Andy's Answers: How Mattel used social media to build excitement around Hot Wheels' record-breaking stunt
By Andy Sernovitz on September 14th, 2011 | 174849 comments on this postAndy%26%23039%3Bs+Answers%3A+How+Mattel+used+social+media+to+build+excitement+around+Hot+Wheels%26%23039%3B+record-breaking+stunt2011-09-14+17%3A46%3A39Andy+Sernovitzhttp%3A%2F%2Fsmartblogs.com%2Fsocialmedia%2F%3Fp%3D17484
With 43 years of history, Mattel’s Hot Wheels brand has a huge following of passionate, loyal fans. But Mattel had a challenge many classic brands face: keeping the conversation fresh for longtime enthusiasts while adding new ones.
To jump-start this, Mattel’s Betsy Burkett and Gretchen de Castellane aimed big: a world-record-breaking stunt at the Indianapolis 500. The event featured heavy integration of social media, led to tons of buzz and created a culturally relevant moment for new and old Hot Wheels fans.
- Create great partnerships. Mattel had several outside partners for this event — including ABC, which broadcast the stunt. By leveraging media partners and the racing community — on top of its existing fan base — Mattel was able to reach a broader audience of new fans.
- A little mystery helps keep the excitement building. Leading up to the stunt, Mattel kept the identity of its stunt driver a secret. This element gave eager fans something to explore for months before the event, and it also gave Mattel something to unveil after the stunt.
- Point fans to a primary destination. With all of the conversations, content and platforms involved in something such as this, you need a home to which you can direct fans — not only to engage them now but also to be able to reach them again. For Mattel, Facebook was that destination, and the company used a “like-gating” strategy to convert visitors to fans.
Watch Burkett and de Castellane’s case study. Slides are available.
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