Nokia to launch Ovi Maps advert


Nokia is to launch its biggest marketing campaign to promote its free satnav service, Ovi Maps.

The campaign launches on May 8 across television and cinema and will be expanded across other forms of media over the next six weeks. Nokia UK marketing director John Nichols said the campaign is the largest the manufacturer has launched in investment terms, spending “millions”.

The advertisement highlights Nokia’s flagship devices the X6 and E72 and is shot in different locations. Shoe designer Hetty Rose is pictured in London searching for a boutique shoe shop and Wu Yulu, a chinese farmer who developed a robot rickshaw, is shown in Shanghai.

Branded taxis in London, Birmingham, Glasgow and Manchester will also be part of the campaign.

Said Nichols: “Every day we make choices about where to go and which route to take. Ovi Maps not only helps unlock some of the great places on our own doorstep and abroad but makes navigation easy. Our campaign celebrates finding your way and some of the moments that people share along the way.”

Ovi Maps has been downloaded by 10 million customers globally, but Nichols would not release UK specific figures. “We are very happy with the uptake of the service in the UK,” he said.

“The service was made free from January 21. But it’s not just about the free sat nav – there are other location-based features. Customers can browse categories for local businesses to identify the nearest restaurant, say. The service is as good or if not better than others on the market.”

This week, Nokia launched a free service pack, Own Voice for Ovi Maps, which enables users to customise the voice over for the satnav.

The marketing campaign comes weeks after Google launched its satnav for Google Maps on Android devices, but Nichols said he is not worried about the competition. “The timing right now is perfect. We now have the right scale to push the service. We are confident about our proposition.”

Nichols said Nokia will be featuring applications and its other internet services more heavily going forward to promote the brand as a hardware manufacturer as well as a leader in the internet services market.

Nichols said: “For election day we ran an advertising campaign highlighting the news media applications and now we have launched the Ovi Maps campaign. The public will see more of this from us.”

As part of Nokia’s acquisition of Navteq, the manufacturer made the APIs open for developers, enabling its retail partners and networks to create location-based applications and white label satnav systems. Nichols said Nokia will be announcing tire one brand partnerships imminently.