Casio courts youth with new 'YouTube camera'

DOVER, NJ: Casio has teamed up with YouTube to help establish itself as an innovative company among younger consumers by equipping some of its newest digital cameras with a YouTube Capture mode.

DOVER, NJ: Casio has teamed up with YouTube to help establish itself as an innovative company among younger consumers by equipping some of its newest digital cameras with a YouTube Capture mode.

The electronics company secured an exclusive agreement with YouTube to provide software on four of its cameras - including its newest Exilim digital cameras, the EX-S880 and EX-Z77 - that will provide ideal settings for recording, storing, and uploading video to YouTube.

Because the agreement expires in December, Casio is pushing an awareness campaign with the goal of positioning the company as an industry leader before competitors can add the feature to their own devices, said Melissa Keklak, PR manager at Casio.

"We've always been a youthful-type, trendy company," Keklak said. However, some of Casio's innovations have been overlooked in the competitive digital camera market, she explained. But with this effort, Casio's PR goal is to be known as "the YouTube camera" and the first in the market to offer this technology, Keklak added.

"Our biggest challenge is to make as big of a bang as possible during this exclusive time because I'm sure this is something other camera companies will be taking on," she noted.

The agreement also helps the company resonate with the youth market, said Rachel Max, account supervisor at Coyne PR, Casio's AOR. "What we're doing initially is just targeted outreach with these new cameras to those publications that YouTube users are reading," she explained.

In addition, older consumers interested in cameras will be targeted. As a result of the campaign, the company hopes consumers associate simplicity and innovation with the Casio brand, Max added.

Outreach efforts include promoting the agreement to print, broadcast, online, and new-media outlets. The second phase of the campaign involves giving cameras to editors to review the YouTube mode, Keklak said.

And later this year, Casio will launch a contest to raise awareness about the YouTube-enabled cameras. The contest will be featured on YouTube's Web site, but other details are still being determined, she noted.

"Our biggest point with the selling of this product is that it is a very seamless upload," Keklak explained, because the camera's software meets YouTube's uploading criteria.

As part of the agreement, Casio will have the marketing exclusivity for the YouTube feature during the holiday season. All Casio cameras equipped with the YouTube Capture mode will feature a custom YouTube sticker logo, licensed by YouTube.

Later this year, major retail stores will also house displays of the cameras to let consumers try the YouTube mode, Keklak added.

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