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ExxonMobil?s social campaign invites users to share extraordinary commute stories

ExxonMobil is looking to reward loyalists of its Mobil 1 brand through the expansion of its existing Our Normal Drives video series to the social media space.

The campaign, which had already been in place as a digital video series since May, is now debuting a component where individuals can upload a video of their daily commutes to the Mobil 1 Twitter and Facebook accounts. The campaign is targeted at those consumers whose daily commutes are exceptional, incentivizing them to participate through the inclusion of a monthly sweepstakes.

"An objective of effective marketing programs is to reach people, generate awareness and stimulate engagement," said Michael Becker, a managing partner at mCordis, San Francisco.

"Incentives, including sweepstakes and contests, are a proven and effective tool for cutting through the clutter to achieve all three of these objectives. The promise of a prize can reverse inertia and encourage people to take action."

Normal only in name
The campaign originally highlighted Mobil 1?s role in assisting the normal, quotidian procedures of otherwise extraordinary individuals pursuing their passions. Previous chapters featured professions as varied as a truck driver who pilots oversized loads across the country to a Nascar Track Services Coordinator and a Lamborghini customizer.

The new development in the Our Normal Drives campaign marks a push by ExxonMobil to organically expand its social reach. The sweepstakes is anchored by the hashtags #Mobil1Performance and #Sweepstakes, and by including them in their posts, consumers can enter themselves in a monthly sweepstakes to win Mobil 1 products.

Monthly prizes include 24 quarts of Mobil 1 motor oil for the first place winner and two pieces of Mobil 1 branded merchandise for the second place winner.

While the sweepstakes itself chooses its winners on a random basis, the campaign offers an opportunity for both Mobil 1 and participating consumers to organically grow their brands through producing compelling content that matches the tone and intent of previous iterations of Our Normal Drives.

Leveraging social for loyalists
This latest chapter in ExxonMobil?s digital strategy is indicative of its desire to both attract new customers and activate existing brand-loyal ones through loyalty programs.

Our Normal Drives is the latest in a crop of socially-generated sweepstakes that brands have been leveraging as of late. Recently, PepsiCo?s Brisk Iced Tea brand debuted a contest that asked participants to upload a 30-second video via Instagram in order to win a trip to ComplexCon, a California pop culture festival (see story).

Pizza Hut has taken a slightly more enthusiast-driven track in its usage of contests, parlaying the built-in competitiveness of fantasy football to provide the backdrop for a new promotion where players nominate the commissioners of their leagues for a variety of sports-themed prizes (see story).

With the popularity of mobile video surging ? especially of late ? marketers have been enthusiastically flocking to the space in response. The development of the medium has provided a flexible, compelling platform for brands to succinctly communicate their ethos and brand identity in a way that resonates with consumers.

?Mobile and loyalty go hand in hand,? said Jon Squire, CEO and founder of CardFree. ?Today's customer is on the move and the only constant to market and interact with them is via the mobile device.

?By making loyalty less about a punch card and more about an interactive and fun moment with the brand, you've embraced both the medium and the lifestyle.?