Volvo Goes To Pinterest For Road Trip

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Volvo Cars of North America is aiming for the nexus of design and lifestyle with a new social-media campaign on Pinterest to get people to look at the new Volvo S60 T5 AWD, and vie for a chance to take a road trip. The campaign, "Volvo Joyride," the company's first social media program. 

The program, which runs through the 26th of the month, encourages users to create a Pinboard called "Volvo Joyride" on which they can pin the Volvo S60 T5 AWD and elements of their fantasy road trip, including things like the destination, places to stop, attractions, outfits one might bring along, songs to listen to, and whatever else -- within reason -- would constitute the perfect road trip. 

Three winners, those who get the most re-pins, will get to actually do their trip, getting a four-day lease of the S60 T5 AWD, a two-night stay at a hotel in their chosen destination city, a $250 gas gift card, a $250 gift card for food and beverage, a $250 clothing retailer gift card, and a $50 music gift card.

Joseph Barbagallo, social media manager for the Rockleigh, N.J.-based North American unit of the company, tells Marketing Daily that Volvo's relatively new social media team says the visual focus of sites like Pinterest and Instagram -- in which Volvo is also involved -- felt right for the brand. "It's a huge platform right now for a lot of brands, and I see them tending to do similar things, posting product and focusing on that," he says. "But with Volvo being a lifestyle brand, we saw an opportunity to use that to focus on the design of a new vehicle."

"We looked at Pinterest as having a unique, very design-focused audience, so it's a great activation; it's an opportunity for us to carve a voice and niche," he says. Volvo is partnering for the program with design influencer Victoria Smith, who writes design blog SF Girl by Bay (SFGirlbyBay.com). She stars in a video about the promotion on Volvo's YouTube site and the Pinterest site in which she takes her own road trip with a friend to Lake Tahoe, describing what music she likes, outfits, and waypoints for the four-hour trip. 

Barbagallo says Volvo also has a strong social-media fan base already on several of the usual social-media suspects, "so we are looking at activating on those channels and bringing those fans from sites like Facebook and Twitter onto Pinterest. Volvo has lots of consumers who take road trips, so it's a natural with what people are already doing. This lets us put products in their hands."  

The company will base ROI on things like traffic referrals to its Web site. "It's a watch-and-learn scenario," says Barbagallo, adding that the company did a soft launch on Pinterest that started with 155 followers. Now that the number is up to over 500, the goal is to get volume through re-pins. "We want to spread the message, so we'll look at re-pins, views on Victoria's video site, and brand chatter afterward.”

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