Camp Jeep: Chrysler woos young with music

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Amid rugged off-road instruction and tamer container-gardening lessons, attendees at Chrysler Group's annual Camp Jeep will get something new. For the first time since the three-day event started in 1995, it will feature nine artists with recent recording contracts, including Alice Peacock, Justincase and headliner Smash Mouth. The weekend starts June 26 at Virginia's Oak Ridge Estate in the Blue Ridge Mountains.

Jeep wants to position its vehicles to younger buyers, between 18 and 25, said Lou Bitonti, senior manager-global brand events at Chrysler. The emerging-artist concerts were a test for a possible Jeep-developed program in 2004.

Jeep's agencies, Omnicom Group's BBDO, Troy, Mich., sibling Arnell Group, New York, and Fusion Five, Westport, Conn., assembled the acts. BBDO handled direct mail to 200,000 Jeep owners.

Mr. Bitonti expects nearly 10,000 people in more than 2,000 Jeeps, each paying $325 per SUV. Traditionally, 30% have been repeat attendees.

Jeep's 35 magazine-title partners each sponsor activities, including mountain boarding or fly-fishing on the 300-acre site. Mr. Bitonti uses an event measuring tool he got from BBDO two years ago that helps determine Jeep's return on investment.

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