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« Fans creating ads to run on YouTube, an early example from Nokia Sports Tracker | Main | One billion served - says Flirtomatic of ads to user base of 100K »

May 22, 2008

Comments

Alan Moore

Tomi,

would not say it is a pyramid scheme, I would say its a smart way of building a community at grass roots, creating inentives, around reputation, authority and recognition.

Great post btw.

Alan

Voytek Siewierski

Cannot make up my mind between "Tyrant Habanero Burning Hell Hot", and the "Satan Jorquia Bazooka Deadly Hot"

david cushman

Great way of putting a brand into the hands of people likely to influence.
Any idea about its sales success (or otherwise). Market share it grabbed? etc

Christopher Billich

Important note: no one actually had to stay up all night to play. You scheduled your moves (as in which base to attack/defend during the next round) in advance, and then the system would spit out the results after.

Players were rewarded with more than 120 collectible wallpapers,for capturing bases, including some very hard to get ones that could only be obtained by players that met a number of objectives.

They actually did three installments of this game between October 2007 and April 2008. By the last installment, the game mechanics had become quite sophisticated, including training your soldier (on site, once a day max.) to boost his powers, rank not only depending on the number of people recruited, but also on battles fought/won etc.

It also featured an intricate system of gaining/losing "information points" by posting strategically relevant information to the own army's BBS and eavesdropping on the other side's conversations, which I thought was pretty cool. You could even defect to the other army if you saw things going downhill for your side.

Wish I had information on the actual campaign results - difficult to find!

Hi Voytek, DC and Christopher

Thanks guys, for stopping by.

Voytek - yeah, I HAVE to buy two bags of both of those snacks the next time I'm in Tokyo. I gotta try them for myself and make my choice. I'm not one for hot spicy snacks, so likely for me it the lesser of two evils. But like your sons, my nephews are big into gaming of course, so I also have to bring a pair of the snacks to Finland to my nephews (and nieces) to try, while I tell them of this "cool" story about Uncle Tomi's work, and gaming on mobile and snack foods in Japan. I can see the two brothers for example immediately picking opposite sides ha-ha..

David - nothing more yet, but am digging into it and having my "spies" ha-ha trying to find more info. One of them is our friend Christopher Billich here, who already gave us a bit more insights..

Christopher. I can't say how happy I am that you could give more info and corrections on this. I am totally in awe of this campaign, and so far all of those experts in mobile that I've shared the story with, have been very impressed by the campaign. Now I have real info much more beyond what was just on that short video clip.

And I'm sure you'll be including this case study in your next report on the Japanese mobile advertising industry, like the one for 2008 that you released - its a great report by the way, for all of our readers, go take a look at www.infinita.co.jp/research. These guys really know what they are writing about.

Thanks for writing

Tomi :-)

Jareth

Sadly, the blog echo chamber keeps repeating a katakana mistake.

I have seen this article and another one online showing said videoclip and I have to say that the clip was created/translated by someone guessing at katakana (a common occurrence that leads to many translation errors) and without any basic knowledge of popular hot peppers. The name is not Jorquia, but JOLOKIA. The official Tohato website even says in plain obvious romaji that the product uses the Bhut Jolokia peppers, which are hotter than even the (previously hottest known pepper) Red Savina Habanero peppers used in their regular Tohato Boukun Habanero chips.

Crazy ad campaign though and highly creative.

Ingrid

Japan's vending industry responds much quicker to changes in products than the U.S. I think such a campaign would be impossible in the U.S.

Tomi T Ahonen

Hi Jareth and Ingrid

Thank you for the comments, will respond to both individually

Jareth - sorry about the mistake in the translation, obviously not my translation, I only repeated what was in the other sources. I do not speak Japanese. I think the big point of the blog was not how spicy the snack is - jolokia spice - but that the campaign was truly an 'engagemnet marketing' campaign and very novel in asking fans to pick sides and form an army... But thanks for the correction.

Ingrid - I hear you, but these are not only vending machine sold snacks, you can buy them at the Seven-Eleven style of convenience stores and the main stream supermarkets etc. That is very similar to the experience in the USA, and the US market has seen lots of rapid changes to given brands in the fast-moving consumer goods segment, so this could very easily be done in the US. Like the long running 'war' between Miller and Miller Light beers, 'tastes great, or less filling' which used to be a big tradition in the Superbowl advertising breaks. (I don't know if this is still true as its years since I lived in the USA). But the idea to take two of your brands and pit them against each other is not revolutionary - the idea to have your fans then form an army to fight in a virtual game, that is truly innovative..

Thank you both for writing. I have to go remove those spam comments here that had appeared, sorry about those.

Tomi Ahonen :-)

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Jake

Does anyone know what the sales of the snacks were? How effective in selling these two new flavors was the mobile campaign?

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By the last installment, the game mechanics had become quite sophisticated, including training your soldier (on site, once a day max.) to boost his powers, rank not only depending on the number of people recruited, but also on battles fought/won etc.

It also featured an intricate system of gaining/losing "information points" by posting strategically relevant information to the own army's BBS and eavesdropping on the other side's conversations, which I thought was pretty cool. You could even defect to the other army if you saw things going downhill for your side.

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    Tomi Ahonen is a bestselling author whose twelve books on mobile have already been referenced in over 100 books by his peers. Rated the most influential expert in mobile by Forbes in December 2011, Tomi speaks regularly at conferences doing about 20 public speakerships annually. With over 250 public speaking engagements, Tomi been seen by a cumulative audience of over 100,000 people on all six inhabited continents. The former Nokia executive has run a consulting practise on digital convergence, interactive media, engagement marketing, high tech and next generation mobile. Tomi is currently based out of Hong Kong but supports Fortune 500 sized companies across the globe. His reference client list includes Axiata, Bank of America, BBC, BNP Paribas, China Mobile, Emap, Ericsson, Google, Hewlett-Packard, HSBC, IBM, Intel, LG, MTS, Nokia, NTT DoCoMo, Ogilvy, Orange, RIM, Sanomamedia, Telenor, TeliaSonera, Three, Tigo, Vodafone, etc. To see his full bio and his books, visit www.tomiahonen.com Tomi Ahonen lectures at Oxford University's short courses on next generation mobile and digital convergence. Follow him on Twitter as @tomiahonen. Tomi also has a Facebook and Linked In page under his own name. He is available for consulting, speaking engagements and as expert witness, please write to tomi (at) tomiahonen (dot) com

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