Pages

Showing posts with label Auto show. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Auto show. Show all posts

Monday, March 25, 2013

Video Recap of Geneva Auto Show Social Media Activations


I woke up this morning to a pitch on my twitter account.  Unlike most 'hey can you post this on your blog,' requests this one is pretty good.  There are some good examples of social media activations happening at the Auto Show including uses from Nissan, Hyundai and Mercedes-Benz. There's even a little dig at Citroen who allows for email sharing only on a build application they have on the floor.

Anyway, thanks to Patrick Sweeney for some good content.

Oh and here's the pitch (and yes I'm following @PJSweeney now on Twitter.


ShareThis

Monday, January 14, 2013

Honda Advertises on the Associate Press Twitter Feed



There was an interesting revenue tactic last week by the Associated Press when technology company Samsung advertised on the AP's twitter feed during CES.  AdWeek immediately covered the story, since there is some discussion about AP blurring the line of between "editorial church and state."

Another week and another big industry event, this time the North American International Auto Show (NAIAS) in Detroit and sure enough the AP's Twitter account is again posting sponsored tweets this time for Honda and Acura. Both posts featured the upcoming concepts the brands were featuring to interest AP's 1.5 million twitter followers.

This is an interesting tactic since one can assume a lot of media from other publications follow AP on Twitter.  If a brand can get their news to journalists in a quick way through what could be seen as a target media buy to a difficult to reach audience - reporters, this may not be all that bad of a tactic. Unless it backfires as crossing some line as some commenters on Twitter have expressed.

What will be telling is how long this lasts.  It could be seen by Twitter as a challenge to their own advertising model.  If Twitter accounts start selling their tweets directly to brands, this could usurp some ad dollars from the company providing the community and with a looming Twitter IPO on the way this probably won't last long.

-----

If you want to hear some more on this topic, checkout this week's BeanCast Marketing podcast that I was a panel member on. We discuss this topic in depth as well as several other current marketing and social media topics.


ShareThis

Thursday, August 11, 2011

Will RFID be at Every Auto Show Display Next Year?



Radio-Frequency Identification (RFID) Facebook status updates are becoming the rage in social media event activations with the latest incarnation coming from Mercedes-Benz sponsorship of this year's PGA Championship in Atlanta, Georgia.



Recently Renault did something similar with RFID at an auto show last April which leaves me wondering if RFID Facebook updates are the next must have accessory for the coming 2012 auto show season? I'm willing to bet they are and with brands looking to activate what happens at an event to share in the digital world, RFID Facebook integration is a great way to extend a brand's investment in event sponsorships by reaching a person's online community too.

The question then is should the kiosks featured in the Renault and Mercedes-Benz examples be configured to support the entire event, where one can register a pass for the auto show and share across multiple brand stations? Or will an attendee after register at each brand kiosk to do whatever that brand wants the experience to be?



We'll probably see several of these RFID registration kiosks from a handful of brands; instead, of a more elegant register once with the event organizer - yeah I'm talking to you North American International Auto Show, New York Auto Show, and Los Angeles too.

No matter what happens, event planning teams across the automotive industry certainly are seeing these examples and the media coverage they are getting and will likely follow suit. So be ready to link your Facebook profile to a RFID card.




ShareThis

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Nissan Blows Smoke at NYIAS Cars, Even Its Own



This is a great out of home billboard from the recent New York International Auto Show (NYIAS) done by TBWA\Chiat\Day LA for Nissan. It's a great way to make a strong selling point for the Nissan LEAF.

The LEAF, of course, is Nissan's all-electric vehicle and while the rest of Nissan's own floor at the auto show blows a lot of smoke around, the billboard still makes an excellent point about what differentiates the LEAF from competitors, including its strongest competitor right now the Chevy Volt. The Volt still has a gasoline engine and is not a full-EV (Electric Vehicle) so the point is still a valid one as these two battle it out.

Nice work here and thanks to AdLand.tv for blogging about it. Credit goes to this post.


ShareThis

Thursday, April 1, 2010

Jeep and Nissan Take to the Streets of New York



With Day Two of the New York Auto Show, there were a couple of public street installations out in New York. The first was a giant sand pit erected by the Jeep marketing team for a 7am five person dig to see who from Jeep’s Tweet-to-Win Twitter contest would find a small Tiki Idol and win a Jeep Wrangler Islander edition. The other installation comes from the Nissan marketing team to promote their Journey to Zero website.

I decided to follow the Jeep contest thanks to a web link they provided to watch the event on a live web feed. Unfortunately, I had to create an account to view the feed and there was no chat offering, which has become pretty standard for live webcast events. Also, it was unclear how many people watched the live feed but at 7am and with few people at the live event, besides some media and a bunch of Jeep PR people it was probably a small gathering online too, not that any event like this attracts a lot of people for any brand.

The video with the most views from the dig on Jeep’s YouTube channel had 80 views when I looked late this afternoon. Though, they did get some nice coverage from the Detroit Free Press and the Naples News too.

The bigger news from Jeep is that this was the kickoff of their next giveaway. Mike Manley, President and CEO of the Jeep brand, mentioned at this morning’s event that Jeep is giving away three more Jeep Wrangler Islander Editions as they place three Tiki Idols in hidden spots across the United States. Tips to where they are will be made available through a site he said was live this morning, unfortunately the JeepTikiHunt.com site is still not live and I will continue to check it to see how the site is laid out and communicates the contest. So stay tuned for an update on that.

Environment to be Saved By Zero

Nissan, however, has their website live for the Journey to Zero marketing campaign. This is in alignment with Nissan’s coming LEAF all electric vehicle that is changing the mobility equation. Visitors can get to the LEAF U.S. and Japanese websites through the About section of this campaign site.

The site features TED organizer and speaker Richard Saul Wurman. Content is all about a world with zero CO2 emissions and what that means to global environmental impact.

This one completely missed my radar even though I’ve been to the Nissan LEAF website, I’m part of the email curriculum for the campaign, and belong to their Facebook and Twitter communities. I’m really not sure how one finds out about this effort and judging by the views on the campaign’s YouTube Channel, not many others found out about it either; though, a Fast Company blogger did. Perhaps more will get to know about it as they wonder the streets of New York where Nissan has several rows of front and back seats ironically lined on a city bike path with a sign promoting the Journey to Zero message.

Looking at the web experience the campaign was probably marketed to niche creatives and greens who might have the patience to put up with the frustrating web experience that causes the page to float everywhere as one’s mouse is moved across the page. The navigation also is hard to use as it appears and disappears quickly if one doesn’t hold one’s mouse to the most left area of the page.

Fortunately some people did take the time to use the site and even enter a contest called “Inspired by Zero” that had artists submit works to express the idea of zero emissions. Winners have already been chosen with prizing being a couple cameras and an Apple MacBook Pro.

The site also features some social media outreach functionality allowing visitors to add flair to their Facebook pages or images to their Twitter profiles. One can even create their own poster to save and email to all their friends.

I wonder if anyone actually did any of this? It all goes back to consumer value and the site's social graffiti really doesn't have much of a benefit beyond promoting the Nissan site, which is really to Nissan's benefit not the site visitor's benefit.

Seeing how little was done to promote this site it and the effort launched over three months ago without much fanfare, maybe Nissan is now trying to breathe some life into the effort on the trendy streets of New York City causing the hip the take notice of how the LEAF is environmentally acceptable for our world.

- Photo of Journey to Zero seats on streets of New York City used by permission from AsianMartin.com
ShareThis

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Volvo Wants You to be Naughty



The new Volvo S60 is sexy. You heard me right, a Volvo can be sexy with its smooth, flowing lines. I saw the concept car last year here in Detroit and it was the most interesting, beautifully designed Volvo since the P1800. Fortunately the production version of the concept from the 2009 show has remained pretty much intact to become the 2011 Volvo S60.

Yes it is sexy, but is it really naughty? Volvo’s marketing team thinks so. They had some fun prior to the car’s debut today in Geneva with two video teasers promoting the Volvo S60 reveal website: http://naughty.volvocars.com. The two preview videos were a good way to build some buzz about the vehicle’s new website and created a mental shift of thinking of a Volvo as naughty. Naughty definitely sparked some interest since it seemed so far outside of Volvo’s normal brand image of family safety.

Michael Persson, director of global marketing communications for Volvo says “The all-new Volvo S60 is a particularly dynamic car with an exciting design and innovative safety features… We are showing what it can actually do and just how much fun it is to drive.”

The Naughty Volvo Cars website features a couple videos of the S60 aggressively driving in some empty road slaloms. One of the tests is an Elk Test that demonstrates “the S60’s amazing responsiveness in an emergency maneuver.”

After watching the tests the website viewer can submit ideas to make the Elk Test “even naughtier, more playful.” Users are asked to submit ideas with the top five ideas going up for a group vote with the top voted idea to be filmed by the Volvo S60 team.

Ideas are shared on a Discussion board on the Volvo brand Facebook fan page. As of today most of the ideas were not ideas at all, but instead Volvo fans asking for the return of a Volvo S60R as several enthusiasts figured a naughty Volvo implied a fast, Type R Volvo that did not happen today.

The site is pretty straightforward stuff. Navigation is clear and the video content is presented in a clean, easy-to-use format. The use of a Facebook discussion board made for an easier development schedule, but it does seem a bit disconnected since it doesn't warn the user a new window is opening and that the Facebook page is there to submit naughty ideas.

It also still isn’t entirely clear what is so naughty about the S60 after watching the videos and reading the site copy. The message feels very disconnected especially when the site asks, “want it naughty?” It just sees a bit odd for a vehicle that is probably going to sell to wealthy, middle-aged, professional men and women who buy a Volvo to protect their kids.
ShareThis

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

AutoBird Podcast – Esp15: “A Better Tomorrow?”



I had the pleasure last Sunday to be the first guest on the Autobird Podcast. The Podcast is hosted by automotive bloggers Colin Bird (@Auto_Bird) and Joel Feder (@joelfeder) both of whom I've got to know through Twitter and when they have visited Detroit for various automotive events. Autobird covers automotive industry news, car reviews, and this last weekend we even talked about marketing.

This week covered the following topics:

* Chevrolet Malibu is a great car but sales disappoint?
* American Top Gear still Lives?
* Dodge Avenger and Chrysler Sebring may get new names?

We then proceed to the clip of the week segment. This week we featured the Super Bowl commercial from Dodge – Man’s Last Stand

Last but certainly not least, we discuss our main topics. This week those topics included the Chicago Auto Show and Toyota’s a better tomorrow.

One last comment: The show image was done by Colin. He gets some sort of sick pleasure inserting people into ridiculous scenes. If you find the Photoshopped Caravaggio painting disturbing, you're not alone. The only saving grace is that Colin didn't put me in Muppet outfit like he has done to his co-host Joel.

Please checkout Joel and Colin's blogs too. They bring their own unique perspectives to the industry that are definitely worth a read.

Autobird Blog

Accelerate Minneapolis

You can listen to the show (I had a horrible Skype connection that was eventually fixed at around 33 minutes):




Download this episode (right click and save)

ShareThis

Friday, January 15, 2010

North American International Auto Show Tweetup



Back in December we had several automotive journalists come to Detroit for some product events with Ford and General Motors. This provided a great opportunity to organize a Tweetup (learn all about what a Tweetup is here if you don't know.) During the planning, one of my followers on Twitter, @Muntz_Man, contacted me about joining the event and mentioned maybe there could be another event during the auto show where the Twitter community could come to see the North American International Auto Show (NAIAS) in a more exclusive way.

What I soon found out is that Max Muncey is an Associate with the John Bailey & Associates Public Relations firm working with NAIAS. Once auto show week arrived, Max reached out again and there was a tweet from the @NAIASDetroit Twitter account inviting people to an event. I joined in as did some local social media and automotive people who attended to the first ever NAIAS Tweetup on Wednesday January 13, 2009.

The event was held a few days before the public opening and fell on one of the Industry Days. Industry days are basically what it sounds like, a time for people in the car business - engineers, designers, marketing people - to get a look at the cars and displays usually for work related reasons.

Some of the people who also attended: @wweidendorf, @HajjFlemings, @becksdavis, @MaureenFrancis, @kayleehawkins, @redcrew, @darealchrisree, @richardsession, @AshleySFlintoff, @freeismylife, @jennilewis

The Show

The show itself is great. Far better than last year where GM and Chrysler were held up by a shoestring as Presidential administrations were changing and George W. Bush had only given the auto companies enough to survive day-to-day.

This year the displays are bigger and better with a strong presence by Ford Motor Company and a surprisingly elaborate display from the Chrysler Group; even though, Sergio Marchionne supposedly doesn't see much value in auto show marketing.

Of course, there are not the crazy, design exploration concept cars of years back. Today most manufacturers show "concepts" that are basically 90% completed production vehicles. The one concept that did impress and was a bit more of a study than reality is the Audi E-Tron concept. It is beautiful.

Product Specialists on Twitter

One interesting note to this year's auto show is a new thing Ford, Lincoln, Mercury is trying with giving product specialists their own Twitter accounts. You can view their accounts at Sam DeLaGarza's Twitter List; Sam is the Ford Fiesta Brand Manager.

Bringing product specialists from an auto show to Twitter is definitely something new. We'll have to see if it catches on and becomes an unique way to engage with the show online; though, I do worry it also becomes a platform to be "that guy."

If you want a less corporate perspective from the product specialists, checkout a new blog and Twitter account (@DYCWTC) from an anonymous GM auto show model. Her post on "Grandpas" is an interesting take on what it's like to be trapped by the Greatest Generation.

NAIAS opens to the public tomorrow and has its final day on January 24th. If you are in town, it is definitely worth checking out. I go 2 or 3 every year and will probably even head out again for a public day thanks to some free tickets Mercedes-Benz sent me.
ShareThis

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Audi and Infiniti Debut New Vehicles on Facebook


A lot is going on when it’s Auto Show week. With the Los Angeles Auto Show in full swing, automakers were looking for ways to involve those who couldn’t visit the land of swimmin’ pools and movie stars.

Audi and Infiniti decided to bring their reveal events online to the popular social networking site Facebook. The Infiniti event was an online look into the reveal happening in conjunction with the LA Auto Show. The Audi event was held on the opposite coast in Miami with some additional corporate promotion. Both events used the same template construct with a live video feed and Facebook chat.

Audi’s Miami Talk Show

“Since our inception, Audi has embraced progress in the quest to create groundbreaking technologies and deliver new ideas to the road. Just as artists make it a mission to work for the untold future, so does Audi design to be relevant not just today, but for many years to come,” said Rupert Stadler, Chairman of the Board of Management, Audi AG

That statement is representative of how painful it was to watch the Audi A8 reveal on Facebook last Monday evening. Just imagine that language repeated ad nauseam for 30 minutes and you'll understand why the chat participants on Facebook started to get a bit rowdy.

The event started nicely enough with TV and film star Lucy Liu welcoming everyone to the event and sharing how Audi is entrenched in design and why they were making the U.S. debut of the new Audi A8 at the Art Basel Miami Beach.

A welcoming is nice and expected, but then things got a bit weird. Lucy invited several people up to discuss design and the Miami community’s commitment to art. The discussion went on and on and on like a Sergio Marchionne press event. Chat participants started mocking the Miami community, Lucy Liu, and were getting very frustrated with Audi wasting everyone’s time talking about things they didn’t care about. I was personally waiting for an artistic discussion on chiaroscuro and its meaning in Hieronymus Bosch’s “Garden of Earthly Delight”.

Eventually Audi revealed the A8, but it was too much of wait for me personally as I had things to do with my family that evening. My wife’s patience was really being tried and well she wins. I caught the photos of the car on Jalopnik that evening and everything looked pretty good and mostly followed the Sport Back Concept Audi showed last January at the Detroit Auto Show.

Infiniti Shows Us How It’s Done

Last night was the second Facebook vehicle reveal, this time from Infiniti. They showed off some minor changes to the G sedan and were mainly promoting the unveiling of the 2011 Infiniti M.

Maybe Infiniti watched the chat discussion from Audi’s event and decided it was best to keep things on topic. They welcomed everyone sans celebrity, showed off the G sedan, then briefly talked about the key message for the M, and pulled the car cover off the new M. All of this took 16 minutes from start to finish. It was short and sweet.

Conversation at the Infiniti event mainly stayed on topic, because it was respectful of people’s time. Most importantly the presentation was all about the cars. Simple. Effective.

While companies may want to make their online reveal more of an event by having a celebrity host and tying it in with some philanthropic effort, it is best to keep the event to the reason why people came. Watching something like this on the web is not the same as being trapped in a seat at a Miami auditorium. Internet users can come and go very easily. Plus they didn't get any hors d'uvres or have an incentive to stay for a picture with a Charlie's Angel.
ShareThis

Thursday, September 24, 2009

Audi's e-tron Concept Hopefully Not the Future of Website Navigation


I wonder if some sites ever went through usability testing. The Audi e-tron concept website definitely suffers from some significant design issues. First of all it contains no obvious cues about what one gets when clicking on the icon based navigation elements.

There are four key video content elements in the right-hand navigation featuring futurist diagrams and computer-generated imagery (CGI). Navigation includes design, technology, the intelligent automobile, and interior concept all visually demonstrating the e-tron’s features. The problem is each link is a tilted image not easily showing what the image is or what one sees when it is clicked on. In fact, the titled image navigation doesn't even seem like a navigation, you only know because your mouse changes its icon.

One demonstration is a nod to a future interior concept that seems very close to what might happen in the next few years. For example, a “Streets of Tomorrow” demonstration shows how the navigation of the future will tell us when we need milk as we are passing a grocery store. I think I heard this idea in 1998, but hey it still has never been done and people keep suggesting it. Telling me it is an idea no one wants, but keeps coming up in brainstorming or there is some technical barrier, I'm guessing the former. Another example is the car diagnostic system showing actual psi ratings of the tires is far more advanced than the Tire Pressure Monitoring Systems (TPMS) of today.

The footer of the site features a share on Facebook, a 360 view and a film of the product unveiling at the Frankfurt Auto Show. Another link shows the conversation that is ongoing across multiple social network properties featuring a count of YouTube, Flickr, Twitter and blogs covering the vehicle. The conversation section is very well executed and makes for an interesting way to showcase social dialog. This technique is becoming a standard approach as it was recently featured on the TDI site Audi recently launched.

When a social conversation is selected, Audi returns a very nice card that shows the social media content and allows the user to view it on its source site or one can Tweet the content if they so wish. The execution is very nice and one of the best implementations of social media content integration and sharing I have seen. Audi truly is on to showing all sites a very effective to show buzz and allow further sharing through a clean, well-designed interface.

It’s too bad that the Audi e-tron site suffers from some difficult navigation. Some proper usability testing would have corrected many of the apparent issues here. Of course, I haven’t put the site through testing, but having done testing on many sites in my decade plus experience, I’m sure the site would have some major hurdles for all but the technically adept or ultra-patient.

The big message here is the electric engine in an Audi R8 and whether Audi will really ever build an electric super car, especially after Audi President of North America Johan de Nysschen recently called anyone who buys a Chevy Volt a car for idiots.

Where the Audi campaign really shines isn’t this site. The really great work are the viral videos that were created to promote the electricityuntamed.com site. There is a YouTube Channel housing three videos produced to launch the e-tron concept. All three are performing very well for a concept launch. The videos are getting over around 200,000 views each, which may sound low, but relative to most automotive content of similar nature the numbers are pretty good.

It’s great having this amount of content for a concept vehicle. Few concept vehicles get this much attention and I'm sure the agency, Venables Bell & Partners, had a great time concepting the effort. We had a similar effort done for our Lincoln C Concept car at the 2009 International Auto Show and it was very well received. I think car companies can benefit by extending the concept experience to a digital space, especially when the vehicle showcases some compelling exterior and interior design elements and technology advancements. The only caution with all of this futuristic design is that website navigation is still constrained to the usability best practices of today and designers should consider the aggravation complex site navigation can cause the average visitor.

Be cool, just don't be difficult.
ShareThis

Saturday, June 13, 2009

What I'm Doing Father's Day in Southeast Michigan


I was born and raised on the West coast, Los Angeles and Portland to be exact. Portland is not a car culture city. It's idea of driving is seeing if your 1976 Volvo sedan can get you 9 miles to work and back. Los Angeles definitely is a city in love with the automobile -- Hollywood, cruising, classics, tuners, rice-boys, you name it LA has it.

The Motor City is the root of America's love for the automobile and it is one of the reasons why I feel so at home here in Michigan after leaving LA back in the early 1990s. Detroit has some amazing car events and this coming Father's Day is no exception.

The Edsel & Eleanor Ford House in Grosse Pointe Shores, Michigan is hosting the EyesOn Design Automotive Show. This year the event is focusing on The Art of the Automobile Advertising & Design, a fitting topic for someone interested in cars and advertising. I'll be sure to take a lot of photos and share what I can next week on this blog.

So, if you live in this great city, come on out to the show. At least the weather is better than the mid-January International Auto Show we host and it probably won't be as hot as the early August Meadowbrook Concours d'Elegence, another great classic car show at the Dodge Family Estate in Rochester Hills, Michigan.

Times for the EyesOn Design show are 10am - 4:30pm Sunday June 21. Hope to see you there!
ShareThis

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Going Bankrupt? Just Smile


From The New York Times: "We get a lot of, ‘You’re going out of business,’ ‘You guys are going bankrupt,’ ” said Shannon Melahn, part of the Chrysler presenting team. She shrugged and added, “We just smile.”

It must be a difficult time to be an automotive spokesmodel. I'm sure it is in New York City as they are in the midst of their annual show this week. The New York Times is reporting some of the tribulations models have incurred while trying to showcase new products at Chrysler and General Motors displays.

I attended the Detroit Auto Show last January, two public days and one supplier day, but heard no heckling from the Michigan crowds. Not that it didn't happen, but for some reason it doesn't surprise me in a climate of a new round of bailouts, rising unemployment, and an always opinionated New York population, GM and Chrysler are finding some strange outbursts from show visitors.

My personal favorite, "One G.M. presenter said a woman told her the company was responsible for the death of American soldiers in Iraq. The logic went like this: if G.M. made more fuel-efficient cars, the country would not need so much oil, and if the country did not need oil, United States troops would never have invaded." Yeah, I don't think people like this "woman" really understand the costs of electric vehicles, their unproven long-term durability, and the mass consumption of electric cars it would take to significantly reduce our dependance on foreign oil."

Oh well, I do feel sorry for the attractive women and men having to market the products at the show this year. Maybe GM should just have Bob Lutz be the spokesmodel, while Chrysler's Jim Press crouches behind a Fiat 500?
ShareThis