Everyone uses their smartphones to listen to music these days, so when Sony were designing their lastest mp3 player, they knew they had to come out with something a smart phone can’t do. They came up with a waterproof mp3 player (part of their W series walkman) that is wireless and can be worn whilst swimming. Developling something unique is all well and good, but it needs to be seen by the people who are most likely to buy it. This is where the genius comes in to play.

In New Zealand Sony employed advertising agency DraftFCB to come up with a way to make sure that their new waterproof mp3 players won’t be ignored. Say hello to the bottled walkman.


Sony has placed their walkman inside a bottle of water and are being sold in vending machines across gyms in New Zealand. That’s pretty much a fail proof way of ensuring it’s sold where the target customer is instead of sitting behind a counter at a Sony store. It’ll be pretty hard to ignore the mp3 player inside the bottled water next to the bottle of gatorade and cans of Coke at the vending machine.

Watch it in action:

The mp3 player costs around $100 and can hold up to 4gb of music. You can charge it for a short period of time (3 minutes) whilst you’re on the run and it can last for 90 minutes of playtime. If you charge it for 3 hours it’ll reach up to 8 hours. It can go up to 2 metres of water (perfect for the pool) and it’s also sweat free for other types of workouts at the gym.

Here’s what the advertising agency DraftFCB had to say about it:
-when sony briefed us on the ‘W’ series sports walkman, its first wearable, wire-free, and waterproof mp3 player, it quickly became clear that swimmers were our ideal target
 We needed to get it somewhere swimmers couldn’t ignore it – right where they needed it the most. so we hijacked something they’ll find in every fitness centre the world over: vending machines. in order to do this, we placed the product in bottled water, something else every swimmer needs, and in doing so created the perfect product demonstration.
– By combining the product with bottled water, we’ve created a world first — the Bottled Walkman. This simple packaging innovation gave us a unique way to display the product, which instantly demonstrated its benefit.
– it also transformed the humble vending machine into a conversation starter and a distribution channel, allowing swimmers to buy the product as easily as they’d buy a bottle of water.

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