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Photoflyer: ‘Keep it sympathetic, especially in these times’

Since its founding in 2003, the company has produced more than 20 million photos. Founder Mitchell Plaizier about the story behind his company.

Photoflyer speaks of the perfect marketing tool for communicating a story as a brand. We are interesting for every brand that communicates one-to-one,’ says Plaizier. It works as follows: Fujifilm receives an application from brand X and within 36 hours Photoflyer delivers the sticker frame, the photo films and cameras bearing the logo of the brand in question, along with an instructional video so that the (own) team can quickly get to the you can get started with the cameras. Then it is the turn of the brand itself. For example, during the Jumbo Racing Dayslast summer 10,000 Photoflyers shot. The photos contained a QR code, which allowed visitors to the event to scan it directly with their smartphone and share it on social media. In addition to Jumbo, Photoflyer works for a wide range of brand types: consumer brands such as Hema, de Bijenkorf and Nike, but also more luxurious brands such as Tesla, Tommy Hilfiger and Chanel.

Why do these brands find Photoflyer interesting?

Because we work purely analogously. That idea is sympathetic. If I point a digital camera or smartphone at you, then you probably don’t like it. After all, you know that I have a digital recording of that moment in my possession, with which I can do anything. You don’t know what happens to it and you prefer to keep control over it yourself. And that’s the great thing about the instax camera: it only takes analog photos and there is no copy of it. You will receive the photo on which my mark appears and you are the only one who has the photo in his possession. The ice has broken and then the brand sympathy starts. We actually say: we understand you as a consumer and that we should not just advertise on you and if we do, that it is yours.

Where is Photoflyer available?

You might only expect us at festivals and events. Yes, of course we are there, but we are also in places close to the purchase moment. So in restaurants, hotel chains and shopping malls. And also on sports fields, product launches, network drinks and reopenings of shops. A clothing store has understood very well that you have to come up with an analogue product and not with a digital trick. Keep it sympathetic, especially at this time.

Photoflyer is therefore not keeping up with the digitization trend.

Well, we are not going along with the technology of digitization. The instax camera did its job in 3 seconds. The photo slowly appears and a situation of about 20 seconds arises in which I as a brand have the time to get to work with you. You don’t throw the photo away, you keep it and you take me home as a brand, in other words the moment when I created brand sympathy.

Yet there are also people who would rather not be photographed, who even find it annoying.

The Photoflyer is used by our customers at the right places and times, so we are hardly ever experienced as annoying. As a brand you naturally also try to be where it happens and where it is relevant. That is no different for us. If I meet you in a bar, I can talk about myself for a long time at first, but I can also offer you a drink. Then I have a starting point. In the customer journey I therefore start with a 2 – 0 lead, and I can go quite far in that. I know you are taking that photo home and then it gets interesting, because how do I get conversion out of this? That is therefore easily measurable. In the case of Jumbo, we could use the hashtag jumbo works to check how many people shared the photo. That’s almost stylized; user generated content.

What does the future of Photoflyer look like?

We currently have resellers in seven European countries and a franchise in Australia. In 2020 we will expand this network to the United States, Canada and even Japan, where Fujifilm itself comes from. We see that Photoflyer is no longer the last minute from the early 2010s, where we were often included in campaigns last minute. Today we are approached at the beginning of the campaign. That is an evolution that Photoflyer has gone through on its own: from an event tool to a partner at the front of the funnel with strategy. We are moving from a product to a medium that you can use yourself. The bus shelter remains the same, but the interpretation is always different.

Originally posted on Marketingtribune’s website in January 2020, written by Lucas Boon.