CMO

Sonic branding, build-your-own payments token lead Mastercard Australian Open activation

Experiential activity sees consumers tapping technology to win prizes
Naomi Osaka

Naomi Osaka

Building your own payments security token and recreating Mastercard’s sonic melody lie at the heart of the credit card company’s new experiential activity at this year’s Australian Open.

Mastercard this week debuted what it’s calling the ‘Breakthough room’, a pop-up activation onsite that’s part of a wider mix of marketing activities supporting this year’s tournament. The technology ‘vortex’ encourages consumers to build a team and complete a series of challenges for a chance to win a package to the men’s finals at the 2021 edition of the Open including courtside seats, accommodation and flights.

Each team is given six minutes to complete a set of challenges in the room, firstly picking up a device to navigate through the tech installation and naming their team. Challenge one is to arrange audio pieces in the correct order to create Mastercard’s sonic brand melody, while the second is to construct a token by tapping the correct puzzle pieces on a touch-sensitive surface. The third challenge is to find a series of clues to locate and buy courtside tickets, reflecting the prize on offer.

To kick off the experiential activity, Mastercard recruited tennis champion, Naomi Osaka, to complete the challenge, which she did in 3 minutes 36 seconds. The tech space showcases biometrics, voice recognition and secure payment technology such as tokenisation.

Mastercard division president for Australasia, Rich Wormald, said the Australian open activity is the first of its kind globally. It was produced in partnership with event construction company, Octagon Australia, and Future Labs.

“This gives fans an opportunity to engage with concepts that underpin the technology and innovation at Mastercard,” he said. “The game takes consumers on a fun and futuristic journey through the world of technology payments and the technology that goes into making every tap seamless.”

As well as the main prize, those completing the challenge can tap their Mastercard on vending machines offering a range of ‘Priceless Surprises’ such as gift vouchers and accessories.

Mastercard told CMO the Breakthrough room is one of a number of marketing initiatives supporting the brand’s Official Payment Partner status at the Australian Open 2020. Within the Innovation Hub, the company is also hosting a series of business sessions for government, customers and business partners.

In addition, its ‘Rally together’ consumer-focused campaign sees the group conducting an Australia-wide search for young inventors, encouraging them to come up with a new idea using technology to improve the world. Key areas for example are education, bringing different cultures together, helping others in need, making friends and the environment. Three finalists will be able to share these ideas at the Open, while the winner gets awarded a STEM innovation camp for themselves and their entire school class.

There’s also ‘Join the rally’, Mastercard’s broader advertising campaign, which will ask and then broadcast popular responses to questions about the most popular things happening around tennis.

Meanwhile, there are so specific targets set for how many people Mastercard hopes to see interact with its onsite technology pop-up.

“For us this is about taking consumers on a fun and futuristic journey through the world of payments and the technology that goes into it,” Wormald reiterated. The pop-up runs until 2 February.

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