NORWALK, CT: Smirnoff has launched its global Nightlife Exchange Project for the second year in a row, but this time, the vodka company teamed up with Madonna.
Last year, the Project, which focuses on finding the best nightlife stories in order to create unique night-out events around the world, was in 14 countries. It is now in 50, including the US, Argentina, New Zealand, India, Great Britain, South Korea, and more.
In her partnership with Smirnoff, Madonna will be looking for the best dancer to join her next tour. Consumers can send in their 60-second video auditions on the Smirnoff Facebook page, website, and YouTube channel. Finalists will be flown out to one of the 50 participating countries to perform and meet the iconic superstar.
Splendid Communications, Smirnoff's global AOR, has been driving awareness of the integrated campaign through a variety of channels.
“The Nightlife Exchange Project is a big endeavor, so we really try to keep it as globally relevant as possible,” said Angie Newman, spokeswoman for Splendid. “The strategy for this year, since there are so many more countries involved, was to collectively pre-brief top-tier press around the world to ensure we had coverage. On a local level, all of our counterparts and sister agencies did follow-up work.”
In order to directly engage with consumers and fans, the Project has a social media calendar where people can check events and deadlines regarding the initiative. Smirnoff also worked with live-event and ticket company Live Nation on Madonna's social media networks to help get the word out, Newman added.
Like last year, people from all over the world are encouraged to “exchange” their best nightlife stories on Smirnoff's digital channels in order to help the company develop “extraordinary experiences,” said Michelle Klein, VP of global marketing at Smirnoff.
“What was powerful for us was the size of our community – not only with people who are buying our product, but with people who are celebrating and talking to us through social media,” she added.
Klein believes the use of social platforms, such as Facebook and YouTube, is an integral part of the Project because it's a borderless space where people from all different countries can interact and share ideas.
Aside from Splendid's team of 12 people in Australia, the US, and the UK, Smirnoff is also getting help from many local PR agencies in order to engage with consumers on a more community-relevant level. Yesterday, the company held an event in Ireland where Dublin residents were encouraged to dance in the streets.
Internally at Smirnoff, more than 200 people are working on the Project, focusing on brand elements, communications, digital features, and more.
Klein said the success of the Nightlife Exchange Project will be largely based on consumer participation, as well as engagement and brand awareness.