Vodafone in F1 promotion

Vodafone is promoting its GPS and 3G network via an online fantasy racing game as part of its sponsorship of the McLaren Mercedes Formula 1 team.

Lewis Hamilton

The Taxi Grand Prix, which runs until late August alongside the next five Formula 1 races, follows ten UK taxi drivers in real time as they race to complete the same number of miles as the Grand Prix drivers.

The campaign, developed by digital agency Dare and media agency Carat, showcases the operator’s strength in communications as it relies on its location-based services and 3G network capability.

Entrants are directed to pick two Vodafone McLaren Mercedes-sponsored taxi drivers from a pool of ten in five UK cities. Whichever team matches the race distance first over the course of their working week wins.

Entrants can keep track of how their taxi drivers are performing via real-time mapping, performance graphs and Twitter updates.

Vodafone began its sponsorship of the McLaren Mercedes team in 2007 in a deal believed to be worth £22m a year, to take advantage of the global TV audience. As well as benefiting from increased brand awareness, the operator is keen to align with an innovative, technical sport.

In 2005 Monopoly won an IPA Effectiveness Award for a similar initiative, Monopoly Live, which equipped London black cabs with GPS transmitters to turn the capital into a giant board game. That campaign was developed by digital marketing agency Tribal DDB.

This story first appeared on newmediaage.co.uk

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