Marketing Strategy of The Eastman Kodak Company

In the early and mid-nineties, Kodak grew as a company and started developing new and improved models of their cameras. They developed the ‘Kodacolor range’ which included motion picture films, camera and projectors. These were sold at affordable prices. They also provided cameras to the U.S. Government for aerial photography during the First World War
They didn’t stop there. They then introduced the ‘Instamatic camera’ which revolutionized the way people used cameras. It became a household item for amateur photographers because of its versatility and affordability.
Today, however, the iconic brand is on its knees. This is because of the digital age. Kodak was slow in adapting to new-age digital technology, unlike the predecessors who were drivers of technology in the industry with their wide array of innovative patents.
Where did Kodak go wrong? Well, there’s a couple of contributing factors. First off, Kodak used a high-velocity revenue model which entailed making profits off complimentary products to their cameras, i.e. the reel used by the camera. Their strategy was typically to sell cameras at a low cost, and let the film reel fuel its growth and profits. This meant the business was heavily dependant on this particular rigid model.
Kodak was to pay the price for this rigidity soon enough. This came in the form of competition from overseas. The Japanese firm Fuji Film came into America and caught Kodak napping. They introduced reel that was one-fifth cheaper than Kodak’s offering. The result was devastating for Kodak, and even then their lack of market agility was evident by their slow reaction to the market.
Further proof of the business’ inability to adapt to changing technology in the industry came in the early eighties when Sony Corporation ushered in the digital age with the release of the ‘Mavica’, a filmless digital camera that displayed photos directly on the user’s television sets. Pictures could also be printed if desired.