Sprint.com

May 02, 2011

Virgin Mobile USA Launches Ad Campaign with Debut of Pop Culture Social Experiment

Company “manufactures” celebrity couple for fans to follow with Virgin Mobile unlimited plans

WARREN, N.J. (BUSINESS WIRE), May 02, 2011 - Roughly one year after Virgin Mobile USA introduced its data-rich Beyond Talk™ plans, the brand moves to exploit its unconventional lifestyle image by tapping into the country’s insatiable appetite for celebrity gossip. Virgin Mobile’s newest marketing campaign launches today, inviting customers to “Keep Up With Sparah.” Who or what is “Sparah?” Good question, but one you’ll soon learn the answer to, as Virgin Mobile manufactures a celebrity couple out of two unknowns – Spencer Falls and Sarah Carroll.

Over the next six months, Spencer and Sarah, two strangers selected from a casting call of thousands, will appear in a high-profile integrated marketing campaign including national television commercials, print, and a series of digital webisodes chronicling the couple’s rise to fame. Fans can keep up with “Sparah” at www.facebook.com/virginmobilelive.

“Virgin Mobile’s unlimited Web and data plans are really taking off with people using them to follow celebrities and pop culture,” said Sir Richard Branson, Virgin Group Founder. “Virgin Mobile likes to give people what they want. And in this spirit, I know they’ll use all of their resources to create a legitimate celebrity couple to ensure their customers never run out of something to tweet about.”

Sir Richard Branson himself will cameo in the anthem commercial (a first for Virgin Mobile USA) which airs today.

“Sparah” will be equipped with a house in the Hollywood Hills, a stylist and a publicist, all furnished by Virgin Mobile, to ensure they reflect all the trappings of a real celebrity couple. As their fame grows, the couple will be asked to participate in activities typical of A-list product endorsers, including photo shoots, TV commercials, store openings, and appearances at signature events, such as Virgin Mobile’s annual FreeFest music festival.

“I’m so excited, I can’t believe what’s happening!” said Sarah Carroll, one half of “Sparah.”. “Spencer and I couldn’t be more thrilled to be a part of this. Everyone tells us we’re in for a wild ride. I’m not quite sure what that means, but I’m sure it’ll be a ton of fun!”

As part of their contract with Virgin Mobile, the couple is required to chronicle their journey across a host of social media channels, including Facebook, Twitter, FourSquare, and video blogs. Virgin Mobile customers are encouraged to follow the couple on their Android–powered phones and unlimited plans that include unlimited Web, data, messaging, and email starting at $25/month.

ABOUT VIRGIN MOBILE USA

Virgin Mobile USA, one of Sprint’s prepaid brands, offers millions of customers control, flexibility and connectivity through Virgin Mobile’s Beyond Talk™ plans for mobile phone service and prepaid Broadband2Go high-speed Web access. Virgin Mobile branded devices are available at more than 40,000 retail stores, including Best Buy, Radio Shack, Target and Walmart. Top-Up cards are available at approximately 150,000 locations nationwide and can be used for Broadband2Go services. Purchase and experience Virgin Mobile on the Web and at Facebook, Twitter, You Tube and www.virginmobileusa.com.

Contact(s):

Virgin Mobile USA
Jayne Wallace, 908-660-0400
Jayne.wallace@virginmobileusa.com


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