News Update :

Does My Avatar Need a Night Out?

Friday, April 11, 2008

I’m bemused by the fact that I’m even asking that question—but it is Friday, after all! The avatar in question is the one I could create on the Burn Alter Ego application on Facebook. It’s a promotion for an energy drink that Coke is marketing in Europe. Like all these drinks, some of the contents, in addition to the huge jolt of caffeine and well-known ginsing, are a bit scary. However, the sleep-deprived young demographic has been consuming high-caffeine drinks for many years and no doubt will continue to do so.
The promotion is another Facebook app—does the parade ever end? Last week Media Post’s Cathy Taylor invited readers to sign up and give the application a workout. This week she reports that a fair number of people seem to have signed up to either participate or observe what happens. She’s soliciting comments and will write it up in her blog in a couple of weeks.

So here’s the application. You can create an avatar and send it to enjoy evenings out with other avatars and report back. Presumably you can meet some nice avatars that way. If you don’t want to play the game, there’s a video on the Facebook page that gives you a good sense of what it’s all about, and the video is worth looking at.

I’ve pointed out before that Coke has been experimenting in the social media space. One assumes that as they do so, they learn more about what works. The Burn Alter Ego isn’t my thing—but then I’m not part of the target market for the very-high-octane energy drinks. The young people who are the target market are also the ones who just might like to have a party avatar. I’d encourage you to keep an eye on this promotion and see where Coke goes with in, first in Europe and perhaps later in the US.
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