Having launched a social media game last year that put players in the role of a product marketer, Reckitt Benckiser has come back with another venture to raise awareness among recent college graduates and early career professionals.
"Last year, we were quite successful," Claudia Bach, marketing and PR manager for Reckitt Benckiser, tells Marketing Daily. "This year, we realized we have to go even broader to increase awareness."
The game, "UrbAN THRILL" (the lower case r and b are a reminder of the company name), is an online free runner-themed game, in which participants complete challenges in urban and rural locations across nine international settings including the U.S., Brazil, Australia, India, Russia, Germany, and France. The goal is for the runners to collect Reckitt Benckiser-branded kites placed around those areas in difficult-to-reach places.
The U.K.-based company, which has U.S. headquarters in Parsippany, N.J., is the parent for brands such as Lysol, Clearasil, French's and Frank's Red Hot Sauce. Although the brands are well known, the company is not -- which is why it is using online gaming as a recruiting tool, says Bach. To that end, the game uses brand logos and links to showcase the parent company's connection to the players' everyday lives.
"If you look at the [portfolio of] brands, they're very well known. The problem is no one knows the company behind them," she says. "For us, it's important that people begin exploring what we are as a company and what it represents to them."
Reckitt Benckiser is promoting the game through social media seeding, targeting relevant gaming portals, news groups and communities. The company is also offering players a flight for two to one of the nine destinations and more than $3,000 in spending money, if they register and leave their scores on the leaderboards.
Like last year's effort, the game is designed to be shared among social networks and friends, whose influence can be important when young professionals are seeking careers. "We had to make sure they were fun and easy to share," Bach says.