Home  › Marketing › Strategies

Former Kodak CMO: Shorten Up Those Elevator Pitches

  |  August 17, 2010   |  Comments

Jeffrey Hayzlett said brands must also tap social networks to engage, educate, excite, and evangelize - and shape product development.

Former Kodak CMO Jeffrey Hayzlett said marketers must shorten their elevator pitches and ensure that consumers understand the value of their brands.

In fact, he insisted the elevator pitches should be 118 seconds or less.

Why 118 seconds? Because the average elevator ride in New York City is 110 seconds and the average person's attention span is 8 seconds, Hayzlett quipped during his keynote speech at SES San Francisco, which is part of Connected Marketing Week. "As CMOs, our elevator pitches have gotten too long," he said.

So what's Kodak's elevator pitch today? "Only Kodak creates emotional technology that makes it easier to make, manage and move images and information so people can strengthen relationships," said Hayzlett, CMO at Kodak from 2006 through May 2010.

He had no shortage of other 118-second pitches:

--"You want to build hearts and minds, not eyeballs and ears."

--"People don't take pictures. They capture memories, moments."

--"Cause tension. That's your job [in marketing]… In sports, there's the adage, 'no pain, no gain'."

Hayzlett also told war stories about the tumult that he and his team encountered as Kodak made the transition from a company that once sold traditional film to one that now sells digital cameras, printers, and video cameras.

During that transition, marketing employees who were slow to embrace change were fired. Hayzlett characterized those employees as the "slowest common denominator" who resisted change.

"We were an old school company. We were trying to be cool, but were dressing like Elmer Fudd," he said, referring to a cartoon character created more than a half-century ago.

Hayzlett, who's now promoting his book, "The Mirror Test," also encouraged brands to embrace social media to engage, educate, excite, and evangelize.

In fact, someone tweeted that Kodak should add an external microphone jack to its pocket video camera, a suggestion that was incorporated into the Kodak Zi8, the next-generation of the camera. The feature, he said, helped Kodak increase its market share.

ClickZ Live Toronto Twitter Canada MD Kirstine Stewart to Keynote Toronto
ClickZ Live Toronto (May 14-16) is a new event addressing the rapidly changing landscape that digital marketers face. The agenda focuses on customer engagement and attaining maximum ROI through online marketing efforts across paid, owned & earned media. Register now and save!

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Anna Maria Virzi

Anna Maria Virzi, ClickZ's executive editor from 2007 until 2012, covered Internet business and technology since 1996. She was on the launch team for Ziff Davis Media's Baseline and also worked at Forbes.com, Web Week, Internet World, and the Connecticut Post.

COMMENTSCommenting policy

comments powered by Disqus

Get the ClickZ Marketing newsletter delivered to you. Subscribe today!

COMMENTS

UPCOMING EVENTS

Featured White Papers

ion Interactive Marketing Apps for Landing Pages White Paper

Marketing Apps for Landing Pages White Paper
Marketing apps can elevate a formulaic landing page into a highly interactive user experience. Learn how to turn your static content into exciting marketing apps.

eMarketer: Redefining Mobile-Only Users: Millions Selectively Avoid the Desktop

Redefining 'Mobile-Only' Users: Millions Selectively Avoid the Desktop
A new breed of selective mobile-only consumers has emerged. What are the demos of these users and how and where can marketers reach them?

Jobs

    • Contact Center Professional
      Contact Center Professional (TCC: The Contact Center) - Hunt ValleyLooking to join a workforce that prides themselves on being routine and keeping...
    • Recruitment and Team Building Ambassador
      Recruitment and Team Building Ambassador (Agora Inc.) - BaltimoreAgora, www.agora-inc.com, continues to expand! In order to meet the needs of our...
    • Design and Publishing Specialist
      Design and Publishing Specialist (Bonner and Partners) - BaltimoreIf you’re a hungry self-starter, creative, organized and have an extreme...