s history of photographic excellence.
Sony likewise made appeals to consumers based on its legacy, but that legacy was one of ‘‘quality technology and cutting-edge design,’’ according to Advertising Age, rather than one of film photography. This image merged neatly with the company’s digital-imaging marketing efforts, which drew attention to the convenient size and sleekness of Sony cameras. In 2005 Sony reinforced its image by unveiling the tagline ‘‘WorryFree Digital Products,’’ orchestrating a marketing push with partner retailers to head off the concerns of first-time digitalcamera buyers and assure them that its products were simple and easy to use.