Photo: Ebay Screengrab
On Wednesday, the innovative Swedish digital shop Forsman & Bodenfors announced the launch of a breakthrough new product site for the Volvo FH big rig on an unexpected social media site. It’s not Pinterest or Instagram or any of the other en vogue social platforms.Rather, F&B went for a different social landmark: “The world’s first site on eBay.” That’s right: eBay, best-known as the home of second-hand junk.
“We have been working on the launch of this new truck for three years,” copywriter and senior partner Bjorn Engstrom told us. “[Volvo] turned to us because they wanted to do things in a new way. They wanted us to think outside the box with new media and break the rules in their business — the truck business is very traditional.”
So why choose eBay, a used goods auction site?
Well, according to Engstrom, “It’s very hard to reach truck drivers. You don’t know what they read.” They have limited media exposure while they’re driving. But one is is sure: they most certainly aren’t pinning pictures of spare tires.
“We had quite a lot of research, so we know that one place where they are is on eBay,” he said. “We know truckers are very interested in cars, and are always looking for used parts on eBay.”
Of course, F&B is using Twitter and Facebook to promote the campaign, but it hopes that those sites will bring people to the eBay platform. F&B also incorporated its high-octane viral video from last month, in which a tightrope walker has to cross between two speeding trucks before they enter two separate tunnels on its eBay page. The video already has almost 6 million views.
The eBay site, which can be seen here, also uses a key eBay component: an auction. The world’s first Volvo FH truck went up for auction Wednesday morning for one euro and is now at 220,540 euros. “In 24 hours the price is more than twice the cost of a normal truck,” Engstrom said.
All proceeds will go to Star for Life, a charity that helps children fight HIV in South Africa.
Although the auction, which will end September 29, is exclusively for Europeans, Engstrom told BI, “We really want to build buzz in the United States, Brazil, and Japan … the whole world.”
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