Coca-Cola sets up mobile social network

Coca-Cola Co. is creating a virtual teenager hangout like MySpace and Facebook, only on cell phones, to lure more youngsters to its sodas and flavored drinks, starting in the United States and China. Eyeing the success of mostly desktop computer-bound teen social sites run by media companies, like News Corp's MySpace, the world biggest soft drink maker said on Wednesday it was creating a cell-phone network under its Sprite brand where members can set up profiles, post pictures and meet new friends.

Coke, part of a growing group of advertisers putting ad campaigns on cell phones, will make the U.S. site available to Web-ready phones on June 22. It launched in China last week and is eyeing other markets in regions like Latin America.

"The Coca-Cola Company needs to continue to recruit future generations of consumers," said Mark Greatrex, senior vice president of marketing for Coca-Cola. "Mobile marketing is absolutely where it's at for us going forward." [more]

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