SXSWi Video: Southwest Contest Gets Attendees Sprinting

Austin, Texas — Dozens of marketing and tech pros stampeded across Trinity, Bravos, and San Jacinto Streets here on a windy Sunday, some dodging traffic in a devil-may-care run towards free roundtrip plane tickets from Southwest Airlines. The contest participants were charged with being one of the first ten people to arrive in Loopt’s dedicated parking lot space to get the reward. Upon arrival, the sprinters huffed and puffed, as they thumbed around on their smartphones and checked into the Loopt app.

Ten lucky winners got their free tickets and cheered loudly in an unusual scene that had young Hollywood star Michael Sera momentarily taking notice as he walked by. If Sera thought the whole thing was a little over the top, he was probably right.

But Southwest’s promotion underscored a brand that’s been willing to take creative chances with social media during the last 15 months or so.

In the below video, ClickZ speaks with Southwest’s Alice Wilson, associate social media manager, and Brooks Thomas, spokesperson. We also check in with one of the winners of the geo-social spectacle:

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