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Volkswagen First To Launch New Model Solely Via iPhone Application (And Some PR)


If you’re looking for marketing around Volkswagen’s new GTI car, you’ll only be able to find it on the iPhone. And of course, the slew of media coverage the brand has received for launching its latest model only on the iPhone.

Brian Williams, Group Vice President in the Consumer Marketing Practice at MWW Group leads the Volkswagen account. He told PRNewser that with the target audience for this campaign – 21 to 39 year olds – research showed the demographic is very close to their mobile devices. “They are rarely more than five feet away from their phone,” he said.

The concept of launching only via iPhone was put together by VW and their mobile agency, AKQA. They asked MWW, “would this stand as a successful launch and do we have a news story here,” to which the agency said yes. “No auto company has ever relied solely on a mobile app to launch,” Williams said.

As part of the campaign, consumers who play the racing game via the application will be entered to win one of six custom GTI’s. Each week VW will announce one award winner, which “helps keep PR alive,” said Williams. The six week campaign began with a launch event last week attended by 115 journalists, bloggers and online influencers. Since then, the application has been downloaded more than 700k times and is the number one free application on the App Store. “Media has embraced the idea of a mobile only strategy” Williams said.

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