By on December 4, 2011

Tweet! Tweet! Tweet! If you have enough followers on Twitter and the like, Chevrolet might give you a free 2012 Sonic. Not for keeps. But for 3 days. It’s the new long-term tester of the 140 character age.

According to Automotive News [sub], General Motors has hired Klout, a company that ranks a person’s “social influence.” Well, social networking influence. In the past, people with high Klout scores received free review copies of software, deodorant, or coffee. Now, they get a car.

To be eligible, you need a “Klout score” of at least 35. It’s probably too late to prostitute yourself for followers, AN says the program already began in November and runs through Dec. 14. follows a collaboration earlier this year promoting the Volt, Chevy’s $40,000 plug-in hybrid.

139 (gee, why not 140???) drives will be offered in Chicago, New York, Atlanta, Dallas and San Francisco. All it costs GM is four or five Sonics on loan in each of the five cities.

The twitterati better be careful. A Federal Trade Commission guideline requires bloggers and social-media agents to disclose when writing about products they’ve gotten for free. It’s nice that the FTC has followed an example TTAC has set since day one.


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18 Comments on “@PPL W/ #Klout: Free 3 Day #Sonic Frm #@GM...”

  • avatar

    Only twitter twits with lots of followers? They and other social media don’t generate news, they go viral with news generated elsewhere. They’d have done better to make the offer to contributors to auto web sites. Let Jack Baruth, or David Karesh, or Sajeev have a Sonic for three days. Then watch the buzz, er, buzz!

  • avatar

    I think Ashton Kutcher is going to be thrilled! Now that he’s newly single he’ll be able to pick up chicks in his impressive new ride. And in Hollywood, three days is a veritable lifetime…

  • avatar

    The prize is you get a Sonic for 3 days? Before long all of us can do just that by renting at the local airport. Affordably too, as Sonic will likely slot into the lowest priced category or the next one after.

    • 0 avatar

      Most likely, and one does not have to be a twit to rent one.

    • 0 avatar

      umm, actually no, you cant rent one now. The Sonic is GM’s fastest selling car now, with only 11 days to sell after hitting the dealers lot. The average transaction price is $200 more than the fiesta, $1000 more than the New Yaris and $1300 more than the Versa. There is no way GM would be sending Sonic’s to fleets given the demand and the price premium it commands. Its no secret that the Fiesta has an ATP higher than the Corolla and Civic, so the Sonic must too.

  • avatar

    Three days seems like an awfully short time if you actually have to do something to uh… “earn the privilege” to test it.

  • avatar

    Come over to MySpace and let me Twitter on your Facebook…..

  • avatar

    “A Federal Trade Commission guideline requires bloggers and social-media agents to disclose when writing about products they’ve gotten for free.”

    Whether the test drive is 3 minutes or 3 days, what actual “product” has anyone “gotten for free”?

  • avatar

    Actually the third place finisher gets the sonic for 3 days; second gets it for 2; and the winner, one day.

  • avatar

    A Federal Trade Commission guideline requires bloggers and social-media agents to disclose when writing about products they’ve gotten for free.

    It’s funny. The FTC requires disclosure but in the online world you can use your soapbox for more than just getting swag. A link from a popular website almost directly translates into increased revenue. When Glenn Reynolds at Instapundit links to one of my posts at Cars In Depth, traffic can go up almost 1000%. That almost invariably means more Adsense revenue.

    Speaking of which, folks, if you like a website, click on their Adsense ads. It doesn’t cost you anything and the site gets paid for every click.

  • avatar

    I’d rather be grounded for 3-days than drive a car thats only good for sky-diving.

  • avatar


    Sorry, I will click on ads that attract my interest, but Not adsense nor any ad that pops up and fills my entire screen.

    Ads that are intrusive like both of those are, or the videos that autoplay. I automatically ignore and am much more likely to find some alternative. But I definitely won’t be clicking on them.

    Sadly, we are more and more inundated with them and no matter how much I’d like to avoid them. They are here, doesn’t mean I will use them or support their use.

    • 0 avatar

      Why not Adsense? I’m not thrilled about Google as a company, but Adsense is one of the few ways that web publishers, particularly small independent ones, can make money from a site. A 250×250 box in a side column or a 460×60 banner below the headline of a post is hardly intrusive. Much of the time, the Adsense ads on my site are just text ads. That’s about as unintrusive as an ad can be.

      I share your feelings about popups and autoplays and I don’t have anything like that on my site, but as a publisher, one has to be able to monetize a site. It costs site visitors nothing to click on an ad, and they’re getting content for free. What other way can you show gratitude to a site that you enjoy?

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