Blackberry marketing deal boosts Norwich tech firm

Proxama's chief executive, Neil Garner, left, and managing director, Miles Quitmann, who are introducing near field technology with smart phones. Picture: Denise Bradley

A Norwich-based technology company is playing a key role in a marketing strategy for mobile-phone giant Blackberry to boost the profile of its latest smartphone.

Proxama has forged a partnership with marketing agency Experience Worldwide to deliver an interactive promotional campaign for the Z10 smartphone, as Blackberry looks to bounce back from low sales and relinquish Samsung and Apple's grip on the mobile phone market.

The UK-wide sales strategy will use Proxama's TapPoint near-field communications (NFC), which will allow people with Blackberry market phones to tap a square on a sales poster in order to receive an electronic reward.

The TapPoint technology will also allow the marketing agency to track how well the campaign is doing by providing statistics such as the number and location of taps, comparable data, and where the rewards have been distributed.

It comes as the firm, which has offices in Norwich and New York, is currently pushing the company internationally at the Mobile World Congress in Barcelona, as part of what bosses have described as a key year for investment in NFC technology.

Miles Quitmann, managing director at Proxama, which employs more than 60 staff across its two offices, said: 'It's great that Blackberry is making NFC a major component of its promotional campaign for the new Z10. NFC comes to life when you are able to demonstrate it direct to consumers, so by featuring it in its field campaign across the UK, many people are going to come into contact with NFC.

'We believe that this is exactly the exposure NFC needs, to attract the interest of the public. Blackberry has long been an advocate of NFC, so it's unsurprising that they are using NFC in this way.'

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Neil Garner, chief executive of Proxama, who will be showcasing the TapPoint technology at the Barcelona trade fair, said: 'The Mobile World Congress has become a really important event for us to showcase the variety of commercial opportunities that NFC presents.

'This year not only do we have our own stand but a number of the projects we are working on are being showcased on our partners' stands. 2013 promises to be the year when the mobile, financial and marketing industries invest significant resources into developing NFC initiatives that will become part of people's everyday lives.'