Sony Ericsson Harness Social Media for UEFA 12th September, 2011

The 2010/11 UEFA Champions League final proved to be the event of the football season, featuring a showdown between two European giants, Manchester United and Barcelona. Having both won their domestic leagues earlier in the month, the game was undoubtedly the spectacle to be watched closely by millions around the world.

As the Official Mobile Handset Provider of the UEFA Champions League, Sony Ericsson chose to reach this engaged audience through the power of social media – specifically an innovative approach using Foursquare. Showcasing the capabilities of the Xperia mobile handset range, Sony Ericsson launched two promotions the day before the final.

The first saw fans build their own football team through Foursquare by finding a player in eleven locations around London, each revealing a prize on the inside of their jersey. Prizes included Sony Ericsson PLAY handsets, official UEFA merchandise and a pair of tickets to the 2011 UEFA Champions League final. The second promotion engaged fans attending the final to unlock the Sony Ericsson Xperia Footy Final Badge at the Sony Ericsson Football Hotspot located at Wembley Stadium, in an effort to win tickets to the UEFA Super Cup in Monaco, 2011.

With over 6 million fans on Facebook, Sony Ericsson not only knew their target audience, but created promotions that resonated with UEFA fans in a unique way.  Future plans will see a focus through their social networks throughout the 2011/12 UEFA Champions League season offering Facebook-exclusive competitions, new mobile applications, and further Foursquare promotions.

Stephan Croix, Head of Global Marketing Partnerships and Sponsorship at Sony Ericsson, informed Marketing Week that:

Social media will now become an additional investment in our Champions League sponsorship, we will dial up the volume to help build the brand and continue to drive commercial success.

Sony Ericsson is now the  40th biggest brand on Facebook providing regular engagement with the ever-changing mass mobile handset market.  This platform not only allows the brand to gain valuable insight into consumer trends and demands, but also continues to strengthen the brand further proving the importance of harnessing new media channels within sponsorship activations.