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Heineken activates multichannel summer campaign with mobile sweepstakes

Beer giant Heineken is activating its multichannel ?Plug Into Summer? campaign with a mobile sweepstakes in partnership with Universal Music Group and Fender Musical Instruments Corp.

Heineken has placed SMS calls-to-action and Scanbuy?s ScanLife 2D bar codes on all packaging for Heineken and Heineken Light, including six-packs, 12-packs and cases, across the United States for the summer season. Consumers who participate in the sweepstakes by texting in or scanning a 2D bar code can win a free application or music downloads, t-shirts and Fender guitars.

?Heineken has always been one of the most innovative beer companies and our consumers are early adopters of new technology,? said Afdhel Aziz, White Plains, NY-based director of public relations and brand activations at Heineken. ?We wanted to provide them with an extra layer of discovery and surprise to our big summer program by rewarding them with a cool music application.

?The target demographic of the mobile initiatives is early-adopters in their twenties who are tech-savvy and interested in new technology,? he said. ?Our partners in Plug Into Summer are Universal Music Group, who have a range of great artists across our main target audiences?general market, African American and Hispanic?and Fender guitars, who are very aspirational for our consumers.

?They both help reinforce Heineken?s premium and progressive positioning in music.?

Last June, Heineken targeted young adults in Brazil who display an active, dynamic, urban lifestyle with a free application for the iPhone and iPod touch (see story).

The following month, the beer brand targeted a young Hispanic demographic via mobile as part of its "Bajo Cero" campaign (see story).

SMS and 2D bar codes impress
The on-pack Plug Into Summer SMS call-to-action reads ?Open a Heineken to get the hottest music rewards? and asks consumers to text the under-the-cap numeric code to the short code 47336 (GREEN) to redeem exclusive music rewards.

As part of the Plug Into Summer program, consumers can win exclusive music downloads from artists such as Kid Cudi, the Cold War Kids, Wale and the Hold Steady. They can also win Fender guitars and limited-edition merchandise such as t-shirts.

Underneath the on-pack 2D bar code, which is powered by Scanbuy, the call-to-action asks consumers to text the keyword SCAN to the short code 43588 or go to to download the 2D bar code reader application.

Once they have downloaded the ScanLife application, consumers who snap a photo of the on-pack 2D bar code.

The code links to a mobile site where consumers can download one of three free Heineken applications, Music Challenge and Know The Signs for iPhone and Taxi Magic for iPhone, Android or BlackBerry.

?The Heineken Music Challenge is compatible with the iPhone, the mobile operating system with the highest penetration in the apps market,? Mr. Aziz said. ?The Music Challenge game works with the content on your phone to create a personalized trivia game.?

Know The Signs is a sobriety test, while Taxi Magic helps application users find a taxi.

This campaign is an example of how mobile helps connects the physical and virtual worlds to tie a multichannel marketing campaign together and drive consumer engagement.

?We sometimes forget about the importance of packaging, but it is really the most critical media for most brands,? said Jonathan Bulkeley, CEO of Scanbuy, New York.

Mr. Bulkeley said that ScanLife has an installed base of about 25 million worldwide, which comes from both downloads on all different operating systems and pre-installed devices.

In the United States the application is being preloaded by Sprint on most new camera phones.

?ScanLife integration with packaging gives the consumer added value right from the product which they are already engaged with,? Mr. Bulkeley said.

?In this case, 2D codes link to free apps from Heineken, which either entertain with music trivia or provide an easy way to find a taxi when you need one,? he said.