Polaroid, you tease.
Over the weekend the Polaroid Instagram account posted, ‘Tune in on September 21 for something new. Hint: it’s not a camera.’ Instantly, the comments were alive with Polaroid fan’s hopes and dreams. Peel apart film, new i-Type film, black and white film, anything film related please, the people said! The message here from the company’s customers was clear, give us film.
It did not seem like Polaroid film lovers were hoping for what they got, which was Polaroid Music. Nothing film or photography related. The release included what they call Polaroid Players, Polaroid Music App, and Polaroid Radio. There are four different designs of music players which remind me of cd players and radios from the first decade of the new millennium. The campaign is called “Music in Full Color” and features more as a lifestyle brand rather than a camera and film company.
Scrolling through the responses on the Instagram announcement post from September 21st, it’s near impossible to find a comment where someone wasn’t disappointed. Comments range from mild disappointment to disbelief to outrage. The response on Twitter is much the same story.
So this begs the question, why has Polaroid gone in this direction? Have they miscalculated or are they diversifying their revenue streams further? It’s not the first time the Company has used the name and brand on ventures and products outside of the camera and film niche. Recently, they partnered with Nike to create a pair of shoes with the Polaroid Spectrum featured in the design of the classic Nike swoosh. They also have put their name on TVs and 3-D printers as well, just to name a couple of examples recently available.
There has been no response from Polaroid on the community feedback on social media yet, but I would imagine they might be wanting to consider their next public announcement or teaser more carefully. Although music and photography are often well-partnered and it’s not a stretch of the imagination to believe Polaroid would brand non-photography related products, the community response to Polaroid’s product announcement was that it was clearly disappointing and not at all what analogue customers wanted.
Contribute to 35mmc for an Ad-free Experience
There are two ways to experience 35mmc without the adverts:
Paid Subscription - £2.99 per month and you'll never see an advert again! (Free 3-day trial).
Content contributor - become a part of the world’s biggest film and alternative photography community blog. All our Contributors have an ad-free experience for life.
Sign up here.
11 thoughts on “A Tease from Polaroid Falls Short: Community Disappointment for Polaroid Music”
Agreed. Hopefully this isn’t the same sort of desperate licensing of the brand that foreshadowed the collapse of Polaroid 1.0.
So not enthused by the Pola-music announcement (except for the possible increase in revenue to keep the film coming). Come on Polaweek!
Thanks for the comment Ken! Good shout on the increase in revenue to invest in film!
Nobody HAS to buy them. Why don’t we film people understand that we are NOT the centre of the world and maybe Polaroid wants to broaden their fan base to new customers which might buy cameras and film later. There’s a billion kids out there who listen to music on their phones, that’s the target group. With things being as they are a new film is very unlikely. Fuji does with 2 emulsions in three formats and they sell way more, I’d say.
I am a bit tired of that company bashing, to be honest.
If you don’t like a product – don’t buy it but don’t complain it is there. Companies are trying to make money and find new customers, maybe it helps to keep those parts of the business alive that we all love.
I find those speakers overly expensive and I won’t buy them but maybe one of my kids finds them cool and wants a pair for X-mas so you never know.
Thanks for your thoughts Martin! A lot of the comments from customers and fans were expressing their reactions to the release, which is important for a company to hear, I can see it as less bashing (for most) and more folks letting Polaroid know what they want. Which is key to business survival, knowing what your customers want. Without customers, there is no business so you could look at it as they are the centre of business world/focus/attention in that way. Of course, there are multiple target markets for Polaroid so it can be hard to cater to different markets at the same time, even if they are hoping for crossover. With Fujifilm doing so well with Instax, customers could easily switch so its a marketing tightrope for Polaroid!
” maybe Polaroid wants to broaden their fan base to new customers which might buy cameras and film later.”
Nokia released the N-Gage, a phone/portable game console, to “broaden their fan base to new customers”. Same with Sony and the Xperia Play, Microsoft with the Zune, Apple with the MobileMe, Google with the hundreds of products they killed off, etc.
The successful businesses largely throw money at their flagship product.
It looks like they posted a follow up to the less than favorable reception they got on that initial post.
Where they say, ” We’ve actually been working hard on something new for a while, an instant camera that can rival the titans of the ‘70s and ‘80s in terms of picture quality. A new camera for i-Type film, with continuous focus optics – coming next year. “
Thanks for sharing DeeDee! That sounds like it should make Polaroid fans happier!
Hope they’re still working on the consistency and quality of their colour film.
If it at least had been a cassette recorder!
Yeah, but that Tru-Coat, they install that at the factory…
This announcement by Polaroid is like trick-or-treating for Halloween candy and getting a bag full of feces. This is what Polaroid thinks of its users.