Hey everybody. Starbucks is doing some SMS marketing. Which has everyone saying that SMS is now catching on here in the States. Which could be true but I don't think Starbucks is the cataclysmic sign of all marketing truths! Especially since I went into nine Starbucks today in New York city (which is not hard to do, there is one of every other block right next to an Irish pub and a pizza parlor) ... none of which advertised for this SMS Starbucks Summer pursuit and none of the employees knew what the hell I was talking about (but agreed it sounded pretty cool). Maybe the table cards have not yet been delivered. We shall see. For now all of this depends how many people visit the Starbucks website (which I do everyday).
Anyways, though, to be fair Starbuck's campaign does seem pretty damn innovative and nifty. The Strarbucks Summer Pursuit is a fun text messaging trivia game and the first mobile phone game that can recognize a picture of the answer as well as text - their techies are calling it intelligent image recognition. Mr Pondering Primate would call it world connection and Mr Neven of Neven Vision would call it a "visual google" and shout "hey we thought of that first!"
Each week Sratbucks will text you three summer themed clues and you can text or send a picture of your answer back to us. Rack up the answers and you'll be eligible for a chance to play the Ultimate Scavenger Hunt in NYC and compete for an amazing trip to Costa Rica!
Its not so much the image recognition then the idea of a scavenger hunt that impresses me the most. Of course, the image recognition makes the scavenger hunt that much more easier to do but still.... a scavenger is the perfect kind of thing for a mobile marketing scheme to tap on a ubiquitous level.
So let the hunt begin! Text "Summer" to 66268 to start playing! I know I will. And perhaps we can share our image recognition stories on the beaches of Costa Rica.