With the practice of text messaging showing no signs of slowing down, LG Electronics wanted to further capitalize on the use of this highly popular activity among the youth segment.
Enlisting the help of Ogilvy Public Relations Worldwide, its AOR, the company launched an effort aimed at 18- to 34-year-olds that was designed to increase brand awareness and drive sales.
LG and Ogilvy decided they would reward people for their texting abilities and launched the LG National Texting Championship. James Williams, EVP at Ogilvy PR Los Angeles, says the goal of the contest was to "drive brand awareness and purchase intent through media coverage for LG and the new enV by LG handset," which LG is positioning as ideal for text messaging because of its QWERTY keypad.
LG positioned the competition as the first national event of its kind in the US in hopes of generating interest from the media. LG sent reporters media packages including foam thumbs (similar to foam fingers), LG headbands, and LG wristbands. Images of the stage were also sent to key media before the events. It also targeted select national media bookers with enV by LG handsets.
Morgan Pozgar, a 13-year-old girl from Pennsylvania, won the event. "It's too soon to know if it boosted sales," says Melissa Elkins, LG senior manager of PR. "We recently heard from the [LG] Verizon Team that they're hearing a ton of buzz about this event in the field." The effort generated 645 media hits, a total of more than 58 million media impressions, and $2.3 million in PR value.
LG and Ogilvy say they will continue to leverage the newsworthiness of the campaign to secure additional placements in text-messaging trend stories.
PR team: LG Electronics MobileComm USA (San Diego) and Ogilvy Public Relations Worldwide (Los Angeles)
Campaign: The LG National Texting Championship
Duration: March 15 to May 15, 2007
Budget: $60,000 (PR only)