// palm treo personalities
How to dial up interest for one of the world’s smartest phones?
Get it into 300 hands that matter and thousands more will follow.
When Treo managed to combine a mobile phone, handheld, and wireless internet into an all-in-one communications tool, a new category was born: smartphones. Who better to demonstrate their usefulness than the very people that the whole world wants to connect with?
Avantgarde compiled a list of 300 innovators trusted in top circles in the worlds of entertainment, business, food, philanthropy and more – people so widely known and respected, they’re household names to us all. The result was a who’s who that included musicians Peter Gabriel and Lou Reed, Matthew Broderick, chef Mario Batali, Starbucks Chairman Howard Schultz, astronaut Buzz Aldrin, and many others.
Step one was identifying the influencers, step two was influencing them. Avantgarde got the Treo 600 into the hands of these VIPs, letting the device speak for itself. It worked. The Treo became such an integral part of their daily lives, that Reed, Broderick, Batali and others became enthusiastic evangelists, happily agreeing to be photographed in portraits with their Treos. Aldrin and others went one step further, even talking about the product at Treo’s trade show booth. Not a dime was paid for these endorsements, proving that the most priceless PR is that which is generated out of genuine appreciation for a product.
So wide were the ripple effects that they reached across the pond, where we established a European influencer base long before the product’s launch there. We even created influencer partnerships with companies like Coach, who designed stylish leather cases for this new breed of smartphone.
No one leaves home without their cell phone. Avantgarde turned this fact to Treo’s advantage, ensuring that the people who matter most in their circles would be seen carrying the smartest of the smartphones. Those who didn’t have live “star sightings” had virtual ones, courtesy of the celebrity portraiture on Treo’s web site. In the end, the message was clear: if the world’s most in-demand people connect with a Treo, why shouldn’t we?