HUNTERSVILLE, N.C. – Feb. 10, 2010 – Sprint (NYSE:S) today introduced the 2010 Miss Sprint Cup lineup to the media, as well as fans who follow the program via social media, during Speedweeks in Daytona Beach, Fla.
Returning for her third season as Miss Sprint Cup, Monica Palumbo was joined by newcomers Paige Duke and Amanda Wright in the media center at Daytona International Speedway, as the program expands to three representatives in 2010.
Palumbo is a native of Charlotte, N.C. Duke and Wright hail from Lancaster, S.C., and York, Maine.
The program, which began as a small part of a Sprint sweepstakes promotion in 2007, has become a valuable asset for the Sprint NASCAR sponsorship, both in terms of brand exposure and fan engagement.
“It’s amazing how the fans have embraced the Miss Sprint Cup program,” said Steve Gaffney, vice president of Corporate Marketing for Sprint. “Miss Sprint Cup has become the fans’ ‘friend on the inside,’ interacting with fans both at the track and through social media. Our mission at Sprint is to help fans get closer to the sport they love, and the Miss Sprint Cup program does a tremendous job of that.”
Highly visible personalities at every NASCAR Sprint Cup Series event, the Miss Sprint Cup representatives appear throughout the weekend at the Sprint Experience mobile display, where they greet fans and interviews drivers, celebrities and other NASCAR personalities. They can also be found interacting with race-day attendees on pit road tours, in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series garage and at driver introductions.
The program has experienced tremendous growth in the social media space during the past year and now boasts more than 71,000 fans on Facebook, 5,700 followers on Twitter, and the largest membership (approx. 64,000 members) of any “crew” in the Community section of NASCAR.com.
“We’ve made the Miss Sprint Cup program a central component of our overall social media strategy at Sprint,” said Gaffney. “We’ve been very pleased with the high volume of overwhelmingly positive two-way direct fan interaction. This new and rapidly evolving channel is a great way to interact with consumers and build brand affinity.”
Pg. 2, Miss Sprint Cup Unveil (Cont.)
Sprint also used its social media presence to build interest in the unveiling. For the past several weeks, photos of the new lineup were displayed online, with the faces obscured by question marks. A new tidbit of information about the lineup was posted to Twitter and Facebook each day to help pique fans’ interest. A trivia game on the Miss Sprint Cup Facebook page gave fans the chance to answer NASCAR-related questions. When enough followers correctly answered the questions each day, another piece of a photo “puzzle” was displayed, with the final piece revealing the faces of the three young women.
With the rise in the program’s popularity, Miss Sprint Cup now regularly receives requests from tracks, teams, charitable organizations and even other NASCAR sponsors to appear at various events. The increased time demands, both at and away from the track, spurred the decision to expand the program to include a third Miss Sprint Cup for 2010. Two of the three representatives will appear at every race, while all three will be at select events, including the Daytona 500.
The group will make its first public appearance at noon (EST) Thursday, Feb. 11, when they greet fans for the first time at the Sprint Experience in the midway of Daytona International Speedway.
About Sprint Nextel
Sprint Nextel offers a comprehensive range of wireless and wireline communications services bringing the freedom of mobility to consumers, businesses and government users. Sprint Nextel is widely recognized for developing, engineering and deploying innovative technologies, including two wireless networks serving more than 48 million customers at the end of the third quarter of 2009 and the first 4G service from a national carrier in the United States; industry-leading mobile data services; instant national and international push-to-talk capabilities; and a global Tier 1 Internet backbone. The company’s customer-focused strategy has led to improved first call resolution and customer care satisfaction scores. For more information, visit http://www.sprint.com/.