Do you want to test-drive the 2012 Sonic as a “perk” for exerting your social influence? You can do just that if you have a "Klout score" of at least 35. General Motors’ volume division has teamed up with Klout, the service that gives a rate and a rank to a person's "social influence." This is the second time in 2011 that the two companies have come together. Earlier this year, they partnered to promote the Chevrolet Volt, its $40,000 plug-in hybrid.
Klout runs a type of sampling program for the Web 2.0 era. The samples or “perks” may be software or coffee but in this case, the 2012 Sonic may be driven for three days. Klout is being paid by Chevrolet an unknown amount to arrange three-day loans of the 2012 Sonic, its American-made subcompact. The program started last November but runs only until Dec. 14.
Chevrolet spokeswoman Cristi Vazquez said that 20 Klout participants were able to drive the Volt. All except one posted favorable blogs about the car. Those who participated generated around 2,000 tweets. Vasquez revealed that before the middle of December, 139 drives would be offered in Chicago, New York, Atlanta, Dallas and San Francisco.
Four or five Sonics will be provided in each of these five cities. Vasquez said that doing this is effective at disseminating the message. She said that “the best way” for people to change what they think about the company is to let them try the car themselves. In November, Sonic sales totaled 4,496. It was launched in the fall. To date, GM has sold 10,035 Sonics.