Sprint is linking its new 4G handset to “iconic firsts” in an integrated marketing campaign to support the launch of the device, which goes on sale tomorrow.
The campaign for the HTC Evo 4G includes 30- and 60-second television ads that underscore the “breakthrough nature” of Sprint’s 4G rollout. The spot’s visuals showcase a succession of inventions through time – the wheel, the train, the rotary phone, the camera – culminating in Sprint’s delivery of its dual-mode 3G/4G phone.
The campaign also includes print, online and direct-mail elements that emphasize Sprint’s 4G network and the fact that Sprint is the first U.S. carrier to have a 4G phone.
One element of the campaign invites consumers to share their 4G “firsts,” such as the first tweet at 4G speed, the 4G first wedding vows streamed live, or the first photo of an eight-person 4G hot spot. Evo 4G users who are the first to post specific 4G experiences will receive virtual badges to post on their website or social network page.
Sprint’s senior vice president of corporate marketing Bill Morgan said the campaign reinforces Sprint’s 4G position while highlighting the Evo’s capabilities. The Android 2.1-based Evo supports Qik live video chat, a mobile hot spot capability that supports up to eight Wi-Fi devices, two cameras, a 4.3-inch touchscreen and Qualcomm’s 1 GHz Snapdragon processor.
The Evo will be available at Sprint retail channels, RadioShack, Best Buy and Wal-Mart for $199.99 with a two-year service agreement, $69.99 Everything Data plan with $10 Premium Data add-on and a $100 mail-in rebate.
Sprint launched its 4G service in Baltimore, Md., in September 2008 and has since built it out to 33 markets together with Clearwire. Sprint 4G currently covers 41 million people and expects to cover 120 million people by the end of this year.