Vodafone unveils new global brand engagement strategy

Vodafone has announced a new global brand engagement strategy that sees it shift away from badging major global events through sponsorships to celebrating individuals’ achievements.


Vodafone First majors on examples of people doing “remarkable things for the first time”. The strategy will take three tiers: “global Firsts”, “local Firsts” and “personal Firsts”.

The first activation will take place in London on New Year’s Eve. Working in partnership with the Mayor of London and food scientists Bompas & Parr, Vodafone will create what it claims is the world’s first multi-sensory fireworks display, allowing revellers to taste and smell fruity flavours emitted from the fireworks.

Those not attending the event will be able to experience it via an augmented reality app, which Vodafone says will add to the experience of watching the display on TV.

Other upcoming Firsts include enabling an “iconic sportswoman” to help the world’s most vulnerable women, funding a leading musician to create his first recording with sounds sourced from remote locations, conducting an orchestra in a “revolutionary way” and allowing a professional surfer to achieve a lifetime’s ambition.

The mobile operator says the social media-led “Vodafone Firsts” strategy will allow it a “much deeper and direct” interaction with its 400 million customers worldwide.

The launch of Vodafone Firsts comes nine months after Vodafone announced it would end its seven-year deal with Formula One team McLaren in favour of shifting all sponsorship activity to supporting local events. The company continues to sponsor London Fashion Week, which takes place in September each year.

Vodafone Group brand director Barbara Haase says: “Firsts represents a radical break with almost a quarter of a century of Vodafone-branded badged sponsorship. The concept is simple: we know that our technology can enable and inspire people to do something amazing for the first time, from making their first call to sharing their first video.

“Firsts is designed to reflect that sense of empowerment and excitement by using our technology and connectivity to enable a diverse range of people to achieve their remarkable ambitions.”

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