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Joining GM, BMW is ready to embrace social media, as demonstrated by The Ramp, their recently launched campaign to promote the new 1-Series.

BMW seems to be testing the powers of viral by leveraging new media marketing tactics. In addition to marketing on Facebook and hosting a "Miss Ramp" contest (some of the entries are scary!), part of the campaign involves the viral YouTube video seen above. It's a spoof documentary for Rampenfest, a made-up event in the make-believe Bavarian town of Oberpfaffelbachen, which also has its own blog and fake mayor.

"To celebrate the launch of the new BMW 1-Series in America, we have constructed a gigantisch Ramp to launch a BMW 1-Series into America," the faux city blog says. "Our ramp stands an impressive 454 meters – tall enough to launch a 300-horsepower 1-Series over the Atlantic and into America!"

To market the new car, they'll be spending 50% of their ad budget online, vs. their regular 1-15%. As the car is being sold for under $30,000, BMW seems to be targeting a younger, less affluent demographic, so choosing the web seems a logical approach.