Blending its X-Men movie partnership with its major Australian Open Tennis sponsorship (via a campaign led by athlete ambassador Rafael Nadal) sees Kia leverage the current trend for blending multiple property sponsorships within unified activations.
The car brand’s campaign around the first tennis major of 2015 is built on the launch of its special edition Sorento inspired by Wolverine – the X-Car.
The unveiling of this all-new vehicle lies at the heart of Kia’s collaboration with Twentieth Century Fox Home Entertainment to promote both the DVD release of X-Men: Days of Future Past as well as the car company’s sponsorship of the Australian Open 2015.
The third part of the triple-play sees the campaign fronted by Kia’s ‘superhuman’ brand ambassador and multiple-grand slam winner Nadal.
Indeed, it was Nadal who unveiled the model at Melbourne Park a week before the tournament began (and the vehicle remains on show throughout the tennis major between 19 January to 1 February 2015 before heading off to various motor shows around the world).
At the unveiling Nadal also handed over a fleet of more than 100 Kia cars to Australian Open Tournament Director Craig Tiley to be used as courtesy and player/official vehicles.
Prior to the reveal, Kia invited fans of the X-Men films to guess which of the movies’ characters had inspired the car’s design through a competition on the Kia Motors Facebook page at http://bit.ly/KiaXmen.
Fans guessing correctly were entered into a prize draw to win a copy of the DVD.
Simultaneously, Kia released a video on its Facebook and YouTube channels featuring Nadal teaming up with the X-Men and battling the Sentinels (the robot enemy from the latest film) who are threatening the Australian Open 2015.
To save the first Grand Slam, the X-Men and Nadal are helped by a ‘Kia X-Car’.
The spot has now passed 4.5 million YouTube Views.
As well as Nadal himself,
Kia is also taking several star players, such as new Australian star Thanasi Kokkinakis, out for a drive in the new model and asking them questions posed by fans themselves.
Other activation strands include a ‘Making Of The Kia X-Car’ video,
as well as a ‘JoinThe Kia Greatest Fan And Be The Next X-Men’ element which challenged fans to show their support for their favourite player and their passion for tennis by submit a photo/video of a best cheering outfit/moment via Facebook.
Lucky participants will receive a ‘goPro’ HD personal camera.
This is certainly a fascinating case study in merging partnerships into unified campaigns, but quite how neat a fit the X-Men is with the Australian Open remains to be seen.
Is the current sponsorship blending trend primarily driven by boosting power and reach through double-play activations, or is it more driven by simple 2-for-the-price-of-1 activation economics?
As for the X-Car itself, the work seems somewhat disconnected from the earlier campaign for the all-new Kia Sorento which rolled out in late 2014 and launched with a campaign led by a global TV spot.
Kia X-Car Website
Kia Australian Open Website
Kia X-Car Twitter
Kia Motors Worldwide
Australian Open Website
Australian Open TV YouTube
Australia Open Twitter
Fox’s Digital HD site: