(CelebrityAccess MediaWire) —
Vibes Media, a provider of interactive text message marketing programs, has started a premium service partnership allowing fans to send personalized text messages that will be read by the Backstreet Boys and posted on overhead screens at the band's current concert tour.
The Backstreet Boys have been using Vibes' premium Text-2-Screen concert text messaging application since July 22, the day the band kicked off its world tour. Thousands of fans are jumping on board every day, inside and outside the concert arena, sending messages at a cost of $2.99 each from their cell phones. Any messages sent to the short code 36888 are sent right to the band.
The text messaging effort has gotten off to a rousing start. At the July 30 Wantagh, NY show, fans sent 1,637 text messages. The promotion has already generated more than $25,000 in sales through Aug. 10, and text messaging traffic has been building each week.
"We really like this new technology because we get feedback and it gives our fans the opportunity to talk to us," said Backstreet Boy Howie Dorough. "It's always interesting to see what they are going to write every night."
"I like being able to know what our fans are thinking about the material that is on the record, as well as our live show," added fellow Backstreet Boy Brian Littrell. "Text messaging makes that possible. Thanks and God Bless!"
Vibes Text-2-Screen turns any concert event into an interactive experience by receiving text messages from individuals' cell phones and displaying the messages in real time on a big screen. The program includes a reply message so that each participant receives a customized message from the artist or sponsor.
Vibes has extensive experience in the entertainment industry, supplying text messaging services at concerts featuring Green Day, Black Eyed Peas, Avril Lavigne, John Legend, Fabulous, Hoobastank and Simple Plan. The company is currently supplying wireless data services for the 2005 Vans Warped Tour, giving fans the option of getting text message alerts about band appearances and autograph signings.
"We look at text messaging as a way to help the Backstreet Boys connect with their fans," said Alex Campbell, CEO, Vibes Media. "Text messaging has always been recognized as a valuable tool for carriers and consumers, and we are thrilled to be able to take it to the next level with premium messaging."
On the Backstreet Boys tour all messages pass through an extensive and proprietary filter designed to intelligently monitor messages so no offensive words or phrases are displayed. Each fan will go through a double opt-in procedure to verify that they understand that they will be charged to send a message and confirm that they still want to participate.
In addition to sending messages, fans at Backstreet Boys concerts can use their camera phones to snap exclusive behind-the-scenes pictures of the band. By sending the word "PEEK" as a text message to the shortcode 36888, fans will be sent live pictures of the band directly to their phones. Each picture costs $2.99. –Bob Grossweiner and Jane Cohen