CYPRESS, Calif. (Nov. 17, 2011) — Nitto Tire U.S.A. Inc. is going virtual to find new customers.
Cypress-based Nitto Tire is partnering with Cie Games Inc. to integrate the Nitto brand into Car Town, a “wildly popular” automotive-based Facebook game.
The one-year collaboration will offer Car Town players in-game activities, virtual items, community contests and giveaways, Nitto said.
“This is a great opportunity for us to widen our customer base, including enthusiasts and even casual gamers with less familiarity with the brand,” said Marketing Specialist Stephen Leu. “The exposure will help increase awareness and recognition of the Nitto brand and our offerings.”
According to online postings of gamers who've tried the game, Car Town is about collecting. New Car Town gamers are given a basic garage that forms their home base and some credits they can use to to customize their garage or buy a car. The choices start with basic transportation options and escalate to exotics.
Players earn points by performing jobs or taking on challenges. Once players have a car or cars, they can take road trips, race, make deliveries, etc. A key objective is for players to customize their rides, hence the tie-in for Nitto.
As part of the partnership, players can participate in Nitto-branded game missions featuring the company's new line of tires, Nitto said. The first mission will introduce the Nitto Motivo, an all-weather, ultra-high performance tire, unveiled at this year's Specialty Equipment Market Association (SEMA) show, to Car Town players and tie-in real-world benefits to related activities in-game.
Other Nitto-branded virtual items, such as posters, garage items and custom virtual vehicles modeled after Nitto-sponsored race cars, will be available in-game.
“(Nitto's) innovative approach to marketing and their emphasis on social and digital media align perfectly with Car Town's unique offerings,” said Cie Games President and CEO Justin Choi. “Plus our game players will love to interact with such a respected enthusiast brand.”
Car Town also will host various community contests to create Nitto custom-branded car wraps and/or garages, Nitto said.
Gamers will also be able to partake in the Nitto Tire Car Town Virtual Giveaway, where they can visit and “Like” Nitto's Facebookpage to unlock various branded virtual items. The first one is the Nitto Motorsports Big Rig for use in their Car Town garage.
Long Beach, Calif.-bsed Cie Games claims Car Townhas attracted more than 35 million players since its launch in 2010. The company also has developed licensing, advertising and marketing partnerships and integrations with more than 30 major companies and brands for Car Town, including NASCAR, General Motors Co., Honda, Toyota, Ferrari, Universal Pictures, Regal Entertainment and others.