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Virgin America exec boasts 92pc coupon redemption rate for location-based mobile campaign

NEW YORK ? Executives from Virgin America and NBC Universal?s Bravo shared case studies of successful location-based mobile marketing campaigns during presentations at ad:tech.

Virgin America recently announced that it will serve San Jose del Cabo International Airport and Cancun International Airport with nonstop flights from California starting this winter. To promote the new route, the airline launched a three-day fare sale and a promotion on Loopt Star, the location-based social mapping network.

?Check-ins are not always the most accurate indication of the success of a campaign,? said Alice Lankester, vice president of marketing at Loopt, San Francisco. ?Virgin America had perishable inventory, and the airline got not only the direct response of consumers getting coupons, but also the brand value.

?We?re all very focused on metrics, but it is equally important to look at the brand response,? she said.

Yo quiero tacos
To celebrate the new routes from San Francisco International Airport and Los Angeles International Airport to the two Mexican airports, Virgin America launched a three-day fare sale.

In addition, the airline targeted tech-forward flyers in need of a Mexican getaway by offering two-for-one tickets by checking in on the Loopt Star iPhone application at SFO, LAX or select taco trucks in San Francisco and Los Angeles from 11:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. on Aug. 31.

Consumers checking in at one of the taco trucks also got a $1 two-for-one taco deal.

Proceeds from every taco purchased benefited the City of San Francisco?s Animal Care and Control Chihuahua rescue efforts.

?It was great partnering with Loopt?we tend to operate on quick turnaround times, and they were able to get the campaign up and running quickly,? said Jill Fletcher, social media and communications manager at Virgin America, San Francisco. ?We drove more than 1,400 check-ins in one day, and we achieved 92 percent redemption rates on the two-for-one tickets to Mexico.

?More than 1,300 people turned out for the deal in San Francisco alone?we sold 17 full planes worth of tickets during only a three-hour sale,? she said. ?We got extensive media coverage, and it was the fifth-highest revenue day ever for Virgin America.

?It was our first experience in the location-based marketing space, and we?re looking to do more going forward.?

Bravo, foursquare
The Bravo cable television network has been engaging its viewership by partnering with mobile social network Foursquare.

The network has a dedicated Bravo TV portal on Foursquare, which carries the following message promoting its iPhone application:

?Bravo fans do more than sit on their couches and watch Housewives yell at each other all day (shocking, right?). They eat where Top Chefs eat (and cook), they shop where the Housewives shop, they drink, er, responsibly (and most likely with Andy Cohen), and they Foursquare!

?Download Guides by Bravo to get Bravolebrities' picks for the best restaurants, bars, and stores in your city, then start earning your Bravo badges! We didn't ask Team Zoe, but we hear badges are always in style.?

Bravo offered Foursquare on-air TV spots in exchange for running a promotion offering 10 prize packages for Foursquare users who were ?Bravo newbies.?

Of the 10 people who opened the badges to win a prize, five of them were bloggers, and all 10 spread the word via Facebook and Twitter.

?The promotion had a wonderful virality?we promoted it to our Bravo crazies on air, and when we told them they could unlock badges of the shows they love, people went crazy about it,? said Ellen Stone, senior vice president of marketing Bravo, New York. ?Foursqure knew when Bravo?s promos went up because they felt it on their servers.

?We followed that up with a Top Shelf Just Desserts promotion, with three mobile trucks in three markets that tweeted about their location and our fans could check in via Foursquare to get free desserts or money off their next purchase of Godiva,? she said. ?Foursquare is letting people touch the content on a more personal level, we built a more personal connection with our viewers, and when you added all of the other social media tools, it was a big win.

?Foursquare is fantastic, but to get broader reach, we learned we needed to leverage several social media properties.?

Final Take

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