R/GA Enlists Trek Fans to Promote Game Via E-Mail

Tapping into the enthusiastic Star Trek fan base is a major part of the plan behind Activision’s new e-mail campaign, which introduces the game maker’s upcoming release, “Star Trek: Armada II.”

Created by New York-based i-shop R/GA, the campaign consists of two e-mail blasts, the first of which will be sent out next week. Although the first e-mail will be delivered to only 15,000 Star Trek gamers registered on Activision’s database, the i-shop and client hope the message will be passed along. The second e-mail will be sent Nov. 18, when the new game is scheduled to ship to stores.

“Star Trek gamers are very, very loyal,” said Tricia Bertero, vp, global brand management at Santa Monica, Calif.-based Activision. “Viral marketing works very well with them.”

In both e-mails, gamers will receive an HTML-based message that links to an electronic trading card. Each card contains a miniapplication that features two collectible combat ships from “Star Trek: Armada II.” The cards also give Star Trek fans the opportunity to preorder the game online and preview key ship features before it is released.

The campaign is designed to encourage fans to swap e-mails to collect all 12 ships in the series. Recipients can also download the ships to their Web browsers and interact with them on their PC desktops.

A print and online campaign, created by Los Angeles-based Ignited Minds, will break this month and run through January 2002. Activision spent $13 million on media in 2000 and $5 million during the first seven months of this year, according to CMR.