What has been of interest to me these past few weeks?
The Mercedes-Benz #YouDrive campaign featuring Kane Robinson (aka Kano) and Wendy Glenn in the A-Class, which was broadcasted during the X-Factor on October 6th was rather interesting, in that Mercedes attempting to capture younger customers than their usual middle-age, mid- to high income earning business executive or CEO. Using a social media campaign mainly through twitter and YouTube, the story focuses on a young music star (Kano) trying to make it to a secret gig with the assistance of a female ally (Glenn) under hot pursuit by the authorities determination to shut it down, leading to a cat-and-mouse chase through the city.
Mercedes also used the hashtag #youdrive to let users of these platforms to interact with users of the social platforms to decide the outcome of the story, with the hashtag prompts such #hide or #evade and #decoy or #ride to engage and involve viewers with the advert, along with a competition relating to details within the advert giving users the chance to win a new A-Class for a year.
What’s clear to me is that Mercedes wants to compete directly with Audi and BMW with this product, as they have a greater share of younger customers than Mercedes, which is in part down to their branding, image and product ranges (The Audi TT was the car of choice of the So Solid Crew after all). The move by Mercedes by picking a slot during the X-Factor, choosing Robinson of ‘Top Boy’ fame and the involvement of twitter and youtube is a clear indication of the focus on a ‘younger, more dynamic Mercedes-Benz brand’ according to David George, Marketing Director of Mercedes-Benz UK.
Will this help to capture new customers for Mercedes? Only time will tell, especially when considering current market conditions and the performance of their competitors. Whatever happens, I believe this is a bold move for Mercedes which is a strong, classy brand that is recognisable globally. Furthermore, this campaign could be a useful insight into how social media campaigns translate into sales when comparing and contrasting data generated from these platforms in relation to the number of A-class vehicles sold.