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Hertz plays Cupid with dream date contest for Valentine’s Day

Car rental company Hertz is prompting consumers to enter in its Valentine’s Day sweepstakes via a mobile site to win a date night, including a rental car, dinner and post-dinner entertainment.

Calling it a Dream Date Rewind Contest, the inspiration behind the campaign is to let consumers have a date do-over to correct the mistakes they encountered the first time while also promoting Hertz’ Dream Car collection that features luxury brand cars. While mobile and social serve as the driver for this initiative, Hertz generates conversation among consumers to ultimately create brand awareness and loyalty.

“At Hertz, we are always looking for new ways to tap into the fun of driving, and nothing sets the tone for a great date night like an impressive vehicle,” said Bob Stuart, executive vice president of global sales and marketing at Hertz, Cleveland, OH. “The Hertz Dream Date Rewind promotion will give deserving customers the chance to experience a luxury Dream Car rental to help erase those memories of a date gone wrong and replace them with memories of a dream date come true.”

Driving response
To enter the contest, mobile users simply submit a photo or video with a description of their bad date experience, share it on Facebook or Twitter and explain why they deserve a “Dream Date Rewind.” Three winners will receive a free, all-inclusive date night including a Hertz Dream Car rental, dinner and post-dinner entertainment.

To participate, users can go to They then should upload a photo with caption or a video to explain why they deserve to win. Then, they should share their entry with friends across social media and encourage them to vote for their chance to win. The more votes entrants receive, the better the chances to win.

The top 10 videos or photos with the highest scores will be submitted to Hertz, and the brand will then narrow the selection to three. Users have until Feb. 27 to enter.

Currently, the Hertz Dream Car collection is offered in 35 U.S. markets, including Los Angeles, Dallas/Fort Worth, New York, Atlanta and Las Vegas. The collection is expanding to European markets this year. Makes and models of the collection include Aston Martin V8 Vantage, Audi R8, Spyder, Land Rover Range Rover Sport and Lamborghini Gallardo, among several others.

Dream car rentals include a Hertz concierge who offers personalized orientation of the vehicle. Delivery to and pickup from hotel, home or other off-airport location is also available.

Hertz’s efforts are an effective way to get consumers in its luxury car offerings and try them out, which can possibly prompt them to come back in the future and make a purchase.

Turning a new leaf
Brands in the automotive space are using mobile in a number of ways to market their products.

For example, Greyhound, a national provider of intercity bus transportation, is enticing consumers to buy more bus tickets via its new mobile application, which features mobile booking and a rewards program.

The new app for iOS and Android consumers allows guests to easily manage their Greyhound trips by searching for schedules, using discounts, booking trips and finding terminal locations all from the convenience of their mobile device. Greyhound claims that the app offers a more user-friendly design than its predecessor to further convenience consumers by providing them the opportunity to book travel in a quicker, more efficient manner (see story).

Also, in October 2014, car-shopping site acquired CarCode to boost its mobile strategy by enabling users to interact one-on-one with car dealers via text messaging.

The CarCode texting service was deployed nationwide across the Edmunds network of dealers and is free to use for dealers and for consumers. Through this move, aims to streamline the car shopping experience and invest more heavily into its mobile strategy to keep up with rising trends in mobile shopping and showrooming (see story).

“By creating a contest, and integrating social media sharing, Hertz will be effectively promoting its line of luxury cars available for rent,” said Sandhya Suryam, marketing director at Atimi Software, Vancouver. “For many consumers who want the thrill of driving a luxury car but can’t afford to purchase one, renting one for a special occasion or celebration is feasible.

“Hertz promoting a fun contest around this, will help to grab extra attention for speciality that they may not have otherwise been considered for,” she said. “Automakers and auto brands need to be where consumers attention is focused. The key is, breaking through the clutter to get noticed in a rather saturated channel.”

Final Take
Caitlyn Bohannon is an editorial assistant on Mobile Commerce Daily, New York