Sweepstakes Aims to Develop Interest in Polaroid

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Polaroid Corp. wants to get back into the limelight with its "Life of the Party" online and offline sweepstakes promotion.


The company is dangling a top prize of $100,000 for the party of a lifetime. Total spending on this effort, including advertising, is about $3 million.


"The objective of this whole program is to drive people to retail to buy cameras and film," said Lois Marks, senior vice president and management supervisor at Polaroid promotions agency DVC Worldwide, Morristown, NJ.


Consumers who visit www.polaroid.com/party can play the instant-win game by choosing the Polaroid JoyCam or Spectra 1200FF cameras as their game piece. Clicking on the camera image reveals a Polaroid picture that discloses whether the sweepstakes registrant is a winner. Consumers can play once every 48 hours, encouraging repeat visits to the site.


Offline, consumers can find a scratch-off game ticket in specially marked packages of Polaroid items. Each package includes a party card redeemable for $5, $8 or $10 off the next purchase of a Polaroid product. Product prices vary from $25 to $100.


The sweepstakes began last month and ends March 31.


Tracey Leacoma, Wayland, MA-based marketing manager for promotions at Polaroid, said the sweepstakes and supporting media would help raise the profile of Polaroid products.


"One of the issues we faced is, we weren't getting noticed," Leacoma said. "So, I think this is one way to get the consumer to take a second look, or to take their first look in some cases.


"Sometimes," she said, "consumers need a reason to buy the film; it's not top of mind. And the reason for this kind of program, sweepstakes and the added value, is to get people engaged together in the brand, because once we tell them how to use the film and how much fun it is, we've got you hooked."


Advertisements on national networks such as ABC and CBS will tag the promotion to existing spots.


The media plan also covers print publications like People, Martha Stewart Living and Good Housekeeping, plus shelter titles. In-store displays and circulars will chip in at the retail end.


Still, the key challenge is to position the $2 billion Polaroid's camera and film for special events as well as everyday use and fun occasions. Eastman Kodak Co., Fuji, Konica and private-label brands are in hot pursuit of this growing market with their disposable cameras.


"It's a big story for Polaroid, because it's all about getting the camera in use," Marks said. "Once people buy it, they find all sorts of fun ways to include it in parts of their life. So that's what the Web site is trying to educate consumers about."


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