Mercedes-Benz USA Tweet Race Gets Set

To all our MARKIT Group fans, friends, and customers,
We were recently forwarded this article, and wanted to post it here to share with you all. It’s a fantastic idea put forward by Mercedes-Benz USA that will both empower their brand and further a number of important charities in the U.S. The underlying support and marketing visibility will come from the company’s implementation of social media in all stages of this innovative competition, particularly Twitter.
The results of the upcoming Mercedes-Benz long-distance social media driving competition will be revealed in commercial segments during next month’s Super Bowl – here’s a sneak peek of who will be driving, who will be managing each team, and what each team will strive to accomplish in order to win a brand new 2010 C-Class Coup. Bet you didn’t know Serena Williams and the founding member of Run D.M.C. are getting involved, did you?
Read on to find out more about who will be involved. Pick a team to cheer on, and be entered to win a prize of your own. Three cheers for a great marketing idea -we can’t wait to see the results next month!

Mercedes-Benz USA Creates Twitter-Inspired Race for First Super Bowl Ad Campaign

January 18, 2011 | MONTVALE, N.J.
By Auto Remarketing Staff
Since Mercedes-Benz USA decided to advertise during next month’s Super Bowl — embarking on a campaign in connection with the big game for the first time — the automaker is doing more than just rolling out a 30-second TV spot.
The company explained its Super Bowl initiative harnesses Twitter activity to power four competing race teams to football’s biggest showdown. The Twitter-fueled campaign is geared to put four two-person driving teams behind the wheels of specially equipped 2011 Mercedes-Benz vehicles — each starting separately from Chicago, Los Angeles and New York and Tampa, Fla. — on Feb. 2 and converging on Feb. 4 at Cowboys Stadium outside Dallas.
Competing for a pair of all-new 2012 C-Class Coupes, the automaker stated teams will have the help of Twitter–savvy celebrities, who, in the role of Team Coach, will rally online support for their assigned teams and raise money for charity in the process.
Out of a field of nearly 2,000 candidates who applied for the Tweet Race through the Mercedes-Benz USA Facebook Page, four drivers — each riding with a co-driver of their choosing — were selected based on a combination of social-media prowess, personality and other intangibles that promise to make the race engaging and entertaining to followers.
In a random drawing, each driving team was then assigned a city to start from and a Mercedes-Benz vehicle to match.
The official Mercedes-Benz Tweet Race Teams include:
Driving Team: TV personality Layla Kayleigh, of Studio City, Calif., brings a unique energy to every show she hosts. Her co-driver is frequent on-camera emcee Julissa Bermudez from Los Angeles.
Team Coach: Founding member of legendary hip-hop group Run-D.M.C. and Rock & Roll Hall of Fame inductee Rev Run. Run is supporting the Lower Eastside Service Center, which provides safe and structured residential environments for New Yorkers living with opioid dependency.
Team Vehicle: 2011 Mercedes-Benz CL550 4MATIC Coupe
Team Starting Point: New York.
Driving Team: Creative technologist Len Kendall is a prolific Tweeter on the oddities and wonders of the Internet. His co-driver is pal and “renaissance man” John Morrison. Both are from Chicago.
Team Coach: New York Yankees outfielder, All-Star and World Series champion Nick Swisher. His involvement benefits “Swish’s Wishes,” a charity that enriches lives and lifts the spirits of children with vital health issues, while providing care, comfort and support during difficult times.
Team Vehicle: 2011 Mercedes-Benz E550 Cabriolet
Team Starting Point: Tampa, Fla.
Driving Team: Jennifer Marshall and co-driver Meredith Sinclair each care for two kids, a dog and a husband while Tweeting about the everyday challenges of raising good boys in a complex world. They are from Wilmette, Ill.
Team Coach: Serena Williams, a 13-time Grand Slam Singles champion and two-time Olympic Gold medalist. Williams is participating on behalf of The Serena Williams Foundation, which assists U.S. youth affected by violent crimes and helps provide quality educations to underprivileged high-school students.
Team Vehicle: 2011 Mercedes-Benz GL350 BlueTEC Clean Diesel SUV
Team Starting Point: Chicago.
Driving Team: Wisconsin residents Todd Sanders and co-driver John Pederson met through Twitter and quickly developed a close friendship. Now, the two Green Bay Packers fans are headed to their first Super Bowl as a team.
Team Coach: Chicago-bred bassist and Black Cards frontman Pete Wentz. Wentz’s involvement benefits St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital, one of the world’s premier pediatric cancer centers dedicated to finding cures and saving children with cancer and other catastrophic diseases.
Team Vehicle: 2011 Mercedes-Benz S400 HYBRID Sedan.
Team Starting Point: Los Angeles.
How the Race is Won
Mercedes-Benz USA indicated that since each team’s progress is “fueled” by Twitter activity during the race, members of these four driving teams intend to spend the next three weeks mobilizing their Twitter followings, adding more to their ranks and urging people to join their team on the Mercedes-Benz USA Facebook Page. The automaker’s Facebook site includes a special section through which people can learn about Tweet Race teams, pick a team to support, and ultimately follow the race in real time.
Supporters who officially join a team before the race begins can automatically be entered to win a VIP trip for two to the Mercedes-Benz sponsored event of their choice — 2011 U.S. Open, Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week in September or the 2011 PGA Championship — if their team wins.
Once the race starts on Feb. 2, the company stated the driving teams will depart from their respective locations and attempt to generate as much Twitter activity, or Tweet Fuel, as possible for their journey to Dallas. Over a three-day period, they will earn points not only for collecting Tweet Fuel, but for their performance on a series of social media-related challenges they will face along the way.
Mercedes-Benz USA said the team that reaches the Finish Line with the highest total score will be declared the winner, and the driver and co-driver will each receive an all-new 2012 C-Class Coupe, which will debut later this year.
“We’ve begun amping up our efforts in the social media space to start some new conversation with the brand,” stressed Steve Cannon, vice president of marketing for MBUSA.
“Over the next few years a series of new and very unique vehicles will join the Mercedes-Benz family, and the social media interaction we’re building will be an important foundation,” Cannon went on to say. “When we made the decision to utilize the Super Bowl to set the stage for these new models, we decided to go beyond simply showcasing the brand to actually creating dialogue, experiences and interaction
“We think the combination of our advertising and the Twitter Race will create the type of ‘living’ advertisement that engages people in new ways,” Cannon concluded.
Read more: Auto Remarketing | Mercedes-Benz USA Creates Twitter-Inspired Race for First Super Bowl Ad Campaign

About MARKIT Group

MARKIT Group is a full-service traditional and digital marketing and public relations firm with an emphasis on social media, reputation management and monitoring, as well as brand management. Headquartered in Bonita Springs, Fla., with offices in New York, Pittsburgh and Charleston, S.C.
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