Nescafe builds buzz via viral e-mail effort

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[Buenos Aires, Argentina] Despite a tight marketing budget for Nescafe Cafe con Leche, Nestle Argentina has generated buzz for the coffee-with-milk mix thanks to a viral marketing effort played out through e-mails. The $10,000 campaign, devised by Buenos Aires independent agency Waiser Comunicacion, involved recruiting 50 of the beverage's target consumers-25-to-45-year-old, technology-savvy men and women-who were avid forwarders of e-mail and who agreed to send the spot to at least 15 people each. The spot, of two young women in skimpy pajamas preparing an iced coffee with the mix, links to a Web site with an interactive kitchen. Visitors click on ingredients in cupboards and the refrigerator to follow recipes for coffee ice shakes with cream, rum or other ingredients. "It demonstrates additional uses for the product," important for boosting turnover, said Christophe Stern, Nestle Argentina's marketing manager for coffee, beverages and confectionery.

The technique, used for the first time in Argentina, built buzz for the brand by getting consumers themselves to spread it. In the month after its February launch, the spot and link were forwarded 100,000 times and 15% to 20% of visitors answered a four-question survey. It was cheaper, too, said Mr. Stern, and people "use the site, follow the recipes. It is a quality response." The campaign follows 50,000 product samplings and distribution of 80,000 brochures at trendy beach hangouts.

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