Kodak will take it to the Max for film line

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Eastman Kodak Co. will expand its 1998 media ad budget by at least 25%, with the "biggest chunk of money" being put behind its Max film.

A new TV spot for the film broke during the Winter Olympics last week, with the tagline, "Max film. It's all you need to know." Burt Reynolds makes a cameo in the commercial from Ogilvy & Mather Worldwide, New York.


A major new buy will be in radio, reportedly making Kodak one of the largest advertisers in the medium.

"There will be an incredibly powerful push in advertising and merchandising," said Daniel Palumbo, Kodak's chief marketing officer-consumer imaging, who calls the effort an investment in the "megabrand."

The push behind Max will be at the expense of the FunSaver single-use camera.

According to Mr. Palumbo, FunSavers will be "predominately replaced by Max" versions of the cameras, which are smaller and have the higher-quality film in them.

He said the effort will not negatively impact the Advantix line of Advanced Photo System products.


Kodak also is continuing its experimentation with the youth market in Europe, trying different approaches to camera designs, equipment and film-development prices as well as advertising, Senior VP-Chief Marketing Officer Carl Gustin told Advertising Age.

Though Saatchi & Saatchi's Kid Connection has been vying for that business since 1996, work is being tried from other agencies as well. Messrs. Gustin and Palumbo would not say what new agencies are being used, but that Kid Connection and O&M are "still candidates" for that business.


New youth-oriented advertising and possibly equipment is expected to hit the U.S. later this year after the European tests are complete, they said.

At the Photo Marketing Association convention here last week, Kodak announced a new partnership with Internet photo company PictureVision.


Kodak acquired a 51% stake in the company, integrating two Internet-based digital networks -- the Kodak Picture Network and PhotoNet -- for photo sharing and storage.

Consumers will be able to access Kodak's 30,000 and PictureVision's 9,000 locations to retrieve photos sent to them electronically by family and friends.


Kodak currently has 13,000 ImageMagic stations in the U.S. Mr. Palumbo said those will be rebranded Picture Maker to be in more consumer-friendly language.

Picture Maker may also get dedicated advertising, though the newly integrated photo sharing network may not.

Copyright February 1998, Crain Communications Inc.

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