Facebook 'likes' fuel car

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Facebook fuel

Brazilian soft drink company uses Facebook to power cars driven to the Carnival festival
Brazilian soft drink company uses Facebook to power cars driven to the Carnival festival

The Offer: In a play to gain fans for popular Brazilian soft drink Guaraná Antarctica, Espalhe Guerrilla Marketing created a contest that gave participants the chance to win a trip — and VIP treatment — to Brazilian Carnival by posting clever wordplay and phrases on Guaraná's website. The catch? Winners then had to drive to the festival themselves — and to do so they were given a car that literally turned real-time Facebook engagement into fuel through an app on Guaraná's Facebook page connected to the car's inner workings. Without enough Facebook interaction, the ignition would not work.

The Data: The drivers needed to get 220,000 interactions via the app to make it from the starting point in São Paulo to the city of Salvador, a distance of nearly 2,000 kilometers. One “like” equaled 10 meters; a comment moved the car 20 meters. As of press time, the soft drink's Facebook page had 4.7 million “likes.” All participants ultimately made it to Salvador in time for Carnival.

The Channel: The interactive campaign was conducted exclusively through social media. Guaraná's Facebook page served as home-base for all campaign-related activity.

The Creative: A tablet connected to the car's dashboard displayed a counter that showed drivers exactly how much “like” fuel they'd earned versus the distance they still had to go. The winners got to hang out with Brazilian singer Claudia Leitte and members of the Brazilian soccer team.

The Verdict:

Stephen Malbon is CEO and founder of The Malbon Group, a content development and marketing company split into three divisions: BON, a creative agency; Frank151, a lifestyle brand; and The League, a creative community. The company has worked with Casio and HBO, among others. Read our Q&A with Stephen for more.

Creative in spirit? Check. Generating buzz for the brand and the campaign? Check. But the overall concept is confusing and lacking in climax. Too many components make this all over the map.

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