Yakima Takes Viral Marketing to the Next Level with “Yakimagrams"

Yakima, an innovator in vehicle racks for boats, bikes and wintersports gear, home storage and cargo boxes, today unveiled “Yakimagrams” (www.yakimagrams.com).
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Combining the irreverence and quirky personality of its brand, Yakima, an innovator in vehicle racks for boats, bikes and wintersports gear, home storage and cargo boxes, today unveiled “Yakimagrams” (www.yakimagrams.com), a fresh approach to viral marketing enabling consumers to send humorous messages to colleagues inviting them on outdoor adventures. Starring Cowboy Dusty, a figure that harkens back to the folksy days of adventure in the Wild West, the campaign features four different tongue and cheek invites for activities including: mountain biking, camping, kayaking, hiking, skiing/boarding and “fresh air breathing”. In addition, consumers can type in an activity that is not included in the available selection list to customize their message. This marketing initiative was developed by Stick and Move, Yakima's agency of record based in Philadelphia.

The site will also feature a “Not So Frequently Asked Questions” section where visitors “Ask Dusty” comical questions including: can I carry toxic waste in my cargo box?; a tree monster is attacking the rack on my car, what do I do?; and, will you ever make a robot that can automatically load gear onto my car?. Visitors can also ask their own questions and Dusty will pick the best ones and answer them in a whimsical song that will be sent to each individual.

“We have incorporated the heart and soul of our brand into a compelling, engaging, funny outreach campaign that lets us communicate with our consumers differently,” said Mike Steck, Sr. director of marketing at Yakima. “This is a fresh approach to viral marketing, providing us with an offbeat way of connecting to our customers.”

Continued Steck, “The campaign is humorous and original giving people the choice of sending personalized messages in a way that is consistent with whom we are. I guarantee people will laugh. This is our way of having some fun while we spread the Yakima gospel.”

The Yakimagrams are the next prong in Yakima's extraordinary viral marketing program. In 2005, the company completed Yakywood, a host of comical award winning viral films. This spring, the company launched Yakima Challenges, where visitors can watch quick video segments of humorous challenges: “Cheerleader vs. Ground Control,” where a cheerleader pyramid attempts to organize as much gear as Yakima's Ground Control product (the recently introduced home storage product); “Sprocket Rocket vs. Duct Tape,” where duct tape attempts to hold a bicycle like the Sprocket Rocket (a bike rack); and “Skybox vs. Pack Mule,” where a pack mule competes with the Skybox (cargo box) in storing and transporting gear.

Yakima is a world leader in the design and manufacture of destination hardware and gear management solutions. Yakima's products include vehicle racks for bikes, boats, ski equipment and gear; a line of cargo boxes for a variety of needs; and Ground Control, an integrated gear management system for the home. Yakima Products is headquartered in Beaverton, Oregon. For more information, visit www.yakima.com.

Stick and Move is an advertising agency specializing in non-traditional big ideas. The agency offers creative services ranging from TV and print production to promotions and web development, in essence any communication that helps shape a brand. Stick and Move is headquartered in Philadelphia. For more information, visit www.stickandmove.com.
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