Mophie, the maker of battery-charging smartphone cases, hopes to learn it's more than just a pup at garnering South by Southwest Interactive attention.
The Orange County, Calif.-based company is enlisting six leather-clad motorcyclists to drive Indian Motorcycles around downtown Austin, Texas, from March 11 through March 13. More importantly, a friendly-looking St. Bernard will appear in four of the six bikes' sidecars, reprising Mophie's attempt at pooch-based persuasion last year. The other promo-adorned motorcycles this weekend won't have sidecars.
Passersby who see the marketer's call to action and then tweet a photo of their smartphone to @Mophie—using the hashtag, #mophieRescue—could win a free battery-powering case. The street activation will run from 12 a.m. until 6 p.m. during the next few days, and winners will get their prizes paw-delivered by one of the St. Bernards. (Actually, the hound will be accompanied by a human, who will hand the prize to the fortunate individual.)
There will be 15 total dogs in the activation, including 11 canines resting off duty at Mophie's festival headquarters, the fictionally but aptly named "Bad to the Bone Bar" lounge, which is styled after a traditional biker joint and located at Fifth and Trinity streets. SXSW attendees are welcome to swing by and visit the pooches (including four puppies).
It's the second year in a row Mophie has embraced St. Bernards as a lovable, utility-as-marketing tactic at SXSW. In 2015, it also employed members of the Molossoid breed as digital lifesavers, a thematic play on how they are historically referenced as rescuers of people in trouble in the Swiss Alps.
Meanwhile, here's Mophie's video for this weekend's effort: