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P&?s Tide interacts with consumers via mobile

Procter & Gamble?s Tide brand has launched Stain Brain, an application for iPhone and iPod touch that consumers can use to find and share ways to remove stains at home and on the go.

The free application lets consumers search for step-by-step cleaning instructions from the experts at Tide and other iPhone users to get answers before stains have a chance to set in. For those iPhone users who have a secret recipe for removing tough stains, Tide Stain Brain lets them instantly share their own tips and tricks within the application.

?We see Tide as the authority in stain removal, and we?ve had stain solutions on our Web site for some time, and we wanted to extend out of home to reach consumers,? said Amanda Treevy, Cincinnati, OH-based digital brand manager of Tide at P&G. "The iPhone application allowed us to do that, offering on-the-go tips at consumers? fingertips.

?We?re really looking at the iPhone as an extension of our stain-removal realm, not focusing on one demographic or another, but trying to make our brand more accessible,? she said. ?Anyone who?s looking to remove a stain can use the app and find out how to get it out.?

Tide is a laundry detergent brand on the market in North America and other countries that is manufactured by Procter & Gamble.

The Tide Stain Brain application was created by Publicis Groupe?s Digitas, Tide?s digital agency of record.

After downloading the free application, consumers can browse the top 20 stains, according to popularity. They can use search and filters to find stains by name or category.

Users of the application can retrieve the Tide stain solution, complete with on-the-go tips, fabric care notes and recommended Tide products.

They can also contribute stain solutions via their iPhone, all of which are readily available to other users.

Users can rate Tide's and other users' stain solutions and give feedback on how well they worked, as well as ask questions and connect with other community members.

The application lets users navigate to product pages to find additional information, store locators and other content.

The Tide Stain Brain application uses Get Satisfaction, a social-networking platform that fosters consumer-to-consumer problem solving and facilitates the sharing of information between customers and companies.

For Tide Stain Brain, the Get Satisfaction technology has been integrated to enable consumers to contribute their own stain solutions, rate others' stain remedies and share feedback with the community.

The Tide Stain Brain mobile application is available for iPhone and iPod touch in the iTunes App Store.

Ms. Treevy said that Tide is planning on expanding its mobile presence to other platforms as well.

?I am absolutely looking at expanding this more broadly beyond the iPhone realm, likely early next year,? Ms. Treevy said.

Tide is going to wait and see how the application spreads virally until the end of the year, then most likely begin a marketing push in early 2010 to promote it.

?As far as marketing this application, we see it as meeting this big consumer need, so we will seek out multiple touch points,? Ms. Treevy said. ?It depends on how it fits into our other communications, but it?s up there on the priority list.

?We?re trying to maximize awareness, so we may well do some online media buys, and eventually there could be some mobile banner ads as we explore other ways to expand our mobile piece,? she said.

?We will continue to bring this to life in other campaigns, because we see the application as a long-term resource for consumers, so we?ll integrate it into communications with upcoming initiatives.?