Creativity in Public Relations » Youth Marketing http://blogs.hillandknowlton.com/ryanpeal Creativity, marketing, great ideas, smart thinking, public relations, insights, inspirations, innovations and more. (Formerly known as Ryan's View) Wed, 05 Aug 2009 00:52:54 +0000 http://wordpress.org/?v=2.9.2 en hourly 1 Samsung’s 24-Hour Dance-Off http://blogs.hillandknowlton.com/ryanpeal/2009/07/07/samsungs-24-hour-dance-off/ http://blogs.hillandknowlton.com/ryanpeal/2009/07/07/samsungs-24-hour-dance-off/#comments Tue, 07 Jul 2009 00:34:51 +0000 Ryan Peal http://blogs.hillandknowlton.com/ryanpeal/?p=639 24-hour Dance-off – love it!  On July 7th in London 100 competitors will take their positions on the dance floor, slip on headphones, turn on their Samsung BEAT Edition DJ music phone and start dancing . . . and dancing, and dancing for up to 24 hours as they compete in The Last Call to win €10,000 and a date with Swedish pop star September.

Last month Europeans in 9 countries entered for the chance to win a trip to London to compete in the finals, embedding a competition widget to their blog, Facebook and MySpace pages.  The widget was active for only 24 hours, so contestants had to encourage friends and family to cast their votes quickly.  The widget had a built-in leader board element so you could see if you were in the race fairly quickly.  A few weeks ago the 100 lucky winners got the call that they won a new Samsung mobile and a trip to London to compete in the grand finale.

Now this week the 100 contestants will compete at nightclub “Matter” at the O2 arena in London – each dancer has one square to dance in, and stay in.  The trick is that if anyone receives a text or a call during the competition they are out.  So the contestants have been telling their friends via their social networks that they are in the finals and to not call or text on July 7 – a natural way to talk about Samsung, the new mobile and the competition.

For the last few weeks each contestant has been working on a campaign page, adding photographs and videos (connected to the campaign’s YouTube site) and links to follow them on Facebook, MySpace and of course Twitter.   Each was interviewed answering a few questions and talking about the competition.  Everyone has some fun stories on what they are doing to make sure no one calls or texts them on that day.  And on the site you can suggest music tracks to be added to the playlist.  The whole fun will be streamed live on the campaign site, worth watching and seeing how it all plays out.

What can we learn from the campaign?  As always, having an simple concept always works – dance for 24r hours, last one dancing wins.  Doesn’t get any easier than that.  Next up, integrating the product into the campaign.  That works here naturally as the Samsung mobile provides the music at the event and people have to tell friends/family not to call/text because of the competition- a natural way to talk about the product and for it to be a part of the fun.  Leveraging social media to spread the word.  This too is built into the competition, using widgets to drive awareness, creating fan profile pages, etc., all scoring major points.  And finally, great visuals/content and a way for all to participate – 24-hour streaming of people dancing in little squares to music on their headphones, you can’t help but be a bit curious about the whole thing.

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4 Reasons Why I Now “Get” The Possibilities of Augmented Reality http://blogs.hillandknowlton.com/ryanpeal/2009/06/30/4-reasons-why-i-now-%e2%80%9cget%e2%80%9d-the-possibilities-of-augmented-reality/ http://blogs.hillandknowlton.com/ryanpeal/2009/06/30/4-reasons-why-i-now-%e2%80%9cget%e2%80%9d-the-possibilities-of-augmented-reality/#comments Tue, 30 Jun 2009 00:41:01 +0000 Ryan Peal http://blogs.hillandknowlton.com/ryanpeal/?p=635 I love new technology advances and what it does to your brain – stopping you in your tracks and having something you see every day in front of you become something totally different.  I’ve been watching the new world of “augmented reality” (AR) and have been waiting for the “A-HA” moment – not from the musical group from the 80’s introducing a new augmented reality music video (although it could happen) but to see the technology in action and to see how I’d have fun with it or how it would basically make life easier or better.  Over the past few weeks a few great examples have made their way into my world and now my brain can’t stop thinking of how to use AR in some campaign coming up.  To stop you from scratching your head on the AR scene I thought I’d share them with you (and recommend to keep an eye on this interesting area:

Layar. This is the world’s first mobile Augmented Reality browser (and only works on an Android mobile operating system and I think probably on the new iPhone 3GS) showing real time digital information on top of reality, reality in this case the camera screen of the mobile phone. While looking through the phones camera lens, a user can see houses for sale, popular bars and shops, jobs, healthcare providers and ATMs. The first country to launch Layar is The Netherlands and yes, it rocks.  Watch the video here (it’s awesome).

Zugara. Imagine standing in front of your webcam and “holding up” clothes of all colors and designs and styles in front of your body, helping you see what each would look like – all from home.  Then send a photo to your friends simply asking “does my butt look big in this?”  With a new online shopping app from Zugara that brings together the functionality of Augmented Reality and Motion Capture in some incredible fashion fun.  No more embarrassing moments trying on clothes in public.  Check out the fun here.

US Postal Service. You know when you are ready to ship something with an overnight delivery service and not sure if what you are going to ship will fit?  Now, thanks to this cool tool, you can find out in a very fun way.  Check it out here.

Topps 3D Live baseball cards. And my favorite of the new ones thus far, a very cool interactive 3D baseball card augmented reality masterpiece from Topps.  Your baseball card comes to life via AR, creating a cool 3D baseball player and the ability to play a game too.  It’s hard to explain, but easy to watch to see for yourself via the video below.

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Smarties Colors For A Cause Charity Campaign http://blogs.hillandknowlton.com/ryanpeal/2009/06/23/smarties-colors-for-a-cause-charity-campaign/ http://blogs.hillandknowlton.com/ryanpeal/2009/06/23/smarties-colors-for-a-cause-charity-campaign/#comments Tue, 23 Jun 2009 00:23:46 +0000 Ryan Peal http://blogs.hillandknowlton.com/ryanpeal/?p=626 Yes, I’m a big fan of Smarties – I used to eat them all the time and lick them and stick them on my face to make colored circles on my nose and cheeks (you know you did it too).  Those little candies have just launched a new campaign called “Colors For A Cause” that makes it fun and easy for people to help Smarties decide where to direct donations to some great organisations doing their part to help the world.

When you visit the campaign site you first see six Smarties candies (in six different colors) spinning around, each representing specific causes like the environment, arts, sports, health, humanitarian and animal protection.  By clicking on a Smartie you learn more about each specific cause area, including easy ways you can help make a difference (like building a bird feeder to help animals or playing frisbee to help with your health) along with some interesting facts (like the worlds fastest tennis serve was 249 kms and the artist who designed the Rolling Stones lip logo was only paid 50 pounds).

Next up, the fun part, telling Smarties where you’d like it to donate the 10 cents donation it is making on your behalf.  There are two ways you can decide how to donate – one is an easy one, simply click on the interactive big Smartie and allocate specific percentages to each cause (it takes a bit to get used to how it works but keep trying), 100% could go to animal protection or you could divide a percentage equally to each cause.  If you aren’t sure, there is a 10-question quiz that offers you some multiple choices and uses your answers to get a sense of the kind of person that you are and suggests a specific percentage breakdown to each cause.

Once you’ve made your donation choices there’s an easy way to invite your friends to help make a donation with a Facebook application.  The Colors For A Cause Facebook app (you’ll need to accept it to check it out) has a nice visual overview of where the money thus far has been directed by visitors – today the leader is the environment – and shows how much you have donated (you can come back every day to vote during the campaign perioid) as well as how much your friends have donated (based on them seeing the campaign in your Facebook feed).  And the page also includes a runny tally of how much Smarties will be donating based on people who have participated – with the total just clearing $20,000 – showing how quickly 10 cents can add up.  And there’s also a Colors For A Cause store where you can buy hoodies or t-shirts or posters to raise even more funds.

What can we learn?  For one thing, everyone loves to help the world, and this campaign provides a natural “feel good” vibe to it.  I know it’s only 10 cents per visit but those ten cents can add up quickly and by being able to visit the site every day during the multi-week campaign you can help drive the totals up.  It’s sort of like a virtual water fountain, the ones that people throw coins in that are collected for charity.  I also like the easy way to integrate with Facebook and to see how much money you and your friends have contributed.  And the content and easy way to browse through different causes and also learn what you can do to help (beyond making a donation) is also a great way to keep the authentic voice high for this effort.

How can we make it better?  Not sure what’s being done off-line (as the campaign is taking place in Canada and I’m in Australia) but would love to see some giant Smarties costumed people out and about where the youth are playing this Summer in Canada – handing out smarties and directing people to the website.  It also would be nice for people to be able to add a “why I’m supporting a specific cause” to make it more personal and to feel like their voice could motivate others.  And I’m also a big believer that people like to see their name – so some type of scrolling leaderboard of people’s first name and last initial could have been nice too.  And just saw that the Facebook feed about the campaign shows up but there isn’t a link that someone could click on to get to the campaign to participate.

All in all, I love it, it works on so many levels and positions Smarties as a brand in touch with the interests of its young fans and has a lot of fun in the process.  Now, go vote, the campaign is over in 2 weeks!

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Old Spice Hands Out The Cash http://blogs.hillandknowlton.com/ryanpeal/2009/06/18/old-spice-hands-out-the-cash/ http://blogs.hillandknowlton.com/ryanpeal/2009/06/18/old-spice-hands-out-the-cash/#comments Thu, 18 Jun 2009 01:15:51 +0000 Ryan Peal http://blogs.hillandknowlton.com/ryanpeal/?p=623 Everyone loves cash – plain and simple.  While some promotions have prizes and trips and the like, Old Spice is launching a new campaign that is all about winning cash.  The campaign – Swaggerize Your Wallet – provides actually lots of ways to win cash, depending upon how much work you want to put into it – which I think is fair enough.  The campaign is connected to Old Spice’s deodorant line, Swagger, with body spray, deodorant, body wash and more focused on 18 to 24 year old guys (who obviously love cash like the rest of us).  This effort follows the hilarious “SwaggerizeMe” campaign that made it easy for people to create fake articles to show up all over the Internet to make them look “as awesome as possible.”

The challenges are all a bit out there and right on target for the challenge 18 to 24 year old target who needs the right motivation to do anything – something too hard or too cheesy can backfire.  You can win $500 by making a cake in the shape of the Swagger logo, eating it with friends in a Swagger way, videotaping the whole thing and hoping the judges pick yours as the winner.  You can win $1,500 by throwing a Swagger product by at least 65MPH and capturing the whole thing with a radar gun.  Or you can win $2,500 with the old classic “hold up an Old Spice Swagger sign at a big sporting event and be caught on TV.”

The campaign site will have new challenges posted every week, with 2 weeks normally given for people to send in entries to compete.  You can just imagine the great photos and videos – solid Old Spice Swagger content – that will start showing up on YouTube and Flickr and of course all over people’s Facebook profiles too, showing up their cake or fastball.

This is one of my new favorite campaigns for a bunch of reasons.  The challenges have the right balance of effort and return – making a cake to win $500, a cake you can eat so it’s like someone paying you to eat which you have to do anyway.  And the challenges all sort of feel like some 21 year old just randomly thought them up, none have to be explained twice.  And of course the product is in the center of every challenge, so as far as product/brand integration, it’s hard to miss that.

Only thing that could improve would be some added social media connections.  I was unable to find a Twitter feed for the campaign – which you’d think would be an easy way to remind people of the new challenges happening each week.  And nothing on Facebook or YouTube either, but maybe once the campaign kicks off and has some content these areas will pop up too.  And didn’t see a lot of blogger conversations yet about the campaign, was thinking there would be a bloggers-only competition to get the blogosphere talking about the campaign too.

The campaign kicks off this week so we’ll see how it goes.  The good news is that because the campaign is over multiple weeks with more challenges coming up, there is an easy opportunity for the Old Spice people to get some feedback and keep coming up with new challenges, looking for those that really hit the mark and get people talking, playing and videotaping.  Watch this space.

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Indie Sydney Radio Station Asks Richard Branson For $1M http://blogs.hillandknowlton.com/ryanpeal/2009/06/15/indie-sydney-radio-station-asks-richard-branson-for-1m/ http://blogs.hillandknowlton.com/ryanpeal/2009/06/15/indie-sydney-radio-station-asks-richard-branson-for-1m/#comments Sun, 14 Jun 2009 22:43:32 +0000 Ryan Peal http://blogs.hillandknowlton.com/ryanpeal/?p=615 Before the economy drama independent radio stations were already having a tough time, battling not only the mega broadcast radio networks that own multiple stations but also iPods, MySpace music, digital radio and satellite radio, just to name.   But when you throw in reduced advertising dollars it’s easy to see why indie radio stations are hoping to hear a different economic tune soon.

One great indie radio station in Sydney – Fbi – is tackling their financial challenges head on, recently launching a fundraising campaign with one target in mind:  Richard Branson and $1M dollars (or 450,000 British Pounds).  While Sir Richard may not seem like an obvious choice – he’s not Australian and he doesn’t have any connections to independent radio – but he does like one thing . . . publicity.

The campaign – Ask Richard – launched a little over a month ago and works on a simple premise:  get Richard’s attention through some type of publicity stunt or event or something that motivates him to donate $1M to FBi.  If your action/idea/stunt was the catalyst for Richard to hand over some big bucks you get rewarded too – to the tune of $50,000.  (And don’t worry, if Richard donates less based on your idea you still get 5% of whatever he gives.)  The campaign blog site and Twitter activity captures everyone’s amazing ideas and inspires others to do more.

To get Richard’s attention, the station has given its loyal listeners an open playbook – do whatever you think could work to get Richard to write the big check.  And the listeners have responded with a number of amazing ideas, including:

  • Hosting a flash mob wearing Richard masks in front of Sunrise (Australia’s top morning news show) studios when Sir Richard was in town and being interviewed on the show
  • Having a “We Play Til You Pay” all day concert event, inviting people via Twitter and Facebook to be a part of the event
  • Creating a mini viral video game with a Richard character grabbing money off of a tree and giving it to FBi before the tax man comes
  • Launching a Google Ad Words campaign under the assumption that Richard Google’s his own name and will then see the FBi campaign
  • Making T-shirts and posters and having fans wear them and put them up everywhere
  • Translating “Ask Richard” into as many languages as possible

The campaign works on multiple fronts.  First, selecting a high profile target (that would be Richard) and leveraging a known insight that motivates his daily life (that would be publicity).  Next, giving everyone a “do whatever” call to action, not limiting any idea or thought.  And of course the simple visual for the campaign being used on T-shirts, posters and social media banners ties everything together.  A great example of a campaign that knows its audience, keeps the conversation credible and authentic.

Now the finale – Richard Branson called in this morning (15 June) to FBi for a live radio interview from his Necker Island home.  Turns out, as the story goes, that Richard heard about the “Ask Richard” campaign first from an Australian girl who allegedly swam 2 1/2 miles from an island close to Richard’s island, swimming right up to his beach and telling him about the campaign.  (Sounds fishy but let’s go with it.)  Richard said he has asked his teams at Virgin Mobile and Virgin Atlantic and V- Australia to help out FBi – and on-air promised to give a few flights to the UK and LA via his airlines for some lucky winners of the radio station.  The station is starting a “Save FBi” supporter drive campaign and will definitely use these prizes for some great fundraising efforts later this year.  The on-air host for FBi was able to get some money out of Richard – $70 – to become an annual member of FBi.  Richard stated the obvious – they get asked for money all the time and try to channel their funds to their global efforts around climate change and disease control in Africa.  The $70 is not $1,000,000 but no doubt Richard’s Virgin empire will be jumping in to help as much as possible, and hopefully will help keep the FBi radio station on the air for years to come.

Who knows, maybe Richard will change his mind.  Come on Richard, pay up already.  We’ll call it RFBi – Richard’s FBi – haven’t you always wanted to “own” the FBI?

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Levis Drops Pants With Twitter http://blogs.hillandknowlton.com/ryanpeal/2009/06/10/levis-drops-pants-with-twitter/ http://blogs.hillandknowlton.com/ryanpeal/2009/06/10/levis-drops-pants-with-twitter/#comments Wed, 10 Jun 2009 00:22:07 +0000 Ryan Peal http://blogs.hillandknowlton.com/ryanpeal/?p=613 I’m of course on Twitter (@ryanpeal) and have had a lot of fun watching to see how brands are using the new fun to engage with people in a number of ways.  I’ve seen brands simply trying to sell stuff (like Dell), those trying to provide customer care (like Telstra BigPond) and some just trying to show the fun side of their brands (like Zappos).  Today I came across a new way to use Twitter – pant dropping!

A few weeks ago Levis in Australia and New Zealand started sending out people wearing new Levis and twittering about it with their iSpy Levis Twitter campaign.  Ok nothing out of the ordinary yet.  The catch, if you follow the campaign by Levis on Twitter you will see that their tweets are clues on where they are, providing photos and narrative of things around them, helping you track them down.  Why would you want to track them down, to get a free pair of jeans!  If you follow the tweets and hunt down your prey and ask “are those levis?” – magic will happen – instantly the people will drop their pants and give them to you right on the spot (putting a smile on your face like the winner above, Jimmy Curtis).  I’m guessing in reality you get a pair that is your size but you never know down under – may be forced to squeeze into some jeans but at least they are free.

A great example to share with clients and colleagues of how Twitter can add some personality and fun to your brand and have you actually engage with real, live people in the process.  Great work Levis!

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Miley Cyrus, Jonas Brothers and Disney Give Away $1M http://blogs.hillandknowlton.com/ryanpeal/2009/06/01/miley-cyrus-jonas-brothers-and-disney-give-away-1m/ http://blogs.hillandknowlton.com/ryanpeal/2009/06/01/miley-cyrus-jonas-brothers-and-disney-give-away-1m/#comments Mon, 01 Jun 2009 01:05:25 +0000 Ryan Peal http://blogs.hillandknowlton.com/ryanpeal/?p=597 When I heard about this new campaign from Disney I was surprised that an idea like this hadn’t happened before as it makes sense on so many fronts.  But, better late than never as Disney and a star power line-up announces “Friends For Change: Project Green.”

The campaign is grounded on creating a community of Disney fans that all want to do their part in helping to change the world by focusing on four specific areas:  climate, water, waste and habitat.  The campaign tackles each area for three months at a time, culminating on one day when everyone involved will simultaneously do something together like reducing water or changing their home thermostat.  Ongoing the campaign will encourage youth to turn off lights, reusable water bottles and more – great things that hopefully will become habits for the next generation.

Disney is getting the word out by leveraging all of the big stars in its world like Miley, Jonas Brothers 1, 2 and 3, Selena Gomez and all of the other teen rock stars connected to the company.  YouTube has lots of videos from the stars, Radio Disney will air special messages, public service announcements on the Disney Channel and I’m guessing some storylines may drop in the Friends for Change campaign in some capacity.  And with the ability for participants to vote on their favorite charity that receives part of a $1M donation from Disney, this campaign is sure to be a winner.

This had to be an easy decision for Disney, creating a campaign that leverages its star power talent, helps the environment, has an education message parents will love, drives online buzz and polishes the Disney halo of all things good to shine brighter than ever.  And it’s easy to see how this campaign can become an ongoing, community driven effort for years to come, helping new charities, teaching more environment tips and providing a “feel good” element to up-and-coming stars of Disney.

With this in mind, some things to think about for your next campaign.  An obvious ones, the power of celebrities to motivate the masses is alive and well.  Can your campaign include a way for people to connect online to help and change things, feel like part of a community?  Line up some solid media partners that can naturally be used to raise awareness and drive traffic to the campaign site.  Don’t forget a “show me the money” element by shifting dollars away from non-effective TV ads and into a conversation-driving, let-people-decide charity giveaway – some real big bucks that get people excited.

Hoping in the future Disney motivates participants (and their parents) to work in the offline world, like inviting people to clean up a identified park in specific cities or donating toys around Christmas and more.  Until then, welcome Disney to the world of giving and sharing and community, glad to see you using your power for good.

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Toyota Turns Up The Volume With “Rock The Space” http://blogs.hillandknowlton.com/ryanpeal/2009/05/25/toyota-turns-up-the-volume-with-%e2%80%9crock-the-space%e2%80%9d/ http://blogs.hillandknowlton.com/ryanpeal/2009/05/25/toyota-turns-up-the-volume-with-%e2%80%9crock-the-space%e2%80%9d/#comments Mon, 25 May 2009 01:12:17 +0000 Ryan Peal http://blogs.hillandknowlton.com/ryanpeal/?p=593 Providing a solid example of why MySpace still has a place in the marketing mix, Toyota unleashes “Rock The Space” – a competition for unsigned bands or solo singers to win fame and fortune in the form of a recording contract and massive exposure on MySpace.

The competition is pretty straight forward; bands submit an original MP3, design a demo tape on the site and submit their music.  In July MySpace Records will select five finalists and then members of MySpace will vote to select the winner.  In a nice twist, the finalists will be given an advertising budget to create and place banner ads on MySpace to help secure votes.  The winner will be announced in September and get premium placement on the MySpace Music Home Page.  The campaign complements Toyota’s ongoing effort on MySpace – “Toyota Tuesdays” – a day when the company gives away free downloads on its MySpace site.

I’m hoping/assuming Toyota has some street teams out and about raising awareness of the competition in bars and clubs where aspiring talent may be performing as well as malls and beaches and concerts where youth will naturally be out and about.  Outreach to music blogs and forums would also help drive awareness and traffic.

There also have been a number of artists that have been discovered on MySpace, including Colbie Caillat and Lily Allen.  It would have been great if Toyota was able to enlist the support of these gals or any of the other discovered talent to leverage in any media relations outreach – providing a credible ambassador for the campaign to highlight the reality of being discovered on MySpace.

Overall a good campaign to check out – simple, to the point, spot on with the audience and a solid incentive to motivate bands/artists hoping to make it big to start by rocking the space.

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Toyota Driving School For Teens http://blogs.hillandknowlton.com/ryanpeal/2009/04/30/toyota-teens/ http://blogs.hillandknowlton.com/ryanpeal/2009/04/30/toyota-teens/#comments Wed, 29 Apr 2009 21:13:17 +0000 Ryan Peal http://blogs.hillandknowlton.com/ryanpeal/?p=566 Back in the day I’m told they had student driving courses in high school, helping kids learn the rules of the road before they actually got out there to cause havoc.  Unfortunately due to budget cuts on multiple fronts most schools ditched their student driving programs a while ago.  Toyota, happily, has started to step in, introducing a teen driving program in Los Angeles (that hopefully will expand to other cities soon).  The effort positions Toyota with parents as a responsible company and with teens as a company that helps them get on the road faster with a Toyota/parent approved training program.

The program – Toyota Driving Expectations – is a four hour course held each month at the company’s California headquarters.  Both parents and teens participate in a combination of class lectures and behind the wheel activities.  The company focuses on defensive driving techniques (i.e., evasive lane maneuvers, dry/wet surface skidding, etc.), providing scenarios that hopefully most teens will never have to deal with, but ones that are hard to recreate on your own to practice.

Toyota brings in some of the big guns related to their multiple driving/racing sponsorships for some extra starpower/excitement.  And they provide a nice teen/parent driving contract that helps avoid some of the initial driving drama that normally comes up when teens hit the road.  And of course Toyota provides some amazing cars for the teens and parents to drive during the course – providing real-life opportunities for everyone to touch/feel/experience their amazing vehicles in a natural (non-sales focused) way.

The company has done a great job of providing a national element to the campaign, providing a “National Education Standards” program called the “Toyota Teen Driver” program.  Teachers can request to receive informational brochures with tips, worksheets, quizes and more.  While it doesn’t obviously bring the real-life and physical element to life it is a nice alternative.

I’m a big fan of this campaign mainly because Toyota identified a relevant, authentic need for an important audience segment (parents) and provided a real solution that doesn’t scream “and buy a Toyota” too.  Everyone sees how great the cars perform in challenging situations, reinforcing the positioning of the company as a safety-first organisation.  The limited availability of it makes those who attend feel extra special and ensures a “sold out” event every month.

A great example to consider when you are in need for a brand building (versus product) campaign that simply strives to help someone out in some way, give them something they really need or just make someone’s life a bit better.  If every company did more of this, just think how much better the world would be – and how bonded people would be to brands that first aim to help them out, knowing the “sales” part of the relationship will naturally come when the time is right.

And if you live in Los Angeles and have a teen driver, next week (May 4) is opening day to register for the next school.

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Nissan Slam Dunks On YouTube http://blogs.hillandknowlton.com/ryanpeal/2009/04/22/nissan-slam-dunks-on-youtube/ http://blogs.hillandknowlton.com/ryanpeal/2009/04/22/nissan-slam-dunks-on-youtube/#comments Wed, 22 Apr 2009 13:25:44 +0000 Ryan Peal http://blogs.hillandknowlton.com/ryanpeal/?p=568 Recently Nissan launched a campaign on YouTube centered around the universal love and wonderment of the Slam Dunk.  The campaign is connected to the launch of the new Nissan 370Z sports car.

The campaign is relatively simply – upload your own amazing slam dunk video and hope that some of the big gun slam dunk judges (including Toronto Raptor Chris Bosh and former player now commentator Jalen Rose – both huge dunk maniacs) pick you to be one of the 20 finalists.  If you make it to the final 20 then you’ll be asked to serve up another Slam Dunk that is captured on video and uploaded for another round of voting (via views of each video).

From just casual browsing I’ve always noticed lots of slam dunk videos – so lots of guys like to show-off and impress people with their slam dunk moves, so Nissan tapped an already known interest from their target audience (sports and showing off).  The “easiness” of the campaign also works, everyone that would consider a new Nissan sports car I’m guessing would know how to shoot and upload a video.  And because the rules say no added effects or edits then a simple shoot and upload factor ensures people aren’t scared of entering because they don’t know how to edit a video.

I’m guessing that the link between the new Nissan and a Slam Dunk has to be around both being fun to do or drive, powerful performances and more guys being in to sports cars and slam dunks.  It’s a bit of a stretch but I think the simplicity of the campaign and the overall fun factor of it more than makes up for the less than solid connection.

The only thing that I think I would have loved to have seen would have been for some way for someone to actually win a new Nissan.  The Grand Prize is a trip for 2 to some city to see an official slam dunk group (Team Flight Brothers) in action and to have the chance to be a flight brother for a day.  It’s a cool trip for people in to slam dunks but I’m sure they’d also love a car.  So would have loved to have seen some extra challenge that rewarded a new Nissan – like, for example, if any of the submitted slam dunk videos received 10,000,000 views (whoever did it first) would win a car.  This would encourage people to not only get a bit crazy with their slam dunks for maximum entertainment but more importantly would motivate participants to maximize their social networks to drive people to view their video.

The deadline to submit a slam dunk video is coming up (April 26) so you still have time if you are a secret slam dunk maniac.  Overall I think the campaign works – its easy for people to come play, the content is entertaining, the campaign overall is relatively inexpensive for Nissan and could see this as an annual event.  Go Nissan!

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