Art of Speed is the blog Nike is about to launch showcasing a series of 15 short films on the theme of speed. The New York Times (free reg.) dedicates an article to the fact, collecting both positive and negative opinions. Some are skeptical that online readers will be interested in reading an advertorial blog. I tend to agree with this opinion, but I also believe that contents’ quality will be the key point users will look at in choosing what to read or avoid.
German interactive agency Phase 4 has created a microsite for the Mini Challenge 2004. The Mini Challenge is a race competition which already took place in the Uk, Switzerland, Belgium and South Africa. The site is part of Mini Cooper’s marketing strategy aimed to reinforce the brand building a relationship with its customers and prospects.
“Mobile entertainment has reached the point of consumer validation – We know it’s a market. It’s delivering tangible results and returns.” Golden words by Paul Palmieri, director of business development for Verizon Wireless, quoted in an article on Wired. There’s excitement in the industry for the growing revenues deriving from wireless. The market is reaching a critical mass and new players are entering the arena, bringing content and experience from Europe and Asia. However, as the article points out, some potential growth is being inhibited by the way mobile content is sold.
Last week Wine Spectator announced a mobile service to provide users with wine informations anytime anywhere. As a logical consequence, the Food Network has decided to launch a similar service for recipes. You can’t drink a good wine without eating something. So Airborne Entertainment has developed “Cook Express”, a mobile application containing high-quality recipes and helpful tips from some of the Food Network’s most celebrated chefs. Beth Higbee, vice president of new media at Food Network commented:“Wireless allows us to go beyond TV and website to combine instant communication with truly useful content.”
Berlitz has launched a downloadable language guide for mobile phones- The idea is to help holidaymakers finding their way in foreign countries, providing them with translated travel phrases. Revolution Magazine explains that each phrasebook contains 150 common terms and costs around �3.00 to download, available in English, French, Spanish, German, Italian and Dutch.
Virgin Mobile has launched last week its “Best Hands” viral campaign, featuring a video clip that shows a swanky nightclub’s po-faced toilet attendant taking service levels to an extreme by literally providing hands-on service to the club’s privileged members� James Kydd, brand director for Virgin Mobile, said:“This seventh release in our successful series of online viral campaigns with DMC carries on our strategy of providing online viral users with exclusive, entertaining material in order to reinforce and continue to widen our brand awareness.”
Read more about the campaign on DMC’s website.
“Webisodes are a new frontier” it’s a sort of a follow back of an article published a couple of weeks ago about viral marketing. Webisodes are an emerging form of online advertising which tries to invest more in creativity, in order to entertain and engage users. Recent webisodes’ examples are the Close Shaves used to promote Schick Canada, or the Chicken created for Burger King and the American Express’ spot featuring Jerry Seinfeld and an animated Superman. Commenting the new trend in online advertising, Jeff Benjamin, interactive creative director at Crispin Porter + Bogusky said:“We had sort of lost focus on the content and the concepts behind the sites. Now I feel like we’re at the beginning of a Renaissance.”
Lufthansa is currently running an interactive advertising campaign to support its online booking system. The rich media ads, have been developed by Profero. On Brand Republic, Cara Grant, Lufthansa’s marketing communications manager commented:“It is a great time for us to build brand awareness and drive sales and online is a very effective method to achieve this.”
The upcoming movie Schrek 2 will be launched with an online campaign developed by Zed. As Revolution Magazine explains, the ads will be running through the MSN network, on the portal’s homepage and will be shown to age-targeted users on Hotmail.com.
Heineken gets ready for Euro 2004 with a special initiative in cooperation with MSN Messenger. The beer brand will deliver updated information about the matches directly through the instant messaging system. The campaign has been developed by QI Ideas, which explains that besides that Heineken gives away new Orange digigoods (emoticons, avatars) weekly and shows links to the best sites dedicated to the Dutch team. In this way Heineken makes sure all Messenger users are always on top of the latest soccer news.
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