Verizon Wireless Continues Teen Pitch

Mobile carrier Verizon Wireless is continuing its efforts to woo teens to its [FREEUP] prepaid service, with a second, more urban-themed campaign.

Targeting teens, who are considered by the industry to be the prime movers behind mass adoption of new wireless services, the [FREEUP] campaign looks to communicate the fun and feeling of freedom of not being restricted to calling plans.

Designed by Southfield, Mich.-based multicultural and urban ad agency GlobalHue, the campaign will launch later this month with national television, radio, and print ads promoting [FREEUP]. Spots will feature up-and-coming R&B singer Tweet, whose single and video, “Call Me,” not coincidentally, debuted in May.

“Tweet and her new song create synergy with Verizon Wireless [FREEUP], the cutting-edge prepay product,” said Marvin Davis, vice president of advertising at Bedminster, N.J.-based Verizon Wireless. “[FREEUP] offers the hottest phones, features and benefits, valuable promotions and competitive rates, plus the reliability of the Verizon Wireless network. Tweet in our campaign takes [FREEUP]’s message to our late teen and young adult target in a trend-setting way that speaks directly to their wireless needs for individuality.”

Spending was not disclosed. Television spots will run on ABC, NBC, The WB, Fox, BET, Comedy Central, TBS, TNN, USA and UPN. Print ads will appear in Vibe, The Source, Rolling Stone, YM, Teen People, T&W Skateboarding, ESPN-The Magazine and Cosmopolitan. The campaign also includes a 30-second national radio network spot.

“We believe we’ve hit upon all the right elements in this new campaign to help Verizon Wireless reach its goals of increasing users in the youth market,” said GlobalHue Chairman and Chief Executive Don Coleman.

The effort is the second major push for [FREEUP] by Verizon Wireless — a joint venture of Verizon Communications and Vodafone — to promote the prepaid service to teens.

In October, the company launched a major television and online effort supporting the debut of [FREEUP]. That campaign sought to drive traffic to the company’s FREE[2]TLK Web site using a contest and incentives. In conjunction with electronics and entertainment giant Sony , teens were offered chances to win Sony electronics or tickets to Sony films, and were incentivized to buy into the plan with a free copy of Sony Music’s compilation CD, “Now That’s What I Call Music 6,” distributed with every purchase.

Ads also ran on Sony Pictures Digital Entertainment’s Web properties, including gaming site The [email protected], Dawson’s and Dawson’s Desktop. (Sony produces the “Dawson’s Creek” teen television series.) In addition, Verizon Wireless also dabbled with using e-mail marketing to reach teens in connection with and affinity marketer Student Advantage.

Spending was not disclosed on the effort, but Verizon Wireless said at the time that it would heavily advertise the site by allocating a “large portion” of its fall marketing campaign to the effort.

The new campaign comes on the heels of an agreement with Microsoft to offer the Redmond, Wash. software and Internet giant’s MSN portal on Verizon Wireless-enabled phones.

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