On December 3rd, 2009, Samsung launched the Mobile Explorers Contest, in which they asked teams of two to create a short video submission that demonstrated why they would be good Mobile Explorers at the Vancouver 2010 Olympic Winter Games. What exactly is a Mobile Explorer? Well, the ten finalists selected (five teams of two) were sent to the Vancouver 2010 Olympic Winter Games whey they are currently bringing the Olympic experience to the web through videos, blog posts and mobile updates.
For 20 days, they will have firsthand access at the Olympic Winter Games as well as compete in challenges such as visiting Vancouver sites, collecting fan stories and discovering the Olympic spirit. Fans will vote for their favorite Mobile Explorer team on Samsung’s Facebook page and the winning team will win a Samsung product and cash prize package and a blogging gig on Samsung.com.
“Samsung recognizes the value of social media and the immense power behind direct interaction with consumers – communicating, listening and engaging,” states Jose Cardona, corporate communications manager at Samsung Electronics America. “We regularly connect with people online via Twitter (@SamsungTweets), Facebook, YouTube, Flikr and our own Samsung USA Newsroom, which is an online clearinghouse of company and product news and information. Our Samsung Mobile Explorer program is yet another example of our efforts to connect directly with consumers.”
In fact, the Samsung Mobile Explorer program extends beyond the U.S. “Samsung Mobile Explorers is a global initiative for us, with participants from the United States, Russia, China, Korea and Canada,” explained Cardona. “The program is a way for us to further our support for the Olympic Movement, giving behind-the-scenes access to everyday people – our Mobile Explorers and all of the fans that are following their journeys in Vancouver.”
The five Mobile Explorer teams all have in common their backgrounds in utilizing the internet for entertainment and to inform and seem to have been picked for their quirky personalities as well as their savvy. Interestingly, four of the five teams hail from California, including Team Cool Kids, Ethan Newberry and Lindsay Harbert, who host one of the most popular shows on Brian Gramo’s theStream.tv, The Real Cool Club. According to Newberry, they plan on utilizing their experience by doing several live streams from Vancouver.
In addition to the Mobile Explorers, Samsung partnered up with Hannah Teter, reigning women’s halfpipe Olympic gold medalist, where she will share her experiences and give her own Olympic-related challenges to the Explorers. “Among them will be a head-to-head contest for the teams to raise awareness for her charity Hannah’s Gold, which benefits communities in Africa struggling against the effects of poverty and, recently, earthquake recovery efforts in Haiti. The charity is funded through sales of Hannah’s Gold Maple Syrup and Hannah’s contest winnings. For 2010 Samsung will match dollar-for-dollar all sales of Hannah’s Gold Maple Syrup to benefit the charity,” added Cardona. Gramo’s