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Fiat helps Waze users find nearby relaxation spots to avoid traffic

Fiat is delivering mobile content to users of social mapping application Waze, which was recently acquired by Google, to help drivers find a place to take a break during heavy traffic.

Waze leverages social networking to offer reliable local traffic information while enabling drivers to build and use live maps and get turn-by-turn directions. The Fiat messages appear on the mobile screen of Waze users in Brazil during heavy traffic with tips about nearby restaurants, cafes, cinemas and local attractions where users can go to avoid the traffic.

?Fiat is a brand with the tradition of experimenting new formats, especially in technology,? said Michael Lent, managing director for Pereira & O?Dell Brazil, Sao Paulo. ?Waze is booming in Brazil and has been a fantastic ally in helping drivers finding better ways to avoid traffic in big cities.

?So the combination of technology and service to car drivers was the perfect ensemble,? he said. ?Fiat had to be there.

?This is a totally non-intrusive experience. More of a sponsored service, really. Fiat plots cafes, ice-cream parlours, bookstores and other nice and relaxing places right next to crowded driveways.?

Agency Pereira & O?Dell Brazil worked with Fiat on the campaign that launched on Aug. 12.

Drive here now
Waze has close to 50 million users in 190 countries. It was acquired in June by Google, who outbid Facebook and Apple and paid a reported $1.03 billion for the service, reflecting how crucial location data is in the mobile space.

For the Fiat campaign, the auto manufacturer is plotting nearby spots that appear as icons in the app. When users see the icons and tap on them, Fiat suggests taking a break from the traffic at the various spots.

For example, a user might see copy that reads: ?Traffic on fire? How about some ice cream?? or ?Traffic is making you sleepy? How about some coffee??

Suggestions come with a ?drive here now? button, so users can easily break away from traffic and find the spot of interest.

According to Fiat, this is the first marketing effort from a car manufacturer in Waze.

Quality content
The attraction for brands to Waze is the quality of its content for users. By associating themselves with the app and its content, brands hope to make a favorable impression on users.

?If we say generally that content is king, when it comes to mobile and brands, you have to think that context is king,? Mr. Lent said.

?Why is the user using their mobile device to access any content or service?? he said. ?What is their specific context while they do that?

?Have that in mind, and offer content and services that are relevant to that specific moment, and you will transform your brand in a great utility, connecting with your audience in the right way. ?

Final Take
Chantal Tode is associate editor on Mobile Marketer, New York