Nissan Xterra launches site to promote outdoor play

Click on Nissan Xterra's new website -- www.xterra.com -- and you'll find no mention of vehicles, tires, engine size or interior colors. In fact, Nissan isn't even concerned about folks spending much time on its site at all. Its goal is to "drive people offline and outdoors."
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Click on Nissan Xterra's new website -- www.xterra.com -- and you'll find no mention of vehicles, tires, engine size or interior colors. In fact, Nissan isn't even concerned about folks spending much time on its site at all. Its goal, according to Don McKinney, a creative director for the company who designed the site, Omnicom Group Tequila, is to "drive people offline and outdoors."

The flash-heavy website was designed to encourage visitors to indulge in outdoor activities, something that, according to focus groups, many Xterra owners crave.

"This idea evolved into a website that with every click creates an urgency to log off and get outside -- to participate in an outdoor lifestyle rather than sit indoors and surf the Net," said McKinney.

To achieve that goal, the site lets users choose an environment that best fits their lifestyle: Snow, Water, Dirt or Road. The environments are divided into modules that contain unique content.

When the SNEWS team clicked in by selecting the "Snow Module," we were taken to the Challenge of the Day -- "#98, Ice Climbing: Canada. Ice-climb the Canadian Rockies, Alberta and British Columbia -- arguably the best ice-climbing area in the world, the Canadian Rockies have a wealth of every type of ice imaginable…" An invitation to Find More took us to a map where we played all over the globe drooling over play opportunities. What the heck were we doing indoors writing this anyway!

Another cool website feature is the "100 Things To Do Before You Die," which challenges outdoor enthusiasts to accomplish tasks such as backpacking in Nepal or mountain biking in Alaska. Xterra owners can submit a photo and a story about one of the 100 challenges they completed and earn limited edition Xterra stickers.

This is the first major Web initiative for Xterra since Nissan launched the sport utility vehicle in 1999. The site targets Xterra owners and prospects who primarily are athletic males, 24 years and older.

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