From launching new car models to key motor journalists and high-value customers, to generating 6,000 test-drives over one weekend, to selling cars to new and existing customers, to achieving a 20% response rate for aftersales servicing, and engaging with Independent Motor Traders for parts sales, Direct Mail proves how it can deliver time and time again.
Seat Finance (Volkswagen Bank): For YOUR eyes only!
Showcasing all that is possible with well-targeted direct mail, this campaign ticks all the boxes of best practice direct marketing. Targeting car sales with a very specific segment of the SEAT Finance database, it tailored an offer specifically to the recipients' known wants and needs. It then set about executing a highly creative campaign that immediately captured the imagination of the recipient, generated qualified responses and more importantly, lead directly to sales that could be tracked back to this campaign based on unique tracking codes. The creative execution left nothing to chance with every detail of the execution tying together the over-arching 'Top Secret - for your eyes only' creative theme. This theme was devised to communicate that the recipient had been hand picked (with a select few others) for this offer, which was not available to the public (therefore, top secret).
Karmann Volkswagen: Service Reminder Campaign
Karmann Volkswagen opened its doors in April 2012 as the new name of Volkswagen in North Dublin. The new business came with a database of over 15,000 customers with the previous owner trading as a Volkswagen dealership for 15 years. Customers due their annual service were previously targeted with an A4 reminder letter which was sent out monthly. Karmann continued this process for quarter 2 of 2012 but moved to sending the letters out weekly combined with a follow-up call made by the in-house Customer Contact Centre (CCC). The campaign was reviewed at the beginning of quarter 3, a conversion rate of 16.9% was achieved. Feedback from the CCC agents noted a high proportion of customers did not recall the letter or could not remember receiving it. It was decided that to improve the conversion rate, the direct mail piece needed to be visually pleasing with a simple message that could instantly be understood. The redesign of the marketing piece also provided an opportunity to introduce the brand 'Karmann' to our newly acquired customer base. It was decided to move to an attractive postcard style reminder, featuring the message 'Book Now, it's time to get your car serviced'. The message was now much simpler, direct and could be understood in seconds. The introduction of the postcard meant there was no longer the additional cost of an envelope and gift of a keyring, a saving of €1.50 per piece. The aim of the campaign was to increase Karmann's conversion rate from 16.9% to over 20%, improve the brand image and awareness while also reducing the cost of contact. Karmann's service reminder postcard achieved a conversion rate of 19.8% and the campaign is now in operation in both Pilsen Auto (Skoda dealership) and AutoDynamic (SEAT dealership).
Toyota: See it. Drive it. Win it
Agency: Javelin Direct
Quarter 4 of every year represents a vital period for any car marque. It is 'consideration' period, the time when anyone thinking of buying a new car researches on and offline. Advertising spend at this time is aggressive and each marque needs to find a way to cut through. Toyota and it's agency in 2011 created a promotional thought - 'See it. Drive it. Win it.' - inviting potential buyers over a single weekend to test drive a new Yaris, Auris Hybrid and Avensis, with one of those cars then being handed over to a person that took it for a test drive as a prize. It was important to show the cars, talk about the promotion, talk about financing, and critically, recruit new prospects into dealerships. Direct Mail was the leading medium, highly targeted to existing drivers via data analysis and segmentation and also unaddressed mail for conquest. In short nearly 6,000 test drives were sought over that weekend, over 100 per dealer. An extraordinary success for Toyota.
Lexus IS F Launch
Agency: RMG Target
With the launch of the Lexus IS F, Lexus was attempting to enter the lucrative luxury sports saloon market which was dominated by the likes of BMW, Mercedes and Audi. In order to meet their objectives, Lexus required a launch event that could speak equally well to its new target audience without in any way alienating the existing Lexus customer base. In a first for the brand, Lexus ran a Direct Marketing campaign for a car launch that was executed exclusively below the line. The campaign was designed to allow the target audience to experience the car for themselves and recognise the inherent appeal of a vehicle that could switch from a superbly engineered everyday road car to a thrilling high performance track bred vehicle. The direct mail piece served as an invitation with a branded leather box that teased with the line, ‘You may be needing these’. The reveal was a little tongue in cheek, adding some humour by revealing 2 balls of steel! The idea being that while the car may look like a typical Lexus, it performs like a thoroughbred race car. Drive it if you dare! The launch was a huge success and was heavily over subscribed. At a max capacity of 120 people over 3 days, the event was full on each of the three days. 20 key motor writers were invited and the ISF launch was featured in seven pieces of national coverage, two trade publications and three online car specific sites. This generated circulation of 1.4m with an advertising equivalent value of €76k and PR value of €229k.
Henry Ford & Son: Go for a Spin in Vegas
Independent Motor Traders (IMT) are critical to the success of Ford in the spare parts market. If they don't recognise the value of using genuine Ford parts, then sales of Ford parts will suffer hugely. The starting point in seeking to target this audience was to conduct on-the-ground research into their working environment. Using the output from this research, the 'Go for a Spin in Vegas' promotion was developed. Not only did it seek to develop a real sense of sizzle by capitalising on the pulling power of Las Vegas, but it also went to extreme lengths to put the IMT's at the centre of the campaign, letting them see themselves as valued Ford partners, rather than the forgotten men that many of the believed themselves to be. Apart from the trip to Vegas, the high impact direct mail campaign also offered the opportunity to collect Ford tokens that could be exchanged for a range of exciting prizes. Because IMT's don't work in a conventional environment, which might include a desk, all material was designed to be pinned on walls as a constant reminder to participate on an ongoing basis. The results were unprecedented. Entries to the competition increased by over 200% over the previous year's direct marketing campaign (20 times the objective) and sales of Ford parts increased by 7%.