Why Volvo Wants You Tweeting During Its Competitors’ Super Bowl Ads

'Greatest Interception Ever' shifts spotlight onto inspirational people

Volvo won't be a Super Bowl advertiser this weekend, but several of its competitors will be—a fact the Swedish automaker plans to use for its own benefit.

With a promo called "The Greatest Interception Ever," Volvo is asking fans to tweet its hashtag, #VolvoContest, during other car brands' Super Bowl commercials. Participants will nominate a friend or loved one to win a new Volvo XC60 luxury crossover, with the idea being that the company wants to focus on real people rather than its own marketing message.

"While other car companies are showing you what matters to them," explains the video below, "we want to know who inspires you, who moves you, who matters most to you."

The initiative, created with Grey, New York, kicks off at 6:30 p.m. ET on Sunday. Selected tweets will get a response from Volvo, asking why each nominee was chosen. Five winners will be selected.

The car giveaway harkens back to an earlier car promotion created by Grey worldwide chief creative officer Tor Myhren. In 2004, when he was executive creative director on the General  Motors business at Leo Burnett, Detroit, Myhren worked with The Oprah Winfrey Show to give away nearly 300 Pontiacs to audience members at the premiere of Winfrey's 19th season. Similarly, the audience was chosen because friends and family had written into the show about why these audience members needed a new car.

While the Super Bowl usually hosts a large number of car advertisers—11 of them in 2014—many automakers are staying on the sidelines this year. So far, only five have confirmed that they've bought time on the game: BMW, Kia, Lexus, Nissan and Mercedes-Benz.

For more news about the brands and stars preparing buzzworthy spots, be sure to check our up-to-the-minute Super Bowl Ad Tracker.