Last weekend, at the Canadian International AutoShow in Toronto, toy car makers Hot Wheels, together with Chevrolet Canada and marketing firm TrojanOne, displayed Canada’s first Twitter-activated promotional vending machine – aptly called "The Hot Wheels Camaro-matic Trending Machine." By tweeting the correct hash-tag, it dispensed free (if small) Camaro’s to attendees.
Visitors to the AutoShow were offered one of a possible two die-cast toy cars, which they could claim by standing next to the vending machine and sending a tweet to @HotWheelsCanada using the hash-tag #ChevyCIAS. As long as the tweeters had Twitter’s location services enabled on their smartphone or tablet so the Camaro-matic could confirm they were indeed standing right next to it, the machine would dispense a miniature 1:64-scale vehicle.
The familiar coil dispensing machine, which usually accepts notes and coins, was modified by TrojanOne to add an internet connection that allowed it to actively search for the appropriate string, or hash-tag and handle, on Twitter.
While Twitter-activated vending machines have been seen before, it seems the interactive method might be gaining some traction – at least in the promotional arena. If the trend continues it may prove to be an indispensable tool for social media-savvy marketers. (Boom-tish.)
Watch the video below to see the Camaro-matic in action.