The Meaningful Challenge:
The speed Kia has moved from a value proposition to a sophisticated modern
manufacturer is impressive. The problem is consumers’ long held perceptions of the
brand lag behind the product reality; this combined with low model familiarity meant Kia
experiences poor levels of brand consideration. With no major new launches in 2013
and ambitious sales targets across all models we had to think creatively.
Over the previous 12 months, the automotive path to purchase has changed
significantly; consumers now research cars in far more depth online than ever before
meaning they are incredibly well informed about individual models ‘warts and all’ before
heading to a dealership. While trust in advertising is generally waning, peer to peer
recommendation and consumer reviews are increasingly influential – but so far no car
brand had exploited this shift. Kia pride themselves on high levels of customer
satisfaction and were the first to sign up to an independent post purchase survey, with
impressive scores across all their models. Our Eureka moment – how can we use our
satisfied customer data in a large integrated media campaign that would rapidly improve
brand opinion and consideration to boost web visits and sales conversion?
The big idea:
A world media first for the automotive industry; Kia confidently and transparently
published and publicised un-filtered real Kia customer reviews with a clear call to action
encouraging consumers to read them for themselves. Through media we integrated the
power of genuine online customer reviews across our paid, owned and earned channels
- deployed to give consumers a seamless convenient customer experience from off line
media to PC, tablet and mobile device to find out more from real Kia customers
encouraging new customers to re-consider Kia for themselves.
We selected a partner, the Telegraph, with a proven record at driving strong results for
They provided great synergy with our target audience in terms of gender, age, profile, as
well as their attitude to motoring, such as, 56% of Kia’s audience and 51% of the
Telegraph’s are worried about pollution caused by cars, and 63% of Kia’s audience and
59% of Telegraph readers are interested in their car, and have a lot to do with it.
Partnering with the Telegraph enabled us to efficiently add incremental coverage to our
planned digital & print schedules, +2% and +11% respectively, and enabled us to unlock
significant trading efficiencies for our planned offline campaign.
We dominated the Telegraph’s full cross platform portfolio with impactful formats,
providing their readers and users access to a wealth of Kia consumer reviews however
and where ever, they chose to engage.
Early chequerboard formats within the paper, early full page insertions in their Saturday
supplement, non-standard HPTOs, mobile takeovers and full page interactive tablet
insertions introduced Kia’s range of models and their review concept.
The digital elements of the partnership included a direct call to action, enabling people to
click straight through to Kia’s review site.
And a series of advertorials held within the Telegraph’s motoring section were designed
to hero Kia car owners and document their reviews of their Kia’s in a personal and
engaging manner. These advertorials hi-jacked the Telegraph’s Festival of Motoring
themes, which saw them focus on different types of car within their motoring section
each week, by mimicking the themes (i.e. when the Telegraph focused on
Sportswagon’s we hero’d a cee’d Sportswagon car owner’s story).
Our partnership enabled us to follow consumers during the various stages of their
purchase cycle, from consideration, to exploration, to purchase, and to further
We negotiated a cross platform package which included print, tablet, mobile, and digital
activations and represented a significant discount off standard trading rates.
The activity drove just under 36,000 clicks within a week, performing with an average
CTR 639% higher than the market average.
This partnership contributed to Kia’s strongest Q1 performance to date, with dealer
searches up 72% YoY and registrations up 12% YoY.