Cathay lets fans have a ball with Facebook check-in game

PUBLISHED : Sunday, 27 March, 2011, 12:00am
UPDATED : Sunday, 27 March, 2011, 12:00am

Cathay Pacific has ramped up its social media this year.

'We have started a number of social media activities at the Sevens as it gives the chance to engage people in new ways,' online marketing manager Alistair Bullock said. 'Every year we see a greater impact of social media through interaction with fans and the addition of new fans. We get hundreds of comments and 'likes', especially around the South Stand.'

Bullock sees the Sevens as a chance to inject some fun into Cathay's official fan page on Facebook by emphasising a love of rugby, which shows another side of Hong Kong to foreign audiences. 'Social media and sports are connected in the sense that the Sevens is a place to go with friends and family to see the game and have fun in general,' he says. 'We post photos from the South Stand, and fans at the event - as well as people who can't be there - really enjoy seeing and commenting on these photos.

'The Sevens enables us to try out new ideas and concepts, from our initial User Generated Video competition to Twitter and other social media. It is also an opportunity to interact with our fans [both CX and Sevens] and see the results immediately. For the past two years we ran a competition asking fans to create their own versions of our ads. We put the best up on YouTube and then showed the best three on the Diamond Vision screen at the stadium for people to vote on.'

This year, Cathay is introducing a Facebook-connected 'location-based, check-in' game, which ties in to the charity auction of the world's biggest rugby ball. The first 20 people each day who check in at the ball's various locations will win souvenirs. More details are on Cathay's Facebook fan page.

The giant ball in question was unveiled last week. As certified by Guinness World Records, the ball - which has been manufactured using authentic rugby ball materials - measures 2.9m x 4.7m. It can accommodate more than 3,300 standard-sized rugby balls inside.

The record-setting giant ball will be auctioned to raise funds for those affected by natural disasters in Japan, Yunnan province on the mainland and Christchurch in New Zealand. The funds raised will go to the Hong Kong Red Cross to assist its relief efforts.