Wireless Watch for May 14, 2004

Coke Sweepstakes Disguises Mobile Devices as Cans

“You can win, but you can’t hide.”

That’s the tagline of a new Coca-Cola sweepstakes promotion that uses a combo GPS/cellular device disguised as a can of Coca-Cola Classic to identify winners and deliver prizes. About 120 of the imposter cans were made, according to USA Today, and people who find them must carry the can with them to be located by Coke “Search Teams,” who then deliver prizes, including an SUV, at unexpected moments. The effort is called “Unexpected Summer.”

Enpocket’s Push for Opt-in Holder Identification

Enpocket issued a call for mobile marketers to include in every outgoing message the identity of the original opt-in permission holder. The mobile marketing company, which has long applied such marketing transparency as a matter of policy, said permission holder identification is as important to gaining acceptance as opt-in and ease of opting out.

“What happens is people forget they’ve opted in, or don’t know who they’ve opted in to receive messages from,” said Jonathan Linner. “Opt-in, opt-out and delivery of value to the consumer are prerequisites for successful mobile marketing, but original permission holder identification in each message is also critical to consumer acceptance.”

Linner said he wants to help protect cell phone communications from the fate that befell email, but he acknowledged that even if legitimate wireless advertisers agree to self-identify in each message, unethical marketers will still have the capability to destroy the medium.

Portable Games to Double in Five Years

By 2009 the portable gaming audience will grow to 43 million, almost twice its current number, Jupiter Research analysts found.

In a new report, Jupiter identifies and sizes up the gaming audience and elaborates on the factors determining success for portable game developers. The report also identifies a new gaming class, composed of people who play games on their phones more than five hours per week.

Gaming companies such as Electronic Arts have signaled an interest in increasing the presence of paid advertisements and brand placements within some of their games. Should this hope become a reality, It’s not hard to envision a place for brands in the portable gaming environment, as well.

Jupiter Research is a division of this publication’s parent company.

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