Fiat, Jones Soda Launch Joint New-Product Promotion


Sometimes serendipity brings marketers together in a partnership that makes great sense for both. That appears to be what has happened in a California-only linkup between Fiat and Jones Soda.

Fancying themselves on the cutting edge of American culture, the two brands were already talking, but when they discovered that Fiat was planning to roll out its new California-only 500e this spring at the same time that Jones was planning to launch distribution of its new Natural Jones Soda in California, a fated promotion took shape.

Thus, the newly announced “Jonesin’ for a Fiat 500e” summer-photo contest promotion featuring the new all-electric version of the Fiat 500 and the lighter-calorie, reduced-sugar line of new sodas introduced by one of the original boutique-soft-drink brands. They’ll be seeking submissions of photos of any Fiat 500 model via social media, partnering in sampling Natural Jones Soda and providing peeks at the 500e at California surfing events and other showcases, and even giving away Natural Jones to visitors to Fiat “studios” in the state.[more]

The grand-prize winner of the photo contest will receive surfing lessons, a Fiat 500 (or 500e if a California resident) and his or her winning photo on a run of Natural Jones Soda in 2014. Jones, of course, has long been known for running photos of its customers on its bottle labels.

“We had already been talking about working together because as we shared our brand stories, we saw a lot of synergy and were even using thre same word clouds to describe our brands,” Casey Hurbis, head of brand communications for Fiat North America, told brandchannel. “They do a fantastic job in social media, also, and we’re growing there.”

Then “lo and behold, we find out [Fiat] is launching a ‘healthier’ version of their iconic brand, and in California only, at the same time we were going to do that,” recalled Jennifer Cue, CEO of Seattle-based Jones Soda. “It was very serendipitous.”

“We’ve decided to focus our new product on one market as Fiat has, which is a logical way to launch a new product,” Cue told brandchannel. “Of course we chose California for reasons similar to Fiat as well: San Francisco is the biggest electric-vehicle market, and a lot of consumers are much more health-conscious” than other Americans.