Automotive Digital IQ

  • 3,856 views
Uploaded on

 

More in: Automotive
  • Full Name Full Name Comment goes here.
    Are you sure you want to
    Your message goes here
    Be the first to comment
No Downloads

Views

Total Views
3,856
On Slideshare
0
From Embeds
0
Number of Embeds
0

Actions

Shares
Downloads
0
Comments
0
Likes
22

Embeds 0

No embeds

Report content

Flagged as inappropriate Flag as inappropriate
Flag as inappropriate

Select your reason for flagging this presentation as inappropriate.

Cancel
    No notes for slide

Transcript

  • 1. ™ Ranking the digital competence of automobile brands SCOTT GALLOWAY NYU STERN JANUARY 2010 © L2 2010 1
  • 2. January 29, 2010 NYU Stern REGISTER NOW at socialgraph.eventbrite.com Capacity is limited, so please register early JOIN THE CONVERSATION Academics and industry professionals highlight the opportunities, challenges, and AGENDA: underpinnings of social media programs in the 8:15 REGISTRATION & BREAKFAST prestige industry in L2’s one-day, intensive 9:00 MODULE 1: clinic for executives and managers: THE BIG PICTURE 10:30 (break) • The Shift 11:00 MODULE 2: (Why this demands a new culture PLATFORMS & TECHNOLOGY and way of viewing marketing) 12:30 (Lunch) 1:45 MODULE 3: • The Tools: Facebook, Twitter, SEO, Blogs BEST PRACTICES (How they work—independently and together) 3:30 (Vosges chocolate tasting) • Measuring Success 4:00 MODULE 4: PRESTIGE CASE STUDIES (From followers and friends to financial 5:15 (Snooth wine & cheese tasting) and non-financial impact) • Best Practices & Case Studies (What prestige brands are doing well and why) FACULTY SCOTT GALLOWAY TOM PHILLIPS FABIO FREYRE Founder | L2 (LuxuryLab) CEO | Media6 RVP | Facebook Clinical Associate Professor of DAVID TOKHEIM OREN MICHAELS Marketing | NYU Stern GM & EVP | Six Apart Media Blogs CEO | Mashery ERIK QUALMAN CARNET WILLIAMS MAUREEN MULLEN Author | Socialnomics CEO | Sprout Lead Researcher | L2 (LuxuryLab) AUREN HOFFMAN GREG SHOVE New speakers are being confirmed daily. CEO | Rapleaf CEO | Halogen Visit socialgraph.eventbrite.com for updates. 2
  • 3. I. INTRODUCTION .......................................... 5 II. METHODOLOGY .......................................... 6 III. RESULTS the rankings . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 7 IV. DISCOVERIES . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 10 V. FINDINGS . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 13 VI. TEAM . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 21 VII. OBSERVATIONS by brand . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 23 VALUE BRANDS . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 23 Ford . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 24 Scion . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 27 Toyota . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 30 Nissan . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 33 Honda . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 36 Mazda . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 39 Kia . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 42 Hyundai . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 45 GMC . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 48 Smart . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 51 Mitsubishi. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 54 Pontiac. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 57 Suzuki . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 60 © L2 2010 3
  • 4. PREMIUM ENTRY LEVEL BRANDS . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 62 Volkswagen . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 63 Jeep. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 66 Mini . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 69 Chevrolet . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 72 Chrysler . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 75 Dodge . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 78 Subaru . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 81 Mercury . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 84 PREMIUM BRANDS . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 87 Volvo . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 88 Infiniti . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 91 Acura . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 94 Buick . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 97 Saab . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 100 Lincoln . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 103 Hummer. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 106 LUXURY BRANDS. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 109 Audi . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 110 BMW . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 113 Mercedes-Benz . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 116 Lexus . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 119 Porsche . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 122 Cadillac . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 125 Jaguar . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 128 Land Rover . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 130 Tesla. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 132 Lotus . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 135 ULTRA-LUXURY BRANDS . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 138 Ferrari. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 139 Bentley . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 142 Aston Martin. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 145 Maserati . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 148 Rolls-Royce . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 151 Lamborghini. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 154 © L2 2010 4
  • 5. INTRODUCTION No One Is Immune much less endure the industry’s weapon of choice, the commercial. The German brands, Audi, BMW, and Although no industry is immune to the economic crisis, Mercedes, have been especially deft on the Web: taking the auto sector has been especially hard hit. The fact risks, innovating, and outselling languid competitors that recessions always end is cold comfort for many with a strategy that couples a stronger digital footprint auto companies because economic downturns can and fewer dealerships. catalyze a reconfiguration of consumer preferences. Most were caught flat-footed and are finding that doing what they’ve always done will no longer get them what L2 Digital IQ = Shareholder Value they’ve traditionally gotten. American automakers may be experiencing the greatest pain under the harsh light Our thesis is that digital aptitude will be the defining of the recession. Archaic management practices, labor competence that separates winners from losers in the constraints, slow innovation cycles, and uninspired industry. Key to managing and developing competence marketing have caused them to cede share to more deft is an actionable metric. This study attempts to quan- foreign competitors. However, with new-vehicle sales tify the U.S. digital competence of the world’s top 44 down 21 percent year-on-year, everyone has reason to automobile brands and rank them by Digital IQ. Our aim worry. Even mighty Toyota is experiencing pain. Much is to provide a robust tool to diagnose digital strengths of the industry has matched the reliability of its cars, and weaknesses and help automakers achieve greater rendering Toyota models just, well, boring. return on incremental investment. Most exciting, the data from our study demonstrates a significant correla- tion between Digital IQ and year-on year-sales revealing A Crisis Is a Terrible Thing to Waste what may be a forward-looking indicator of sales by brand for the industry. Hard times breed innovation and opportunity. In the auto industry this means disparate wagers on hybrids, electric cars, and changes to the supply chain. One Similar to the medium we are assessing, our methodol- area of innovation nearly all auto companies are em- ogy is dynamic, and we hope you will reach out to us bracing is digital. There is fruit to be reaped, but a long with comments that improve our approach, investigation road ahead. Most auto sites rely on standard navigation and findings. You can reach me at scott@stern.nyu.edu. architecture and sales funnels riddled with roadblocks, especially in the pass-off from parent site to dealership. Digital marketing efforts are often a tail-wags-dog pro- cess as decreasingly effective broadcast media strate- gies reign supreme in the board rooms filled with old men who watch TV in real time and have never been on Scott Galloway Facebook. Some automakers, however, recognize that Clinical Associate Professor, NYU Stern tomorrow’s buyer doesn’t visit dealerships on weekends Founder, L2 (LuxuryLab) © L2 2010 INTRODUCTION 5
  • 6. METHODOLOGY PLATFORM - 40% Website Effectiveness: Half the score reflects • BRAND TRANSLATION reinforcement of core brand associations and values • Aesthetics through aesthetics and content. The remaining half is • Messaging & Interactivity based on technical elements, including use of technol- • TECHNICAL SITE ELEMENTS ogy, navigability, and the commerce funnel. • Technology Integration • User Interface/Customer Service • Configurator • Dealer Interface OFF-PLATFORM MESSAGING - 25% Digital Marketing Efforts: Online advertising, • ONLINE ADVERTISING AND INNOVATION microsites, mobile initiatives, e-mail marketing, and • MOBILE (Compatibility, Advertising and Applications) other messaging. • E-MAIL MARKETING SOCIAL MEDIA - 20% Social Media Presence: Following, content, and influ- • FACEBOOK ence on major social media platforms, as well as buzz • TWITTER on blogs and other 2.0 forums. • YOUTUBE • USER-GENERATED CONTENT SEARCH ENGINE OPTIMIZATION (SEO) - 15% Visibility: On popular search engines. • TRAFFIC • KEYWORD VISIBILITY (Organic & Paid Search) • WEB AUTHORITY © L2 2010 METHODOLOGY 6
  • 7. RESULTS The Digital IQ Index ranks brands according to their digital competence, parsing each into one of five categories: 140+ GENIUS Digital competence is a competitive advantage for these brands. Their sites are search optimized, aesthetically engaging, functional, and interactive. They are experimenting and engage users on the edge of the network through compelling digital and mobile advertising and social media content. Automaker views the dealership site as integral to the brand Web experience. 110-140 GIFTED Sites are crawlable, brand enhancing, and strong commerce channels. Brands are typically present on all major social media channels and have a history of adept multichannel digital campaigns. 90-110 AVERAGE These brands have functional but predictable sites. Innovation efforts are uninspired and lack ambition. Boilerplate Web marketing. 70-90 CHALLENGED These brands poorly integrate the purchase and product experience. Engagement is limited to Web property, and digital campaigns are an afterthought. <70 FEEBLE Brands have largely ignored the digital phenomenon. Sites lack basic functionality and navigability, and brands disregard online advertising and social media. © L2 2010 RESULTS: the rankings 7
  • 8. AUTOMOBILE BRANDS RANKED BY DIGITAL IQ SCORE Overall Category Brand Price Point Category Overall IQ Class Description Rank Rank 1 Audi Luxury 1 157 Genius Digital Einstein maintains consistent brand messaging across every online channel 2 BMW Luxury 2 142 Genius Great social media, commerce-orientation, and microsite branding 3 Mercedes-Benz Luxury 3 140 Genius Mbrace mobile platform is among the most innovative 4 Volkswagen Premium Entry-Level 1 138 Gifted Unique dealer-centric site architecture and strong social media following 5 Ford Value 1 133 Gifted Best-in-class configurator interfaces seamlessly with dealer inventory; tremendous social media efforts 5 Scion Value 1 133 Gifted Poster-child Gen Y brand understands online innovation 7 Toyota Value 3 132 Gifted Site traffic and innovative social media help brand overcome poor site aesthetics 8 Ferrari Ultra-Luxury 1 128 Gifted Ultra-Luxury's champion; great interactive site content and community-building 8 Jeep Premium Entry-Level 2 128 Gifted Pulls ahead of Chrysler cohorts with spirited messaging and interactivity 8 Lexus Luxury 4 128 Gifted Top-notch customer service and exceptional online branding for hybrid launch 8 Mini Premium Entry-Level 2 128 Gifted Among the most playful on the Web; site delights 12 Nissan Value 4 127 Gifted Standard issue across the board, but delivers on commerce- orientation 13 Chevrolet Premium Entry-Level 4 124 Gifted Leads in SEO, great traffic and visibility, but where is the brand heritage? 14 Porsche Luxury 5 119 Gifted Passion for brand translates to greatest Facebook fan following 15 Cadillac Luxury 6 117 Gifted Generic GM configurator and off-site after-sales service hurt this luxury player 15 Honda Value 5 117 Gifted Social media maven: ‘Everyone Knows Someone Who Loves a Honda' campaign is inspired and fun 15 Volvo Premium 1 117 Gifted Twilight promotions have boosted social media efforts and online brand buzz 18 Mazda Value 6 109 Average Seamless incorporation of dealer sites; actually socializes on social media sites 18 Infiniti Premium 2 109 Average Brand seal of approval endorses dealers demonstrating top online service 20 Acura Premium 3 108 Average Functional and clean presentation but lacks innovation 20 Buick Premium 3 108 Average Best brand translation among GM divisions. Used Twitter feedback to reexamine SUV launch. 22 Chrysler Premium Entry-Level 5 101 Average Chrysler brands leverage standard, purchase-oriented site template 23 Dodge Premium Entry-Level 6 100 Average Comes in just behind sister brand Chrysler. Surprising? Probably not. 23 Kia Value 7 100 Average Momentum microsite and social media campaign generate significant traffic 25 Hyundai Value 8 94 Average Great traffic and SEO, but site lacks commerce orientation essential to value positioning 26 Jaguar Luxury 7 93 Average Site navigation is feeble, but points for strong social media and mobile advertising 27 Land Rover Luxury 8 92 Average Strong site, but anemic social media following 28 Subaru Premium Entry-Level 7 92 Average My Subaru owner testimonials provide authentic customer voice on site 29 GMC Value 9 91 Average Site is GM standard-issue, but brand lags behind siblings in social media presence 29 Saab Premium 5 91 Average Struggling brand also fails to translate on the Web; Change Perspectives microsite is a bright spot © L2 2010 RESULTS: the rankings 8
  • 9. Overall Category Brand Price Point Category Overall IQ Class Description Rank Rank Takes leaps with social networking site, but fails to deliver on 31 Smart Value 10 81 Challenged the easy stuff Another luxury brand damaged by parent: Web aesthetics don’t 32 Lincoln Premium 6 80 Challenged deliver on brand promise 33 Mitsubishi Value 11 76 Challenged Social media is a lifesaver for otherwise drowning Mitsubishi 34 Mercury Premium Entry-Level 8 75 Challenged Minimal social media presence damages this Ford brand's IQ 35 Bentley Ultra-Luxury 2 72 Challenged Stunning site, but invisible on the edge of the network 36 Hummer Premium 7 71 Challenged Add poor digital aptitude to the growing list of brand afflictions GM's dying brand suffers from limited Web resources and poor 37 Pontiac Value 12 71 Challenged branding Configurator may be the worst out there, requires 10 minutes to 38 Aston Martin Ultra-Luxury 3 66 Feeble install software plug-in User-generated content is highlight on site, but brand gets 39 Maserati Ultra-Luxury 4 65 Feeble dinged for poor traffic and SEO 40 Rolls-Royce Ultra-Luxury 5 63 Feeble Gorgeous site; not much else 42 Suzuki Value 13 55 Feeble Site disappoints; brand has largely ignored social media Auto's newest entrant gets good traffic, however Investor- 41 Tesla Luxury 9 55 Feeble oriented site is text heavy and lacks product focus Poorly organized, haphazard site hinders a brand built on design 43 Lotus Luxury 10 43 Feeble aesthetic Site is a navigational nightmare, takes four mouse clicks to see 44 Lamborghini Ultra-Luxury 6 31 Feeble a Lamborghini CATEGORY SAVANTS: DIGITAL IQ AWARDS BY PRICE POINT In addition to overall IQ rankings, some brands deserve recognition for leading digital efforts in their competitive category. Category Overall Price Point Category Brand Digital IQ Rank Rank Value Ford 133 1 5 Value Scion 133 1 5 Premium Entry-Level Volkswagen 138 1 4 Premium Entry-Level Jeep 128 2 8 Premium Entry-Level Mini 128 2 8 Luxury Audi 158 1 1 Luxury BMW 142 2 2 Ultra-Luxury Ferrari 128 1 8 © L2 2010 RESULTS: the rankings 9
  • 10. DISCOVERIES Digital IQ = Higher Sales RUSS WINER Data shows that Digital IQ has a .48 correlation Marketing Department Chairman to 2009 new-vehicle sales growth. Brands with NYU Stern high Digital IQs have better weathered difficult mar- “A preliminary analysis of the ket conditions. On average, brands ranked “Gifted” and above demonstrate a six percentage-point ad- relationship between Digital IQ vantage in new-vehicle sales growth versus brands and year-to-year change in sales across the ranked “Average” and below. Brands categorized 44 brands shows the significant and positive as “Challenged” or “Feeble” saw sales declines 12 impact of Digital IQ. A 10-point increase in percent greater than average. Digital IQ equates to a 3 percent increase in sales for the 44 brands.” DIGITAL IQ & 2009 NEW-VEHICLE SALES GROWTH 2009 NEW-VEHICLE SALES GROWTH DIGITAL IQ © L2 2010 DISCOVERIES 10
  • 11. Digital Tipping Point Mighty Microsites New-vehicle sales have declined 21 percent1; More than half of automakers use microsites to however, traffic to U.S. branded auto sites has supplement brand-level advertising campaigns, increased 46 percent. Although the core business augment new vehicle launches, or house online of automakers is declining, the importance of online promotions. Many of these microsites generate up efforts is increasing, suggesting a fundamental shift to 45 percent of upstream referral traffic directly from in the way consumers interact with brands. social media platforms, highlighting the important— and growing—role of these platforms. 1 MotorIntelligence: U.S. Light Vehicle Retail Sales, December 2009 SITE TRAFFIC GROWTH vs. 2009 NEW VEHICLE SALES by Auto Conglomerate 60% 50% 40% 30% 20% 10% 0% -10% -20% -30% -40% -50% -60% hi GM n nda ota d san AG sle r zda zuk i bis age BM W Ho Toy For Nis er ry Ma Su itsu olk sw iml Ch M V Da Annual Site Traffic Growth 2009 New-Vehicle Sales Growth Social Media Explosion German Giants Most brands are present on major social media The top four brands and all three “Geniuses” platforms. From October to November 2009, brand are headquartered in Germany. These brands— fans, followers, and subscribers on Facebook, Twitter, Audi, BMW, Mercedes-Benz, and Volkswagen— and YouTube grew 71, 69, and 17 percent, respec- understand the importance of multi-channel digital tively. Captive audience growth is astounding, but marketing and have made remarkable innovation auto brands largely underutilize social media. Only leaps online without compromising commerce-orien- 30 percent of the brands on Twitter retweet or con- tation or brand promise. verse with users, and many automakers restrict their Facebook wall to brand posts, outing their misunder- standing of social media’s underpinnings. © L2 2010 DISCOVERIES 11
  • 12. American Ingenuity (Lack of) tomer service tools, and, in some cases, shared social media across brands. Although standardized Of the 14 American brands evaluated, only two, sites score points for user-friendliness and com- Ford and Jeep, scored in the top 10. U.S. brands merce-orientation, digital homogeneity also results in were penalized for leveraging economies of scale to massive brand erosion. a fault. The Big Three—GM, Ford and Chrysler—all deploy a corporate site template, consolidated cus- SIMILARITY ACROSS GM PLATFORMS © L2 2010 DISCOVERIES 12
  • 13. FINDINGS Platform A brand’s site serves as the foundation of its digital pres- ence. Automaker sites must balance the demands of QUICK STATS: enhancing brand and motivating purchases. Automobile Configurators: Among brands there is considerable standardization • 93% of brand sites feature an automobile configurator. across user interface and navigation platforms. In par- Lamborghini, Tesla, and Rolls-Royce are the only brands without a build-your-own feature. ticular, American automakers General Motors and Ford utilize the same navigation template across each of their • Only 61% of configurators capture a customer’s prefer- ences and can forward them to a dealership or another brands’ sites. In some cases, economies of scale pay purchase channel. dividends, notably Ford’s configurator with its dynamic lo- cal inventory display, and GM’s e-chat customer service. Brand Consistency: But homogeneity across platforms can also be damag- • Approximately half of brands maintain a consistent look, ing, eliciting the question consumers have been asking feel and site architecture across dealership sites. for a while: “Is a Cadillac merely a blinged-up Chevy?” Comparison Shopping: • 59% of brand sites incorporate a feature to compare their models with those of key competitors (typically powered by Polk or Chrome). EXTERNAL CONTENT on Branded Auto Sites User-Generated & Externally Created Content: • Only 18% of sites incorporate user reviews or user- No External Content 36% generated content. • 46% of sites include external awards, accolades, and reviews from organizations including J.D. Power and External Awards, Accolades, & Reviews 46% Associates and Kelley Blue Book. • 36% of sites exclude externally-created content. User-Generated Content 18% Navigation: 0 10% 20% 30% 40% 50% • 36% of sites require at least one additional click from the landing page to reach the home page. © L2 2010 FINDINGS 13
  • 14. BUILDING BRAND vs. COORDINATING PURCHASE Where Select Brands Fall Purchase Power Balancing Demands COMMERCE ORIENTATION Falling Flat Beautiful Brochure-ware BRAND TRANSLATION © L2 2010 FINDINGS 14
  • 15. Off-Platform Messaging Automotive advertising spending was down 31 percent year-on-year in the first half of 2009, and almost every QUICK STATS: brand has fewer marketing dollars. Constricted budgets Mobile: have a dichotomous effect. Some automakers have scaled • 41% of auto brands have dedicated mobile sites. back new media spending to preserve their traditional • An additional 36% of brands have sites that load on a advertising presence. Other brands have turned to the Web mobile phone but do not offer enhanced mobile seeking cheaper earned media. functionality. A feature common to integrated digital campaigns is a • 23% of brand sites do not load on a mobile device. dedicated microsite. Microsite content ranges from the • 36% of auto brands have created a brand-sponsored brand-building, artistic videos on BMW’s “Expression of iPhone application. (Included in this count are the seven Joy” to the specialized configurator and commercial on the current and former GM brands that are included in the Kia Soul site. Although intent varies throughout microsites, “GM Mobile” iPhone app). patterns emerge. First, microsites that feature contests or • Many dealerships maintain independent iPhone apps, giveaways tend to attract the most traffic. Second, the top which are typically focused on inventory and promotions. upstream referral sites are often social media platforms. E-mail: In some cases, more than 40 percent of microsite traffic • 84% of brands offer e-mail list subscriptions on their site. came directly from Facebook, YouTube, or Twitter. • Of the brands with opt-in e-mail lists, only 40% encour- Other components of off-platform messaging are mobile age users to input demographic information when compatibility and messaging, digital advertising, and e-mail. signing up. RSS: MOBILE COMPATIBILITY • 25% of sites offer RSS feed subscriptions; feeds are of Branded Auto Sites typically plagued by small subscription bases. Microsites: Site Fails to Load 23% • 53% of brands use a microsite or minisite with a dedi- cated URL to highlight innovative content, new vehicle Site Loads on Smart Phone 32% launches, current marketing campaigns, and promotion activity. Dedicated Mobile Site 41% 0 10% 20% 30% 40% 50% UPSTREAM TRAFFIC: Selected Microsites Brand Microsite % of % of % of Referral Referral Referral #1 Traffic #2 Traffic #2 Traffic Cadillac CTVS Challenge google.com 26.31% jalopnik.com 21.14% facebook.com 10.51% Ford The Ford Story fordvehicles.com 19.13% facebook.com 17.58% ford.com 12.54% Kia Kia Soul Collective twitter.com 20.76% myspace.com 11.84% facebook.com 8.34% Scion Scion A/V scion.com 33.33% facebook.com 27.38% google.com 22.22% Volkswagen The Fun Theory youtube.com 25.08% facebook.com 19.72% google.com 15.47% © L2 2010 DISCOVERIES: key findings 15
  • 16. Social Media Fans, followers, and subscribers are flocking to brand-affiliated accounts on social media platforms. In addition, “unofficial” social media accounts and independent 2.0 sites continue to be popular forums for consumers to research, discuss, and voice concerns about auto brands. To effectively use this fast-growing medium, brands need to listen to users and experiment with ways to communicate effectively. Facebook: QUICK STATS: The world’s most popular social networking site has significant traction in the auto industry. Iconic luxury brands Ferrari and Porsche boast top fan counts, Facebook: and mainstream brands, including Volkswagen, Honda, Toyota, and Ford, • 73% of brands maintain at least one Facebook page. have generated significant followings by offering authentic, innovative content. • Branded auto Facebook pages Many brands have developed posted average monthly fan interactive applications, for example growth of 71% from October to VW’s popular “Meet the Volkswa- November 2009. gens” app, which analyzes a user’s profile and determines what model they resemble. However, as Facebook has become less application-friendly, automak- ers have found alternative ways to interact with fans. In early December 2009, Audi and Infiniti gave fans a sneak peek of new model launches with live video feeds. Audi also used the platform to solicit user input for the design of its new concept car. Value manufacturers, Ford and Honda use the forum as an additional branded platform to display vehicles and connect advocates. FACEBOOK FAN COUNT: Top 15 Brands 800,000 700,000 600,000 FACEBOOK FANS 500,000 400,000 300,000 200,000 100,000 0 i rar e W di gen nda p rt in enz ac uar ota ati d us Fer sch BM Au wa Ho Jee Ma sB dill Jag Toy ser For Lex Por lks ton ede Ca Ma Vo As rc Me © L2 2010 DISCOVERIES: key findings 16
  • 17. YouTube: YouTube has tremendous popularity in the auto industry and is a significant source of upstream and downstream traffic from brand sites. Brands use the platform to showcase celebrated TV ads, behind-the-scenes racing footage, design features, and user-generated videos. Brand-building viral videos such as Volkswagen’s “The Fun Theory” have received more than one million views. As with Facebook, successful brands, such as Ferrari, use YouTube as an additional branded platform and customize channels with brand look and feel, provide links to microsites, and interface with other social media channels. QUICK STATS: YouTube: • 70% of brands have a YouTube channel. • The average branded YouTube channel has 94 videos. YOUTUBE SUBSCRIPTION BASE: Top 15 Brands 14,000 12,000 SUBSCRIBERS 10,000 8,000 6,000 4,000 2,000 0 i i rar nda W e z For d vo sle r p Min c di ota dge u Fer Ho BM sch Ben Vol ry Jee dill a Au Toy Do bar Por des Ch Ca Su rce Me © L2 2010 DISCOVERIES: key findings 17
  • 18. Twitter: Although 68 percent of auto brands maintain a Twitter account, only 30 per- QUICK STATS: cent engage Twitter users in conversation. At a basic level, Twitter is both a customer service tool and a means to monitor and respond to user feedback. Twitter: Non-brand affiliate, Dan Vaden Automotive, has amassed thousands of fol- • 60% of brands have a Twitter lowers with more than 20 brand accounts, including VWWarranty and Buick- account, but only 30% of those Warranty, that retweet owner complaints and service issues. brands retweet and converse with users. • Branded tweeters average 15 tweets per week. • Branded auto Twitter accounts posted average monthly follower growth of 69% from October to November 2009. Twitter is also personality-driven. Celebrities are the rage and can quickly acquire hundreds of thou- sands of followers, but brands don’t need to employ Paris Hilton to amass a following. In general, Twitter handles that identify who’s tweeting—even a brand PR rep—get better traction than news feeds. Honda’s “Alicia_at_Honda” account, which features a communications supervisor tweeting about Honda news and online media, has gar- nered six times more than the follow- ers as the generic “Honda” account with PR feeds. Chrysler and GM also identify individuals who tweet on the brand’s behalf. © L2 2010 DISCOVERIES: key findings 18
  • 19. BEST IN TWEET: Automobile Brands With the Most Twitter Followers Tweet # of Avg. Tweets per Brand Twitter Account Observations Rank Followers Week News and conversation about the Ford brand, fed into 1 Ford Ford 18,910 52.3 myfordstory.com site Interactive tweeting featuring celebrity content (Ian Ziering, Chevy fuel 2 GM GMblogs 11,594 NA cell owner) and retweets from users and other GM twitterers All links to Toyota and no conversations to all Toyota-manufactured 3 Toyota Toyota 11,390 15 (Lexus, Scion, etc.) content Alicia Jones, communications supervisor at Honda, tweets about the 4 Honda Alicia_at_Honda 6,001 NA brand and digital media Tweets about Ford’s commitment to sustainability and fuel-efficient, 5 Ford FordDriveGreen 5,269 2.3 affordable vehicles 6 Ford FordFiesta 5,130 18.8 Feeds Fiesta agent tweets about missions 7 Scion scion 3,587 4.5 Links to Scion news/lifestyle posts Ed Garsten and Scott Anderson present official Chrysler Twitter page— 8 Chrysler Chrysler 3,327 17.8 news, links to brand social media, retweets, and conversation Conversational content from Christopher Barger, director of GM Global 9 GM cbarger 2,971 54.3 Social Media BEST IN TWEET: Top Non-Affiliated Twitter Accounts # of Twitter Account Observations Followers NewJerseyNissan 16,848 Tweets about inventory, offers and promotions Richmond, Virginia, Ford dealership tweets news, offers, events, sponsorships, richmondford 9,005 and information on dealership social media activity BMWSauberF1Team 8,770 Official team tweets; also significant following (4,134) for BMWNewz My_Ferrari 5,822 A man in Salt Lake City tweets to solicit donations to help him buy a Ferrari LosAngelesHonda 5,408 Los Angeles Honda dealership tweets about Honda news and links ToyotaFanClub 2,602 Links to Toyota content vovloofthetriad 2,257 North Carolina Volvo dealer tweets links to brand news and features landyzone 2,183 Land Rover news, links, conversation from independent blog landyzone.co.uk barnabemazda 2,120 Quebec Mazda dealership tweets inventory HyundaiAtlanta 2,077 Conyers, Georgia, dealership tweets about Hyundai news 89c4 2,047 Tweets from writer of Kansas City-based 89c4 blog by a driver of an ‘89 Porsche Bentley_cars 1,874 Specializing in Bentley car hire Dan Vaden Automotive scours Web for VW-related links reposts with warranty, recalls, VWWarranty 1,854 and news jeepWorld 1,698 E-commerce merchant of Jeep accessories; tweets Jeep news lexusnews 1,623 News links, and press on Lexus from independent blog lexusenthusiast.com © L2 2010 DISCOVERIES: key findings 19
  • 20. Search Engine Optimization FINDINGS Auto search campaigns must balance the competing QUICK STATS: demands of directing search traffic to the brand and dealership sites. Well-performing automakers develop Traffic: strategies that send consumers to the appropriate site • Although 2009 new-vehicle U.S. sales are down 21%, according to their stage in the purchase cycle. traffic to auto brand sites has increased 46% year-on-year. Search-optimized sites focus on broad search terms to Paid Search: capture generic brand and model searches common • Approximately 65% of auto brands are using Google early in the purchase cycle. Brands must also coordinate paid search to direct traffic to their sites, and 56% of SEO efforts with dealership sites for more specific long- use Bing. tail searches as consumers move down path toward Inbound Links: purchase and search with finer criteria. Strong online • Branded auto sites boast an average of approximately inventory management systems on dealership sites are 1,700 inbound links. essential to support long-tail search traffic. Page Rank: As a result of tremendous growth on Facebook, YouTube, • Google page rank of U.S. auto sites averages 6.4. and Twitter, SEO strategies are becoming increasingly Upstream Referrals: important in directing search traffic. These sites were • Facebook, YouTube, and other social networking sites among the top five referral sites for 73 percent of brands. are among the top five upstream referral sites for 73% of automobile brands. COMPARATIVE U.S. TRAFFIC: Top 15 Brands ota t an nda d dge Kia n ai zda us u ura di Toy role Nis s Ho For Do age und Ma Lex bar Ac BM W Au hev sw Hy Su C Volk © L2 2010 DISCOVERIES: key findings 20
  • 21. TEAM SCOTT GALLOWAY academics. Maureen has a BA in human biology from Author, Digital IQ Index and Stanford University and an MBA from NYU Stern. Founder, L2 (LuxuryLab) Scott is the founder of L2, a think tank for prestige KATHRYN DURYEA brands, and Clinical Associate Professor at the NYU Lead Researcher Stern School of Business, where he teaches brand Kathryn’s work experience spans the government, think strategy and luxury marketing. Scott is also the founder tank, and e-commerce sectors. She began her career in of Firebrand Partners, an operational activist firm that Washington, D.C., first in then Vice President Cheney’s has invested more than $1 billion in U.S. consumer and office in the White House and in Lynne Cheney’s office media companies. In 1997, he founded Red Envelope, at the American Enterprise Institute, where she man- an Internet-based branded consumer gift retailer (2007, aged publishing, communications, and philanthropic $100mm revs.). In 1992, Scott founded Prophet, a projects. She gained experience in e-commerce and on- brand strategy consultancy with more than 100 profes- line marketing at Bare Escentuals, Inc. Kathryn received sionals in the United States, Europe and Asia. Scott a BS in foreign service from Georgetown University and was elected to the World Economic Forum’s “Global an MBA from Stanford University. Leaders of Tomorrow,” which recognizes 100 individuals under the age of 40 “whose accomplishments have had an impact on a global level.” CHRISTINE PATTON Creative Director Scott serves on the boards of directors of Eddie Bauer Christine is a brand and marketing consultant with more (Nasdaq: EBHI), The New York Times Company (NYSE: than 15 years of experience creating brand identities NYT), eco-America, and Berkeley’s Haas School of and marketing communications for aspirational and Business. He received a BA from UCLA and an MBA luxury brands. She began her career at Cosí, where from UC Berkeley. she developed the brand and oversaw its evolution from concept through growth to 100 restaurants. Since MAUREEN MULLEN then her work has included creative direction for a wide Lead Researcher array of clients, including the launch of Kidville and Maureen began her career at Triage Consulting Group CosmoGIRL! magazine. Most recently, she led Creative in San Francisco. At Triage, she led several managed- Services at ELLE during the most successful years of care payment review and payment benchmarking the magazine’s history, developing innovative integrated projects for hospitals, including UCLA Medical Center, marketing programs for advertisers. Christine received UCSF, and HCA. She has gone on to lead research and a BA in economics and journalism from the University of consulting efforts around digital media, private bank- Connecticut and an MBA from NYU Stern. ing M&A, insurance industry risk management, and renewable energy economics for professional firms and © L2 2010 TEAM 21
  • 22. TIMOTHY BRUNS ment, and a research monograph, Pricing, and has Expert, Brand Translation authored more than 60 papers on a variety of topics including consumer choice, marketing research meth- Tim is the Executive Director of Creative at Cheil North odology, marketing planning, advertising, and pricing. America. He began his career at Campbell, Mithun, Russ has served two terms as the editor of the Journal Esty and then went to Lot21 (Carat) overseeing digital of Marketing Research, he is the past co-editor of Jour- accounts, including eBay, Intraware, Seagate, Adobe, nal of Interactive Marketing, and is currently an Associ- Pets.com, Palm, Unicast, and Hotwire.com. Since then ate Editor of the International Journal of Research in he has led the creative work at Atmosphere BBDO, Marketing. He is the co-editor of the Review of Market- TBWA ChiatDay, Avenue A/Razorfish, and most ing Science, Journal of Marketing, the Journal of Market- recently Draftfcb. His work spans a diverse group of ing Research, and Marketing Science. clients, including Hampton Inn, HP Motorola, MetLife, , Jamaica Tourism, Sprint/Nextel, Absolut, Nivea, AOL for Broadband, Citibank, MSN, and numerous pharmaceu- ticals brands. Tim has produced award-winning cam- paigns in television, print, and online, in both B2C and B2B marketing. CINDY GALLOP Expert, Brand Translation Cindy Gallop is founder and CEO of IfWeRantheWorld, a crowd-sourced Web platform designed to turn good intentions into action, which will launch in January 2010. She also founded MakeLoveNotPorn at TED 2009 and consults with clients who want to change the game in their particular sector through radical reinvention and ground- breaking, innovative, forward-thinking approaches. From 1989 to 2005, Cindy ran such global accounts as Coca-Cola, Polaroid, and Ray-Ban for creative network Bartle Bogle Hegarty. She helped launch and run BBH Asia Pacific and moved to New York in 1998 to found BBH US, which began as Cindy in a room with a phone. Four years later BBH was named Adweek’s Eastern Agency of the Year. In 2003, Advertising Women of New York voted Cindy Advertising Woman of the Year. She is a frequent speaker at conferences such as TED, ad:tech, and The Next Big Idea and writes for online publications and magazines. RUSSELL WINER Academic Expert, Digital IQ Correlations Russ is the William H. Joyce Professor of Marketing and chairman of the Marketing Department at NYU Stern. He has written three books, Marketing Management, Analysis for Marketing Planning, and Product Manage- © L2 2010 TEAM 22
  • 23. VALUE Price Point Overall Off-Platform Social Brand Parent Digital IQ IQ Group Platform SEO Rank Rank Messaging Media Ford Ford 1 5 133 Gifted 2 5 5 5 Scion Toyota 1 5 133 Gifted 5 5 3 2 Toyota Toyota 3 7 132 Gifted 3 5 5 5 Nissan Nissan 4 12 127 Gifted 3 4 5 5 Honda Honda 5 15 117 Gifted 2 4 5 5 Mazda Mazda 6 18 109 Average 4 4 3 4 Kia Kia 7 23 100 Average 1 5 3 4 Hyundai Hyundai 8 25 94 Average 2 3 3 4 GMC GM 9 29 91 Average 2 2 2 4 Smart Daimler AG 10 31 81 Challenged 2 3 2 1 Mitsubishi Mitsubishi 11 33 76 Challenged 1 1 3 2 Pontiac GM 12 37 71 Challenged 1 2 2 3 Suzuki Suzuki 13 42 55 Feeble 1 2 2 2 Category Average 2.2 3.5 3.3 3.5 Massive site traffic and innovative social media campaigns elevate brands in the value category. Unfortunately, many sites fail to meet the needs of price-sensitive customers with an effective online purchase funnel. Accolades to Ford and Nissan for best-in-class configurators that interface dynamically with local dealer inventory. With the exception of niche luminary Scion, brands in this category struggled with site brand translation. Off-site, almost all earn at least average marks in digital advertising, social media, and search engine optimization, with sev- eral brands strong in all three. Ford and Honda are trailblazers in social media with exceptional efforts on Facebook, YouTube, and Twitter. Ford and Toyota vie for the top-trafficked sites, and Hyundai demonstrated a keen understanding of a multichannel digital campaign around the Kia Soul. © L2 2010 VALUE BRANDS 23
  • 24. ford Owner: Ford Motor Company Rank: 5 Digital IQ: 133 Classification: Gifted The only Detroit automaker to refuse bailout funds, Ford is also DIGITAL DASHBOARD: Overall Online Performance the Motor City’s digital beacon. The Ford Story microsite serves as social media mission control, inte- grating messaging from the brand’s nine Twitter accounts, three YouTube Platform Off-Platform Social Media SEO Messaging channels, and seven Facebook pages. Comprehensive media campaigns, such as “Ford Warriors in Pink,” intended to raise breast cancer awareness, have users traveling from Twitter to Facebook to inventive microsites and back again. While the brand loses points for site aesthetics, Ford understands the bottom line: its sites are designed to sell cars and make it easy for users to buy them. >> FORD IS THE ONLY NON-GERMAN AUTOMAKER RANKED IN THE TOP FIVE. << © L2 2010 VALUE BRANDS: ford 24
  • 25. FLASH OF GENIUS FORD FIESTA MOVEMENT Ford launched an innovative and wildly successful grassroots social media campaign around the Ford Fiesta. The company screened thousands of can- didates and selected 100 young enthusiasts who each received a free Fiesta, insurance, and gas for six months in exchange for recording their adventures on sites including YouTube, Flickr and Twitter. Their efforts attracted more than four million YouTube views, 500,000 Flickr views, three million Twitter impressions, and 50,000 interested customers, most of whom were not Ford owners. >> ACROSS ITS THREE YOUTUBE CHANNELS, FORD POSTED A 50% INCREASE IN SUBSCRIBER GROWTH FROM OCTOBER TO NOVEMBER 2009. << © L2 2010 VALUE BRANDS: ford 25
  • 26. SEO ANALYTICS 1 2 3 4 5 Organic Keywords ford ford motor company ford fusion ford escape ford edge Upstream Sites ford.com google.com yahoo.com pointroll.com facebook.com Downstream Sites google.com yahoo.com facebook.com doubleclick.com ford.com shopwarriorsin- onlinevehicle Audience Also Visits pink.com ford.com ford-now.com financing.com thefordstory.com SOCIAL MEDIA SPOTLIGHT ON MOBILE Mobile Score: 4 # of Fans/ Name Ford integrates mobile into the Followers/ Observations (Top Followers) marketing mix using barcode-ad Subscribers targeting and hyper-local mobile Centralized Ford page links to other so- cial media including Web casts, Twitter, SMS campaigns. The “Ford Flex Facebook Ford 52,376 and Flickr. Other pages focus on specific models and brand campaigns. Photo Lab” iPhone app allows users to manipulate photos taken General news and conversation about the brand. Ford maintains eight other on their phone and has tallied Twitter Ford 18,910 Twitter handles including FordDrive Green, which has over 5,000 followers. significant downloads. Brand channel is supplemented by YouTube Ford Motor Company 1,181 “The Ford Story” channel and the “Ford Mustang” channel. FEATURED EXPERT: TIMOTHY BRUNS Executive Director of Creative | Cheil North America Aesthetics: 0 Messaging: 1 “This site looks cheap like its cars. Design is clunky. Content is very basic. Structure is archaic. There is absolutely zero brand story. If I were to describe an analogy for this experience it would be, “sticker shock.” Not because of the price, but because of the design. I hon- estly could not navigate through it because I felt I could download a spec sheet and price sheet or go into a dealer and get a better experience.” FEATURED EXPERT: CINDY GALLOP Founder & CEO | IfWeRanTheWorld.com Aesthetics: 0 Messaging: 1 For more about your brand’s “Archaic. And depressing.” Digital IQ, CONTACT US. © L2 2010 VALUE BRANDS: ford 26
  • 27. scion Owner: Toyota Motor Corporation Rank: 5 Digital IQ: 133 Classification: Gifted Toyota’s Scion is a case study in Gen Y, counterculture market- DIGITAL DASHBOARD: Overall Online Performance ing and it is no surprise that the brand understands digital. Its site is distinctive and bears little resem- blance to parent, Toyota’s. Platform Off-Platform Social Media SEO Recent efforts are on-message and Messaging brand-enhancing and include the xPressionism microsite, where users design custom cars that venture far beyond factory specs, and the Scion A/V microsite. As a niche brand, Scion takes IQ-point hits for poor site traffic and its weak social media following. SPOTLIGHT ON MOBILE Mobile Score: 4 Mobile is another note in Scion’s digital repertoire. From hyper- local SMS campaigns at regional events to an easy-to-use mobile site with a prominent call to action, the brand understands the medium. >> IN CONJUNCTION WITH THE AUGUST 2009 XD FIVE-DOOR LAUNCH, SCION COMMISSIONED ATTIK AND ARTIST DAVE CORREIA TO ILLUSTRATE A QUIRKY WEB GAME CALLED LITTLE DEVIANTS. << © L2 2010 VALUE BRANDS: scion 27
  • 28. FLASH OF GENIUS SCION A/V Scion leverages the brand’s record label, Scion A/V, all over the Web. The Scion A/V microsite features art, film, lifestyle, and music content and is one of the top-five downstream referral sites for scion.com. Site content is leveraged on the “ScionRadio17” YouTube channel and a Tumblr blog. The Scion A/V Facebook page has nearly 5,000 fans— almost as many as the brand’s page. Subtle branding, authenticity, and significant user-generated content make this site a hit. >> SCION.COM HAS LIVE ONLINE CHAT CAPABILITY AVAILABLE FIVE DAYS A WEEK FROM 5 AM TO 6 PM. << © L2 2010 VALUE BRANDS: scion 28
  • 29. SEO ANALYTICS 1 2 3 4 5 Organic Keywords scion scion tc scion xb toyota scion scion cars Upstream Sites google.com yahoo.com toyota.com youtube.com facebook.com Downstream Sites google.com yahoo.com facebook.com toyota.com scionav.com rankingsand Audience Also Visits kia.com toyota.com reviews.com motortrend.com honda.com SOCIAL MEDIA FEATURED EXPERT: CINDY # of Fans/ Name Followers/ Observations GALLOP (Top Followers) Founder & CEO Subscribers IfWeRanTheWorld Unsure if page is official (verbiage reads .com Facebook Scion 6,689 strangely) but appears to be updating Aesthetics: 4 content almost daily. Messaging: 4 Links to Scion news and lifestyle content. Brand also maintains “Here’s a car brand actively try- Twitter scion 3,587 xPressionism Twitter account that leverages microsite content. ing to stand out from the crowd by Content from Scion A/V record label; virtue of a youthful, characterful includes 17 channels of radio from DJs, YouTube ScionRadio17 247 videos from the 2008 Scion Hypeman positioning. I liked the presenta- contests, and information about upcoming releases and events. tion of the “shock-and-aw-yeah” Electric Wasabi XD. FEATURED EXPERT: Lots of engaging content. Site is TIMOTHY BRUNS quirky, fun, and radiates attitude. Executive Director of Creative | Cheil North America Good use of audio, even if some of Aesthetics: 5 Messaging: 4 the sound effects became a little “Finally, a car site that breaks the conventions of Web irritating quite quickly. design somewhat to offer an interesting interface while still being Nothing too revolutionary about intuitive. Congrats, Scion! how the site works, but good When I viewed their external advertising and communications I thought marks for genuine differentia- to myself, ‘Why does a car that is reasonably priced have to look so tion and a sense of shock, horror, cheap?’ But when I arrived at the site, I was pleasantly surprised. modernity.” The various elements of interactivity, combined with sound effects and animation, kept me engaged and compelled to stay. I also really loved the fact that the first step of navigation asked me if I was an owner or browser. Both avenues were compelling, especially the owner section which connected me to other enthusiasts and events and content related to Scion and the audience. Nice job! Toyota did a great job of creating a For more about your brand’s unique identity for Scion.” Digital IQ, CONTACT US. © L2 2010 VALUE BRANDS: scion 29
  • 30. toyota Owner: Toyota Motor Corporation Rank: 7 Digital IQ: 132 Classification: Gifted Battling Ford for the most- trafficked site, Toyota’s strong DIGITAL DASHBOARD: Overall Online Performance SEO and digital advertising give the brand an IQ boost. Integrated multichannel campaigns, includ- ing “Great Time to Sign” and recent Prius efforts, demonstrate under- Platform Off-Platform Social Media SEO Messaging standing of how to use multiple online channels effectively. Although aimed at sales conver- sion, the site’s purchase channel is weaker than those of rivals Ford and Chrysler and lacks an inventory- driven dealer handoff. The brand benefits from fun, interactive so- cial media efforts, and its recently launched Yaris minisite offers users a virtual test-drive on some of America’s best-known streets. SPOTLIGHT ON MOBILE Mobile Score: 4 Toyota has a strong mobile- enabled site and innovative mobile ad campaigns. In October 2009 the brand took over a Times Square billboard and filled it with real-time illus- trations drawn by users on the Prius iPhone app. >> TOYOTA RECENTLY HANDED OVER THE TITLE OF WORLD’S BIGGEST AUTOMAKER TO VOLKSWAGEN. THE BRAND ALSO HAS APPROXIMATELY 1/6 THE NUMBER OF FACEBOOK FANS AS THE GERMAN GIANT. << © L2 2010 VALUE BRANDS: toyota 30
  • 31. FLASH OF GENIUS “GREAT TIME TO SIGN” CAMPAIGN The “Great Time To Sign” campaign targeted New York Giants football fans with a mobile text message from quarterback Eli Manning and drove them to the greattimetosign.com site, which featured video com- mercial content (also posted on YouTube), links to local deals, a paper football game, and the opportunity for users to submit a “victory dance” video. Toyota integrated its Web efforts with traditional TV placements. SEO ANALYTICS 1 2 3 4 5 Organic Keywords toyota toyota.com cash for clunkers toyota prius toyota yaris Upstream Sites google.com yahoo.com facebook.com honda.com msn.com Downstream Sites google.com yahoo.com tmsbuyatoyota.com facebook.com honda.com toyotaowners Audience Also Visits toyozone.com shopatgst.com toyotacertified.com online.com N/A >> TOYOTA LEADS ALL BRANDS IN RSS FEEDS PER DAY (1.8), BUT, LIKE MOST AUTOMAKERS, LACKS A LARGE SUBSCRIPTION BASE. << © L2 2010 VALUE BRANDS: toyota 31
  • 32. SOCIAL MEDIA # of Fans/ Name Followers/ Observations (Top Followers) Subscribers Highlight is reviews page where users discuss cars and experiences; Prius page boasts more than 45,000 fans and Facebook Toyota 55,439 innovative content including "Random Acts of Prius," an interactive game. Twitter Toyota 11,390 Brand tweets links to news and press releases. Channel includes entertaining user-generated video of dogs YouTube ToyotaUSA 1,183 reacting to a squeaky noise in a Toyota commercial. FEATURED EXPERT: FEATURED EXPERT: TIMOTHY BRUNS CINDY GALLOP Executive Director of Creative Founder & CEO Cheil North America IfWeRanTheWorld.com Aesthetics: 0 Aesthetics: 2 Messaging: 2 Messaging: 2 “Toyota has built its brand on being a dependable, “Toyota puts the third generation Prius right up trustworthy, and ‘everyday’ car—an approach that front—a good move—but then fails to present and has been very successful. The brand has continued to leverage it in any creative manner, because once move forward, carving a niche in the marketplace again this is a site adhering firmly to the template. with its consistent brand promise and message of The missed opportunity here lies in the concept dependability. vehicles, especially the PM (personal mobility vehicle), Recently the brand has grown due to innovation and which has the opportunity to engage and present marketing dollars for the Prius and the environmen- a car brand with some interesting ideas about tally conscious philosophy of harmony between man, the future.” nature, and machine. And the marketing is brilliant and very memorable. Toyota offers somewhat of a microsite experience with the Prius on the Toyota.com site; in fact, it’s the main communication and takes up the largest piece of real estate on the page. However, once I clicked on it, I expected to see all of the people dressed as nature elements as in the TV commer- cials. Or, at the very least, some element of the brand embodied as uniquely and compellingly as it is in the advertising. But instead, it was very shallow and non- experiential. The main site looked dated, even down to very archaic icons in the main navigational system, which in my mind was not ‘moving forward.’” For more about your brand’s Digital IQ, CONTACT US. © L2 2010 VALUE BRANDS: toyota 32
  • 33. nissan Owner: Nissan Motor Company Rank: 12 Digital IQ: 127 Classification: Gifted With its site ranked among the five most trafficked in the U.S., DIGITAL DASHBOARD: Overall Online Performance Nissan gets an IQ bump for strong SEO and a broad reach on social media. Although the site isn’t winning any beauty contests, it does a good job of organizing content, a Platform Off-Platform Social Media SEO Messaging challenge when showcasing a wide array of models. Unlike brands that encourage the user to transition from parent to dealer site and view the move as a conversion, Nissan aims to keep users navigating within its parent site after configuring a vehicle, requesting a quote, and searching local inventory SPOTLIGHT ON MOBILE Mobile Score: 4 Mobile is frequently a component of promotional campaigns, and Nissan tapped into mobile mar- keting for the launch of the Cube in 2009 with an iPhone app. Nissan has a dedicated mobile site that is product-focused and easy to navigate. >> NEWJERSEYNISSAN, A NEW YORK AREA DEALERSHIP HANDLE, TOPS ALL BRANDS IN DEALERSHIP FOLLOWERS WITH NEARLY 17,000. << © L2 2010 VALUE BRANDS: nissan 33
  • 34. FLASH OF GENIUS SOCIAL MEDIA & INTERNAL COMMUNICATIONS Nissan is using social media for more than just marketing. The brand’s internal communication team main- tains a YouTube channel, NCOM- VIDEO, which features videos on new Nissan and Infiniti products as well as footage from brand events aimed at providing corporate outreach and employee education. The Nissan_Dealers Twitter handle provides links to brand content for a community of dealers and has gar- nered more than 5,000 followers. >> APPROXIMATELY HALF OF THE VISITS TO THE NISSAN SITE ARE FROM “REGULAR” VISITORS. << © L2 2010 VALUE BRANDS: nissan 34
  • 35. SEO ANALYTICS 1 2 3 4 5 Organic Keywords nissan nissan cars nissan versa nissan altima nissan cube Upstream Sites google.com yahoo.com msn.com doubleclick.com nissan.com Downstream Sites google.com yahoo.com facebook.com msn.com honda.com Audience Also Visits nissan.com nissanfinance.com courtesyparts.com mitsucars.com suzukiauto.com SOCIAL MEDIA FEATURED EXPERT: CINDY # of Fans/ Name Followers/ Observations GALLOP (Top Followers) Founder & CEO Subscribers IfWeRanTheWorld Page is product-focused and loads .com with links to all models; also advertises Facebook Nissan 18,182 the Nissan Leaf university scholarship Aesthetics: 1 contest Messaging: 1 Conversations and links to other social “Standard issue. Missed oppor- media content from Nissan's official Twitter NissanNews 533 page; Nissan_Dealer account has tunity is the Nissan Leaf and the substantial following and is linked to Nissan site. Zero Emission tour—and 24 im- Uploads include commercials, manufac- ages of the same car is too many. YouTube NissanCommercials 385 turing videos, PR content, and product Why post them all? I got excited highlights. about the Live Chat capability, but when I clicked on it, I got a form FEATURED EXPERT: saying, ‘Sorry, our support team is TIMOTHY BRUNS Executive Director of Creative | Cheil North America not available, but you can send us Aesthetics: 2 an e-mail.’ Messaging: 1 Another site at odds with the “I have always thought the ‘Shift’ brand idea for brand’s tagline, ‘Shift_the way Nissan is brilliant. And I wish that the same creativity and concept could you move.” Because that should be, have been taken into consideration when designing this experience. Yes, ‘Shift the way you interact/ there was a graphic element from the campaign and the ‘shift’ identity is engage with/experience a site.’” used as a navigational device and there was an extended message, ‘Shift the way you move,’ but so what? I would have loved if they had shifted my thinking, my moving, and my way of interacting with the brand. Overall, it was designed in a clean manner, but nothing at all experiential about it. If I were Nissan, I would shift into reverse and try again.” For more about your brand’s Digital IQ, CONTACT US. © L2 2010 VALUE BRANDS: nissan 35
  • 36. honda Owner: Honda Motor Co., Ltd Rank: 15 Digital IQ: 117 Classification: Gifted Honda focuses on building an online community. The “Everybody DIGITAL DASHBOARD: Overall Online Performance Knows Somebody Who Loves A Honda” social media experiment on Facebook showcases the Honda ownership experience through a se- ries of testimonials and “love chains” Platform Off-Platform Social Media SEO Messaging between owners. On Twitter a PR representative, Alicia, tweets to more than 6,000 followers about the brand. The “Power of Dreams” documentary video campaign is exhibited on a microsite and Honda’s YouTube channel. Unfortunately, a lackluster site with awkward navigability tempers the strength of Honda’s digital footprint. Vehicle display is poor, and media content requires site visitors to install a software plug-in—disappointing for a brand with this broad a reach. >> HONDA IS THE ONLY AUTOMOBILE BRAND TO USE A SUBDOMAIN URL ARCHITECTURE (I.E., AUTOMOBILES.HONDA.COM) FOR ITS U.S. HOMEPAGE. << © L2 2010 VALUE BRANDS: honda 36
  • 37. FLASH OF GENIUS ALICIA_AT_HONDA TWITTER ACCOUNT Honda enthusiasts are privy to a unique voice inside the company’s HQ: Alicia Jones. The corporate communica- tions supervisor playfully converses with followers and pro- vides links to great brand media and promotional content. Alicia has amassed nearly six times the following of Honda’s brand handle, suggesting the power of personality and authenticity on Twitter. SEO ANALYTICS 1 2 3 4 5 Upstream Sites google.com yahoo.com acura.com facebook.com toyota.com components.view- Downstream Sites shophonda.com hondacertifiedsearch.com point.com spreenhonda.com toyota.com Audience Also Visits nissan.com nissanfinance.com courtesyparts.com mitsucars.com suzukiauto.com >> HONDA TOPS ALL BRANDS IN MONTH-ON-MONTH FACEBOOK FAN GROWTH. THE BRAND ADDED MORE THAN 200,000 FANS FROM OCTOBER TO NOVEMBER 2009. << © L2 2010 VALUE BRANDS: honda 37
  • 38. SOCIAL MEDIA SPOTLIGHT ON MOBILE Mobile Score: 3 # of Fans/ Name Followers/ Observations Honda incorporates mobile into (Top Followers) Subscribers its media mix for vehicle launches, ”Everyone Knows Somebody Who Loves particularly in emerging markets. Facebook Honda 269,099 a Honda” Facebook campaign is all about community building. The brand boasted 27 percent click-through rate (CTR) on its Alicia tweets news and digital media 2009 Honda Insight mobile Twitter alicia_at_honda 6,001 content. Additional Twitter handle, Honda, has over 1,000 followers. campaign. “Power of Dreams” documentary YouTube The Honda Channel 5,141 campaign is featured. FEATURED EXPERT: TIMOTHY BRUNS Executive Director of Creative | Cheil North America Aesthetics: 1 Messaging: 3 “I appreciate how Honda tries to bring its marketing to the site in an experiential way. Are they speaking to themselves some- what? Yes—I don’t think people are compelled to click and hear the stories of people who own and love their Hondas. It reminds me of the Saturn campaign back in the ’90s where an entire community was built around people who loved their Saturns. At the be- FEATURED ginning of the ‘community’ aspect of the Web, this was revolutionary for a EXPERT: car company and Saturn leveraged it in a grassroots way that exploded. CINDY But again, that was the ’90s. GALLOP Founder & CEO IfWeRanTheWorld The challenge with any brand is to find ways to use the online space to .com connect and have a dialog with consumers and loyalists. Site tools were Aesthetics: 0 provided to build a Honda and shop by price but were employed in a very Messaging: 1 conventional way. The site is more like an interactive brochure with check “Very disappointing. I actually boxes than a compelling experience that showcases the brand values.” had higher expectations of Honda. This was just a mess— and boring. ‘The Power of Dreams’ could not have been less applicable.” For more about your brand’s Digital IQ, CONTACT US. © L2 2010 VALUE BRANDS: honda 38
  • 39. mazda Owner: Mazda Motor Corporation Rank: 18 Digital IQ: 109 Classification: Average A functional—albeit standard— site, substantial online advertis- DIGITAL DASHBOARD: Overall Online Performance ing, and strong U.S. traffic place Mazda atop the average ranks. The brand has embraced some Web innovation, including a Linked-In Platform Off-Platform Social Media SEO poll and The Drive microsite, which Messaging allows users to enjoy a simulated Mazda driving experience on some of America’s well-known roads. However, the Japanese manufacturer’s social media messaging is poorly maintained and uninspired, with correspondingly small followings. >> MAZDAS247, A YOUTUBE CHANNEL EXTENSION OF THE NON-BRAND-AFFILIATED MAZDAS247.COM 2.0 SITE, COMES UP FIRST IN SEARCHES AND HAS MORE VIEWS THAN THE MAZDA-BRANDED YOUTUBE CHANNEL. << © L2 2010 VALUE BRANDS: mazda 39
  • 40. FLASH OF GENIUS MAZDA DEALERS ONLINE Mazda is the only brand to incorporate dealer sites under the branded site’s URL. From the embedded sites, users can request a quote, search vehicle inventory, and access sales, service hours, and special dealer promotions. The Mazda Dealers Online program recognizes dealers with superior online service. SEO ANALYTICS 1 2 3 4 5 Organic Keywords mazda mazda 3 mazda usa mazda 6 mazda 5 Upstream Sites google.com mazda.com yahoo.com facebook.com cars.com Downstream Sites google.com yahoo.com mazda.com edmunds.com facebook.com mazdasweepstakes whatsmysandwich. Audience Also Visits mazda.com headquarters.com forddriveontour.com com threeolives.com >> MAZDA AGGRESSIVELY PURCHASES KEYWORDS TO DIRECT TRAFFIC TO ITS SITE AND COMES UP FIRST IN PAID SEARCH FOR COMPETITOR SEARCHES. << © L2 2010 VALUE BRANDS: mazda 40
  • 41. SPOTLIGHT ON MOBILE SOCIAL MEDIA Mobile Score: 3.5 # of Fans/ Name Online since 2007, Mazda’s mo- Followers/ Observations (Top Followers) Subscribers bile site is clear and easy to navigate. It is hard to tell if this is official; content Facebook Mazda 1,112 is limited to photo posts from the host. The launch of Mazda 2 Conversations and links, but last tweet Twitter NewsFromMazda 858 dates back to mid-October 2009. included a targeted Features commercials and racing foot- mobile video YouTube Mazda_USA 58 age; returned very low in YouTube search for “Mazda.” campaign. FEATURED EXPERT: FEATURED EXPERT: CINDY GALLOP Founder & CEO | IfWeRanTheWorld.com TIMOTHY Aesthetics: 0 BRUNS Executive Director Messaging: 1 of Creative “This site is absolutely atrocious. It is such a cheap- Cheil North America looking mess that I headed in desperation for the tab marked Aesthetics: 2 ‘Zoom-Zoom’, hoping for something better. This is where I discovered the Messaging: 1 ‘Brand essence video,’ which looked remarkably like they used the rip-o- matic the agency originally presented. This is also where, buried halfway “Overall the site is poorly designed down a column of type, is what is apparently Mazda’s vision and mission and lacks differentiation, brand statement: story, or experiential components. All children instinctively know it. The filter tool was the start of A few adults still remember it. something better. This tool allowed One unique car company refuses to outgrow it. me to slide a series of scales based In grown-up language, it means the exhilaration on price, seating capacity, fuel And liberation that come from experiencing sheer motion. economy, and horsepower and But as usual, children put it much better. then the selected choices would And simply call it Zoom-Zoom. populate the models that fit my We practice it every day. criteria. It wasn’t the prettiest tool, It’s why we build the kind of cars we do. but it was quite useful. Mazda. Always the soul of a sports car.® Overall, from a brand that consid- ers itself to be youthful, passionate, Now, if that’s the passion that drives you, it’s why you build the kind of self-confident, stylish, insightful, cars you do, and it’s your soul, why is it buried deep in your site halfway and spirited, the site and experi- down a dense column of type? ‘The Drive’ was a good feature and much ence missed the mark.” more ‘Zoom-Zoom’ like, but you had to find your way to it. Why not start there?” For more about your brand’s Digital IQ, CONTACT US. © L2 2010 VALUE BRANDS: mazda 41
  • 42. kia Owner: Kia Motor Company Rank: 23 Digital IQ: 100 Classification: Average Great microsites and early-stage social media efforts demonstrate DIGITAL DASHBOARD: Overall Online Performance that this value brand is interested but not yet committed to the digital medium. Last fall’s multichannel Kia Soul cam- Platform Off-Platform Social Media SEO paign, featuring a playful, energetic Messaging microsite, coordinated YouTube ef- forts, an iPhone app, and gaming ads, reveals the brand’s digital potential. But Kia loses IQ points for its site, which lacks the interac- tive content showcased on its microsites. The platform experience is confusing and neglects the seamless dealer site pass-off essential to brands at this price point >> THE KIACOLLECTIVE TWITTER ACCOUNT, LAUNCHED IN CONJUNCTION WITH THE SOUL, HAS GARNERED MORE THAN 1,300 FOLLOWERS. << © L2 2010 VALUE BRANDS: kia 42
  • 43. FLASH OF GENIUS “A NEW WAY TO ROLL” VIRAL HAMSTER VIDEO Kia Soul’s TV ad featuring dancing hamsters had an explosive viral impact on the Web. Several of the popular commercials received more than 500,000 YouTube views and were prevalent on auto and advertising blogs. Kia further capitalized on hamster buzz with its August launch of an augmented reality game on Facebook that allows enthusiasts to use a Web cam to race against the Soul hamsters. The critters were so popular that they were revived for a November 2009 year- end clearance-sale campaign. Social media efforts have paid dividends and more than 50 percent of upstream traffic to the Kia Soul Collective microsite is from Twitter, MySpace, or Facebook. >> THERE IS LITTLE CONSISTENCY ACROSS KIA DEALERSHIP SITES; EACH HAS INDEPENDENT BRANDING, NAVIGATION ARCHITECTURE, AND TECHNOLOGY. << © L2 2010 VALUE BRANDS: kia 43
  • 44. SEO ANALYTICS 1 2 3 4 5 Organic Keywords kia kia motors kia cars kia dealerships kia sportage Upstream Sites google.com yahoo.com espn.go.com kiamotors.com kiasoul.com Downstream Sites google.com kiamotors.com yahoo.com espn.go.com hyundaiusa.com kiamotorsfinance. Audience Also Visits kiamotors.com kiasoul.com com hyundaiusa.com scion.com SOCIAL MEDIA # of Fans/ SPOTLIGHT ON MOBILE Name Followers/ Observations (Top Followers) Mobile Score: 5 Subscribers In late 2008, Kia became the Bare-bones page with corporate look Facebook Kia Motors America 313 and feel. Brand efforts are scarce; first advertiser on the Google limited links and discussion. Android platform in partnership with the social music application Public relations team tweets news Twitter KMA_PR 1,015 updates and contest information. imeem. Its mobile site is product oriented, and the Kia Soul launch featured an iPhone application. U.S. channel incorporates content from YouTube KiaMotorsAmerica 198 Kia Soul campaign. FEATURED EXPERT: TIMOTHY BRUNS Executive Director of Creative | Cheil North America Aesthetics: 1 FEATURED Messaging: 1 EXPERT: CINDY “Typical templated site design. Would not know what brand it is if I re- GALLOP moved the logo. I like the design and behavior of the slider bar to choose Founder & CEO car models. If that was the main focus and navigational element of the IfWeRanTheWorld .com site, it might be worth writing about.” Aesthetics: 0 Messaging: 1 “Deathly. Standard issue, unengaging.” For more about your brand’s Digital IQ, CONTACT US. © L2 2010 VALUE BRANDS: kia 44
  • 45. hyundai Owner: Hyundai Motor Company Rank: 25 Digital IQ: 94 Classification: Average A strong Korean currency has buttressed Hyundai’s ability to DIGITAL DASHBOARD: Overall Online Performance capture share in the U.S. As peers rolled back marketing budgets, Hyundai poured money into big-ticket traditional advertising, including Superbowl ad buys in 2009. Platform Off-Platform Social Media SEO Messaging Digital efforts have been less aggres- sive. Hyundai’s site lacks purchase- orientation and configurator interac- tivity. Social media efforts are limited, and although initiatives such the “Share Your America” sweepstakes on Facebook are a start, the brand suffers from small followings on the major platforms. >> HYUNDAI’S FACEBOOK FANS INCREASED BY MORE THAN 50% FROM OCTOBER TO NOVEMBER 2009. << © L2 2010 VALUE BRANDS: hyundai 45
  • 46. FLASH OF GENIUS “SHARE YOUR AMERICA” CAMPAIGN Hyundai’s summer 2009 “Share Your America” sweepstakes offered entrants the opportunity to win $1.49 per gallon gas for one year. The campaign integrated content on Facebook, Twitter, TV ads, and a microsite. An interactive Google map with user-uploaded photo entries served as the landing page for the brand’s Facebook account. In con- junction with the campaign, Hyundai tweeted music playlists and weekly iPod giveaways. >> THE HYUNDAI GENESIS MICROSITE IS CONSISTENTLY IN THE TOP FIVE REFERRAL SITES FROM THE BRAND SITE. << © L2 2010 VALUE BRANDS: hyundai 46
  • 47. SEO ANALYTICS 1 2 3 4 5 Organic Keywords hyundai hyundai santa fe hyundai elantra hyundai cars hyundai sonata hyundaigenesis. hyundaimomen- Upstream Sites google.com yahoo.com com tum.com edmunds.com hyundaigenesis. Downstream Sites google.com yahoo.com com facebook.com edmunds.com hyundai hyundaimotor Audience Also Visits momentum.com hyundaigenesis.com finance.com kia.com kiamotors.com SPOTLIGHT ON MOBILE SOCIAL MEDIA Mobile Score: 2.5 # of Fans/ Name The Elantra campaign with Sprint Followers/ Observations (Top Followers) Subscribers and the Genesis campaign with Nokia include integrated banner User-generated "Share Your America" Facebook Hyundai 9,363 app. Brand posts links to interactive ads, downloadable content, and site content. mobile Web surfing. However, the Hyundai PR team tweets and retweets Hyundai site is not smart-phone Twitter hyundainews 2,087 conversations. compatible. Channel showcases commercials and YouTube HMAUSA 216 PR clips. FEATURED EXPERT: FEATURED EXPERT: TIMOTHY BRUNS Executive Director of Creative | Cheil North America CINDY Aesthetics: 2 GALLOP Messaging: 2 Founder & CEO IfWeRanTheWorld “This brand stands for quality and value, and the site .com definitely screams value. But this is also a brand that really broke Aesthetics: 1 Messaging: 1 through the clutter last year with their ‘Quality Assurance’ business “Unremarkable. ‘Everyone is model and a brilliant campaign to match. talking’ sends you to hyundai- Not necessarily creatively, but it was brilliant because it tapped into a momentum.com, where the real consumer insight and current concern of all Americans—the econo- scrolling wall is nice but point- my. It was actually the first car brand whose communications resonated less. (Putting a ‘Like this’ button with me and that I remembered and cited as a great example of a brand beneath every single media article understanding the consumer’s needs at a given time. seems rather pointless, too.) I wish the site could have told this story. Yes, it delivers on offering quality No means of searching through cars, but there was so much opportunity to own the ‘Quality Assurance’ the wall for topics of interest.” philosophy online as they had in the marketplace.” For more about your brand’s Digital IQ, CONTACT US. © L2 2010 VALUE BRANDS: hyundai 47
  • 48. gmc Owner: General Motors Rank: 29 Digital IQ: 91 Classification: Average This truck brand is among the weakest in General Motors’ digital DIGITAL DASHBOARD: Overall Online Performance portfolio. Its cluttered site feels more like a promotional circular than an in- formation tool, and it lacks the e-chat capability found on all other GM sites. Platform Off-Platform Social Media SEO GMC gets an IQ boost from search, Messaging although measurements are likely inflated because of name association with its parent. The brand’s customer- service-oriented Twitter account has substantial follower growth, but absence from YouTube hurts GMC’s social media score. >> GMC ATTRACTED MORE THAN 2,000 NEW TWITTER FOLLOWERS FROM OCTOBER TO NOVEMBER 2009, TOPPING ALL BRANDS IN ABSOLUTE GROWTH DURING THE PERIOD. << © L2 2010 VALUE BRANDS: gmc 48
  • 49. FLASH OF GENIUS ELLEN SHOW GMC TERRAIN PROMOTION GMC provided the Ellen DeGeneres show’s “Twit Crew” with a 2010 GMC Terrain. Ellen’s receptionist, Jeannie, drives the Terrain across the United States helping people in need. Her travels and goodwill are documented through tweets from both ThisIsGMC and TheEllenShow, the latter of which has almost four million followers. Twitter feeds and video from the show are featured on the GMC and Ellen sites. >> MORE THAN 10% OF THE DOWNSTREAM TRAFFIC FROM GMC.COM IS TO PARENT SITE GM.COM. << © L2 2010 VALUE BRANDS: gmc 49
  • 50. SEO ANALYTICS 1 2 3 4 5 Organic Keywords gmc gmc acadia gmc trucks gmc terrain gmc.com gmautobuilder. Upstream Sites google.com yahoo.com gm.com com doubleclick.com gmautobuilder. Downstream Sites com google.com yahoo.com gm.com chevrolet.com gmautobuilder. Audience Also Visits com gmcdealer.com gmacfintools.com gmbuypower.com chevrolet.com SOCIAL MEDIA SPOTLIGHT ON MOBILE Mobile Score: 3 # of Fans/ Name Followers/ Observations GMC boasts a dedicated mobile (Top Followers) Subscribers site. The general GMC frequently posts links to its other GM iPhone app activities on the Web as well as promos Facebook GMC 14,290 and other content. RSS feed has been provides news, down more than a month. blog posts, photos, video, Twitter ThisIsGMC 2,229 News, conversations, and promotions. and event content about the brand. Some GMC-sponsored videos and YouTube No Brand Channel N/A dealer channels. FEATURED EXPERT: FEATURED EXPERT: TIMOTHY BRUNS CINDY GALLOP Executive Director of Creative Founder & CEO Cheil North America IfWeRanTheWorld.com Aesthetics: 1 Aesthetics: 1 Messaging: 1 Messaging: 1 “This site is an online free-standing insert (FSI). “Obligatory holiday reference: ‘smashing through No brand experience. No story. No promise. Just offer, the snow.’ Plus snowflakes. Plus more small print. after offer, after offer. Uninspired. The Terrain virtual demonstration, however, is quite nifty.” It seems all of the American car companies are trying to reinvent themselves and stand for something beyond just, ‘American-made.’ Until GMC starts utilizing the online space, they will need more than a government bailout.” For more about your brand’s Digital IQ, CONTACT US. © L2 2010 VALUE BRANDS: gmc 50
  • 51. smart Owner: Daimler AG Rank: 31 Digital IQ: 81 Classification: Challenged This fuel-efficient new U.S. entrant loses points for digital style but DIGITAL DASHBOARD: Overall Online Performance gains for e-commerce innova- tion: it takes reservations online. Through its site, Smart allows cus- tomers to customize and reserve a Smart Car for just $99 (there is a Platform Off-Platform Social Media SEO Messaging waiting list). Overall, the greater online communi- ty’s efforts eclipse those of the brand, and unaffiliated 2.0 sites have built larger followings than the branded sites. Social media efforts are in their early phases, and a glut of unofficial accounts results in mixed messaging. SPOTLIGHT ON MOBILE Mobile Score: 1 Although Smart employs mobile advertising techniques, the Smart Car site fails to load on a smart phone. >> THE UNOFFICIAL SMART SOCIAL NETWORKING SITE, 451S.COM, HAS ALMOST 2,000 FACEBOOK FANS AND MORE THAN 600 TWITTER FOLLOWERS UNDER THE SMARTCAR HANDLE. << © L2 2010 VALUE BRANDS: smart 51
  • 52. FLASH OF GENIUS SOCIAL NETWORKING FOR SMART PEOPLE? Smart USA created a 2.0 site, smartusainsider.com, which has attracted more than 10,000 users and 200 groups with polls, videos, and other news content. The site’s success is mild relative to unaffiliated competitor smartcar ofamerica.com, which has nearly 10 times more unique monthly visitors. Another unaffiliated 2.0 site, 451s. com, has traffic equal to the branded 2.0 site. The organic sites are suc- cessful despite poor aesthetics and amateur interfaces. >> IMAGES ACCOUNT FOR ONLY 1/16TH OF THE AVERAGE SMARTUSA.COM PAGE. << © L2 2010 VALUE BRANDS: smart 52
  • 53. SEO ANALYTICS 1 2 3 4 5 Organic Keywords smart car smart cars smartcar smart car price smart financingfortwo. Upstream Sites google.com facebook.com smart.com yahoo.com com financingfortwo. Downstream Sites google.com facebook.com smart.com yahoo.com com Audience Also Visits smart.com littledebbicupcakes.com littledebbie.com zapworld.com cintasvip.com SOCIAL MEDIA # of Fans/ Name Followers/ Observations (Top Followers) Subscribers Official page for the Italian Smart car has built out brand Facebook Smart 2,135 content in Italian. Many English-language imitator pages hover at about 1,000 followers each. Twitter smartcarusa 74 Tweets links to Smart car news. YouTube No Brand Channel N/A Several community channels. FEATURED EXPERT: FEATURED EXPERT: TIMOTHY BRUNS CINDY GALLOP Executive Director of Creative Founder & CEO Cheil North America IfWeRanTheWorld.com Aesthetics: 0 Aesthetics: 1 Messaging: 0 Messaging: 2 “Yikes! Looks like a design school project from fresh- “It was seriously depressing to find the new kid man year. Too bad. This brand has so much going for on the block firmly adhering to the stock-in-trade it in terms of consumer relevance and passion toward Web template. I expected something different from the environment. Smart, especially with its tagline, ‘Open your mind.’ The representation of ‘Smartlife’ is deathly—a huge Smart car has built a unique personality with their missed opportunity to do something vividly creative advertising but not their online strategy, obviously. and compelling for a car that represents, as the dense This site could have been so fun to design and build, small-type copy says, a way of life. and could have tapped into a current consumer pas- sion point. But it failed miserably. They have the con- Safeandsmart.com is also deathly. This car brand tent. They have the brand promise. They don’t have should represent itself in a completely different and the right Web master.” cutting-edge way.” For more about your brand’s Digital IQ, CONTACT US. © L2 2010 VALUE BRANDS: smart 53
  • 54. mitsubishi Owner: Mitsubishi Motors Rank: 33 Digital IQ: 76 Classification: Challenged Social media is a bright spot for otherwise-challenged Mitsubishi. DIGITAL DASHBOARD: Overall Online Performance The automaker understands the me- dium and vigorously converses with users who tweet about the brand or post content to its Facebook wall. Platform Off-Platform Social Media SEO But at a price point where acces- Messaging sibility is a competitive advantage, Mitsubishi’s site provides a poor purchase-funnel. Build-your-own functionality is hampered by text- heavy spec content and limited prod- uct views and fails to merge custom- ization process with dealer handoff. >> THE UNAFFILIATED MITSUBISHI SECRETS BLOG TWITTER HAS MORE THAN DOUBLE THE FOLLOWERS OF THE BRAND’S ACCOUNT. << © L2 2010 VALUE BRANDS: mitsubishi 54
  • 55. FLASH OF GENIUS LANCER EVOLUTION FACEBOOK PAGE The Lancer Evolution Facebook page boasts more than 70,000 fans. Mitsubishi leverages the Lancer following to build its branded-page audience with an ad on the Lancer profile. Its prominent call to action resulted in triple-digit percentage fan growth in November 2009. The brand-enhancing Mitsubishi Motors page features user polls, an application focused on the new Outlander, and video content, serving as a second site platform for the brand. >> MANY MITSUBISHI DEALERSHIPS DO NOT HAVE SITE LINKS FROM THE BRAND SITE. << © L2 2010 VALUE BRANDS: mitsubishi 55
  • 56. SEO ANALYTICS 1 2 3 4 5 Organic Keywords mitsubishi mitsubishi cars mitsubishi eclipse mitsubishi lancer mitsubishi motors mitsubishi-motors. Upstream Sites google.com yahoo.com imdb.com facebook.com com mitsubishi-motors. Downstream Sites google.com imdb.com yahoo.com com facebook.com Audience Also Visits mitsubishi.com mitsucars.com mazdausa.com leftlanenews.com nissanusa.com SOCIAL MEDIA # of Fans/ SPOTLIGHT ON MOBILE Name Followers/ Observations (Top Followers) Mobile Score: 1 Subscribers Mitsubishi mobile campaigns are Brand is active on wall, posting several Facebook Mitsubishi 3,701 links per day and conversing with users; limited to local dealership SMS Lancer page has more than 70,000 fans. efforts. The brand site fails to load on a smart phone. Retweets, links, and conversation from Twitter mitsucars 663 Mitsubishi North America. Separate channels for Brazil, Germany, YouTube Mitsubishi Motors 355 and Europe as well as several dealer channels. FEATURED EXPERT: FEATURED EXPERT: TIMOTHY BRUNS CINDY Executive Director of Creative | Cheil North America GALLOP Aesthetics: 2 Founder & CEO Messaging: 2 IfWeRanTheWorld .com “This isn’t the best-looking site, but I really like how they Aesthetics: 1 treated the navigational structure. As I rolled over the different car Messaging: 1 models each rollover populated the window of that particular vehicle “Dreadful. Missed opportunity in with sub-rollover options to interact with. Smart use of interactivity Drive Earth and the i-Miev and easy to use. And if I selected a different top-level category, no mat- electric vehicle sections.” ter where I was in the site, I could roll over the ‘our vehicles’ tab and the behavior would begin again. I appreciated that I did not feel like I was going to be taken out of the site. Is this the best brand experience? Absolutely not. Nor does it differenti- ate from other car sites, but there were a few smart things going on in the user experience criteria.” For more about your brand’s Digital IQ, CONTACT US. © L2 2010 VALUE BRANDS: mitsubishi 56
  • 57. pontiac Owner: General Motors Rank: 37 Digital IQ: 71 Classification: Challenged As GM phases out Pontiac by the end of 2010, it appears to DIGITAL DASHBOARD: Overall Online Performance be starving the brand of digital resources. Although the navigational structure is familiar, the Pontiac site lacks e-chat capabilities and the bells and whistles common to other Platform Off-Platform Social Media SEO Messaging GM sites. The brand’s Twitter chatter is com- mendable, but it is all but invisible on other social media channels. The biggest boost to Pontiac’s IQ derives from paid and organic search traffic. >> THE UNOFFICIAL PONTIAC FACEBOOK FAN PAGE POSTED 30% FAN GROWTH FROM OCTOBER TO NOVEMBER 2009. << © L2 2010 VALUE BRANDS: pontiac 57
  • 58. FLASH OF GENIUS LEVERAGING GM ECONOMIES OF SCALE Sometimes standardization has its benefits, and struggling Pontiac gets a boost from some of General Motors’ collective efforts. After-sales services provided by the GM Owner’s Center— including Onstar diagnostics and “My Dashboard,” which allows owners to digitally track car service— are uncommon at Pontiac’s price point. SEO ANALYTICS 1 2 3 4 5 Organic Keywords pontiac pontiac vibe pontiac g8 pontiac g6 pontiac solstice Upstream Sites google.com yahoo.com gm.com chevrolet.com cadillac.com Downstream Sites google.com yahoo.com gm.com chevrolet.com ask.com smartautosavings. Audience Also Visits newcars.com gmcertified.com gm.com com cadillac.com >> PONTIAC HAS THE LOWEST DIGITAL IQ OF ANY GM BRAND. << © L2 2010 VALUE BRANDS: pontiac 58
  • 59. SOCIAL MEDIA # of Fans/ Name Followers/ Observations (Top Followers) Subscribers Questionable as to whether page is official given limited posts Facebook Pontiac 4,762 from brand, but links to Twitter, Pontiac site, and Wikipedia. Links to info, retweets, and conversations from official Twitter Pontiac 434 Pontiac site. YouTube No Brand Channel N/A Several dealership channels and several fan-led channels. FEATURED EXPERT: FEATURED EXPERT: TIMOTHY BRUNS CINDY GALLOP Executive Director of Creative Founder & CEO Cheil North America IfWeRanTheWorld.com Aesthetics: 0 Aesthetics: 1 Messaging: 0 Messaging: 1 “This site looks as if it was designed in the ’80s— “To some extent, I’m not sure whether it’s worth it is clunky and almost juvenile in look and feel. critiquing Pontiac.com, as the most notable thing It was not compelling whatsoever, and I barely spent about this site is the sad fact that Pontiac is on its any time on it because there was nothing engaging to final close-out as the brand gets phased out on GM’s keep me there. Also, their use of a music track while (let’s hope) ‘road to recovery.’ I interacted within the ‘Experience Pontiac’ section Head of Pontiac and GM VP Susan Docherty’s black was a lame attempt to heighten my senses.” leather jacket kept me watching the ‘sad news’ video. I’m not kidding. It wasn’t a very compelling video otherwise, but (1) it featured a female senior auto- SPOTLIGHT ON MOBILE motive executive (hadn’t come across a single other Mobile Score: 3 woman in all the many videos of talking heads/motor In conjunction with G8 GXP campaign, Pontiac show launches on other sites), (2) she wasn’t wearing placed ads on Maxim’s mobile web properties. a suit, and (3) she was wearing a rather striking black The ads featured download- leather jacket with gold buttons. Those three factors able content and boasted 32 percent engagement. were the most differentiating thing on this site. Apart Pontiac’s mobile site saw from the sadness.” an 11 percent increase in traffic. The brand leverages the GM brand through the parent’s iPhone app. For more about your brand’s Digital IQ, CONTACT US. © L2 2010 VALUE BRANDS: pontiac 59
  • 60. suzuki Owner: Suzuki Rank: 42 Digital IQ: 55 Classification: Feeble There is little positive to say about Suzuki’s digital footprint. Its site DIGITAL DASHBOARD: Overall Online Performance disappoints; the brand has largely ignored social media and is all but invisible in online advertising. Whereas many brands view the Platform Off-Platform Social Media SEO microsite as a laboratory for digital Messaging innovation, the Kizashi model micro- site lacks technology integration and clear brand messaging. If digital is an indication of perfor- mance, it is no surprise that the brand has seen 50 percent declines in U.S. new-vehicle sales. SEO ANALYTICS 1 2 3 4 5 Organic Keywords suzuki cars suzuki suzuki sx4 suzuki.com suzuki equator Upstream Sites suzuki.com google.com yahoo.com globalsuzuki.com facebook.com Downstream Sites google.com suzuki.com yahoo.com globalsuzuki.com friendster.com Audience Also Visits suzuki.com kia.com nissanusa.com subaru.com hyundaiusa.com >> MANY SUZUKI DEALERSHIPS LACK LINKS TO THEIR SITES FROM SUZUKI BRAND PAGE. << © L2 2010 VALUE BRANDS: suzuki 60
  • 61. FLASH OF GENIUS USER TESTIMONIALS Possibly the strongest element of Suzuki’s site is generated by vehicle owners. Owner testimonials for each model add welcome authenticity to the research process. Unfortunately, testimonials are limited to positive accounts, but their inclu- sion overall improves the otherwise lackluster content. SOCIAL MEDIA SPOTLIGHT ON MOBILE Mobile Score: 2 # of Fans/ Name Suzuki experiments with mobile Followers/ Observations (Top Followers) Subscribers advertising in Europe, but its Page does not appear to be brand-sponsored flash-enabled U.S. site fails to Facebook No Brand Page N/A and has no updates, content, or photos. load on a smart phone. Fan base of almost 6,000 and growing. Top non-affiliated account is GenuineSuzuki, Twitter No Brand Account N/A an e-commerce dealer of Suzuki motorcycle accessories. YouTube channel presence is a limited view of YouTube Szkcom 78 Suzuki’s Japanese channel. FEATURED EXPERT: CINDY FEATURED EXPERT: GALLOP Founder & CEO TIMOTHY BRUNS IfWeRanTheWorld Executive Director of Creative | Cheil North America .com Aesthetics: 0 Aesthetics: 0 Messaging: 1 Messaging: 1 “Suzuki’s brand values are described as excitement, “This site is absolutely terrible. straightforward, value, sporty, and spirit. The only one of these values It literally looks like the summer translated in this site was straightforward, and not in a good way. intern cobbled it together from a The rest were not demonstrated or expressed in any way. It looked more set of (bad) PowerPoint slides.” like a bad banking site. There was no brand story, no interactivity, and no experience whatsoever. The design is clunky, insensitive, uninspiring, and not even utilitarian or sporty—which is what comes to my mind when For more about your brand’s I think of Suzuki.” Digital IQ, CONTACT US. © L2 2010 VALUE BRANDS: suzuki 61
  • 62. PREMIUM ENTRY LEVEL Price Point Overall Off-Platform Social Brand Parent Digital IQ IQ Group Platform SEO Rank Rank Messaging Media Volkswagen Volkswagen 1 4 138 Gifted 4 5 4 5 Jeep Chrysler 2 8 128 Gifted 5 3 4 3 Mini BMW 2 8 128 Gifted 5 4 3 3 Chevrolet GM 4 13 124 Gifted 2 4 4 5 Chrysler Chrysler 5 22 101 Average 3 1 4 4 Dodge Chrysler 6 23 100 Average 3 2 4 5 Subaru Fuji 7 28 92 Average 2 3 2 4 Mercury Ford 8 34 75 Challenged 5 1 1 1 Category Average 3.6 2.9 3.3 3.8 Kudos to premium entry-level savants Volkswagen, Jeep, and Mini for offering compelling digital experiences on multiple channels. Jeep and Mini lead all brands in platform, with playful sites that blend interactivity and purchase- orientation. Volkswagen dominates off-site with strong viral efforts and inspired social media applications on every major channel. Lower-ranked brands in this category either failed to translate brand values into provocative online experiences, for example Mercury and Dodge, or missed opportunities to leverage brand equity in social media, like Subaru. © L2 2010 PREMIUM ENTRY-LEVEL BRANDS 62
  • 63. volkswagen Owner: Volkswagen Group Rank: 4 Digital IQ: 138 Classification: Gifted No surprise the brand that brought us the people’s car also DIGITAL DASHBOARD: Overall Online Performance embraces the people’s medium. Volkswagen’s purchase-orientation sets it apart on the Web. After a user inputs a ZIP code into its site, the Platform Off-Platform Social Media SEO navigation architecture introduces Messaging links to interact with a local dealer. The brand also coordinates paid search campaigns with local dealerships. However, as our brand translation experts lament, VW en- thusiasts expect more outside-the-box thinking from this iconic brand. Although playful social media campaigns like “TDI Truth or Dare” and “Meet the Volkswagens” sat- isfy, site content is lackluster. >> GERMAN YOUTUBE CHANNEL “MYVOLKSWAGEN” IS RANKED SIXTH IN GERMANY FOR ALL-TIME SUBSCRIBERS. << © L2 2010 PREMIUM-ENTRY LEVEL BRANDS: volkswagen 63
  • 64. FLASH OF GENIUS THE FUN THEORY Volkswagen hit the mark with a viral video campaign out of Sweden, “The Fun Theory,” which tested the notion that people will do the right thing if you make it more fun. In one video with nearly nine million YouTube views, VW turned a subway staircase into a life-size piano keyboard to see if people would opt for the musical stairs over the adjacent escalator and found that the “fun” element caused commuters to be 66 percent more likely to take the stairs. Site traffic to the “The Fun Theory” microsite boasts about 100,000 monthly unique visitors, approximately 20 per- cent directly from YouTube or Facebook. SPOTLIGHT ON MOBILE Mobile Score: 5 VW’s “Real Racing GTI” iPhone advergame has more than 70,000 downloads since its June 2009 launch and the best ratings and reviews of any auto app surveyed in this study. In addition, the brand launched a smart-phone-enabled site in October 2009 that is dealer search focused and user friendly. >> LIMITED EDITION BEETLE BLUSH’S MICROSITE FEATURES USER REVIEWS AND LINKS TO FACEBOOK. << © L2 2010 PREMIUM ENTRY-LEVEL BRANDS: volkswagen 64
  • 65. SEO ANALYTICS 1 2 3 4 5 Organic Keywords volkswagen vw volkswagon vw.com volkswagen jetta Upstream Sites google.com yahoo.com buddypress.org volkswagen.com facebook.com Downstream Sites google.com yahoo.com vwcredit.com facebook.com buddypress.com livingthesmartlife. volkswagengroup Audience Also Visits volkswagen.com vwcredit.com com america.com threeolives.com SOCIAL MEDIA # of Fans/ Name Followers/ Observations (Top Followers) Subscribers Page entry is playful “Meet the Volkswagens” application that Facebook VW 275,112 analyzes a user’s profile and assigns them a VW model; brand maintains separate pages for each model. Twitter VWGroup 3,424 Twitter app assigns users a VW avatar. With great advertising and Fun Theory viral videos this YouTube MyVolkswagen 383 medium is perfectly tailored to the VW experience. FEATURED EXPERT: FEATURED EXPERT: TIMOTHY BRUNS CINDY GALLOP Executive Director of Creative Founder & CEO Cheil North America IfWeRanTheWorld.com Aesthetics: 2 Aesthetics: 1 Messaging: 2 Messaging: 1 “I have always been a huge fan of Volkswagen. For “This site is completely, utterly, and totally boring. over half a decade, this brand has been cranking out Again, the Web template; the standard approach, to great advertising and connecting with consumers on the extent of completely dumbing down any difference a personal level through its personality as well as between the car models. Even the legendary Beetle is consumer insight. not called out or highlighted for its unique heritage and character (most of which it’s lost in its current The site was clean. Nice, simple design, like the cars, iteration). but I was hoping for some of that personality to come through in the experience. It didn’t. Instead, I felt like Volkswagen is a brand known for the revolution- I was at a car rental counter picking out what car I ary way in which its original advertising agency wanted on a printed placemat. I thought the interface DDB helped introduce it to the marketplace, recently and navigational system was familiar and easy to use brought back into the public consciousness by being and got me right to a deeper dive into each car model, featured in the first season of ‘Mad Men.’ Judging but the tab design is dated, and it just feels flat. I would from this site it’s completely lost its way.” have expected, given VW’s target audience, that there would be more use of sensorial elements like video and For more about your brand’s sound design as well as more experiential interactivity.” Digital IQ, CONTACT US. © L2 2010 PREMIUM ENTRY-LEVEL BRANDS: volkswagen 65
  • 66. jeep Owner: Chrysler Group LLC Rank: 8 Digital IQ: 128 Classification: Gifted The Jeep experience begins on its top-ranked site, which blends DIGITAL DASHBOARD: Overall Online Performance interactive content with top-notch commerce-orientation. From the playful magnetic-poetry inspired “Show How You Live” game to the Platform Off-Platform Social Media SEO visually oriented “4x4 Basics” infor- Messaging mative videos, site content is brand- enhancing and engaging. The brand maintains its own 2.0 site, Jeep Experience, which provides social media feeds, microsite links, and user-generated content. The brand boasts an enormous and active Facebook fan base and a brand channel on YouTube, but has yet to enter the Twittersphere. >> JEEP RANKS SIXTH OVERALL IN FACEBOOK FAN COUNT; VOLKSWAGEN IS THE ONLY NON-LUXURY BRAND WITH MORE FANS. << © L2 2010 PREMIUM ENTRY-LEVEL BRANDS: jeep 66
  • 67. FLASH OF GENIUS INTERACTIVE CONTENT Jeep’s “Try it today” functionality allows users to click, drag, and drop objects to test out various vehicle features. Highlights include the heated seat feature where, with a click of the mouse, users watch as snow piled on the car’s seats melts. Customers can also try out the Sirius backseat TV with “Backseat Atten- tion Span” ratings or drop different tough objects into the “Trail Rated” Drop Zone to examine the vehicle’s multiterrain capabilities. The playful comments change with the replay of each interactive vignette, adding personality. SPOTLIGHT ON MOBILE Mobile Score: 4 Jeep’s sophis- ticated mobile advertising ranges from full- screen ads on the Greystripe Mobile Gaming platform to a mobile call to action in conjunction with its Six Flags Wrangler giveaway. The content-rich mobile site includes options to “Shop for Vehicles” or “Join the Community.” >> THE JEEP “FUN WHEELS” COMMERCIAL RANKS THIRD AMONG TOP VIDEO VIEWS ON A BRANDED YOUTUBE CHANNEL. << © L2 2010 PREMIUM ENTRY-LEVEL BRANDS: jeep 67
  • 68. SEO ANALYTICS 1 2 3 4 5 Organic Keywords jeep jeep wrangler jeep patriot jeep.com jeep liberty Upstream Sites google.com yahoo.com dodge.com facebook.com jeepdealer.com Downstream Sites google.com yahoo.com facebook.com dodge.com youtube.com mopar-accessories. chryslergroupllc. Audience Also Visits com jeepdealer.com mopar.com com jeep4x4center.com SOCIAL MEDIA # of Fans/ Name Followers/ Observations (Top Followers) Subscribers Facebook Jeep 241,400 Frequent brand updates and active user participation. JeepWorld handle for a Jeep accessories e-commerce site Twitter No Brand Account N/A has more than 1,000 followers. YouTube thejeepchannel 1,680 Commercials, off-roading, and extreme product shots. FEATURED EXPERT: FEATURED EXPERT: TIMOTHY BRUNS CINDY GALLOP Executive Director of Creative Founder & CEO Cheil North America IfWeRanTheWorld.com Aesthetics: 4 Aesthetics: 4 Messaging: 5 Messaging: 5 “Of all the car sites, Jeep.com was the most refresh- “Here was a brand trying to do something different. ing, the most fun, and the most true to its brand and The ‘Show How You Live’ functionality is fun—you values. It was interactive, engaging, and very intuitive. drag and drop words to form your own personal Smart use of environmental images and demonstra- statement and then ‘put it out there.’ Bit painstaking tion of the vehicles in the context of someone’s life. and you can’t say anything naughty (normal human instinct), but entertaining. It was the only car site I reviewed that actually trans- lated the brand campaign into something interactive I liked the pop up ‘Me’ on the relevant models along on their site. Plus there were a lot of dynamic things the bottom for you to see which had each feature, I stumbled upon while exploring the site that added and the way they did the Jeep ‘climb’ over the edge life and dimension to the experience. of the window on rollover. High marks to Jeep for really putting effort into crafting a distinctive and This, combined with small but significant sensorial engaging experience.” details, made me rate this site the best use of the medium.” For more about your brand’s Digital IQ, CONTACT US. © L2 2010 PREMIUM ENTRY-LEVEL BRANDS: jeep 68
  • 69. mini Owner: BMW AG Rank: 8 Digital IQ: 128 Classification: Gifted Mini comes in second, after Jeep, in the platform category with a site DIGITAL DASHBOARD: Overall Online Performance that oozes playfulness without compromising purchase-orienta- tion. Brand-enhancing e-mail mes- saging and fun (albeit impractical) mi- Platform Off-Platform Social Media SEO crosite The Open One further convey Messaging that driving a Mini is pure delight. For a brand that does such a great job building community on its site, Mini has had some surprising hic- cups when it comes to social media. After amassing more than 150,000 Facebook fans, the brand ditched its Mini USA Facebook page for a more globally oriented official page launched in Fall 2009. The brand has yet to embrace Twitter. >> THE MINI USA FACEBOOK PAGE, LAUNCHED BEFORE THE OFFICIAL BRAND PAGE, HAS MORE THAN 166,000 FANS. << © L2 2010 PREMIUM ENTRY-LEVEL BRANDS: mini 69
  • 70. FLASH OF GENIUS EVEN SPECS CAN BE FUN While the Mini brand has many whiz kid moments, perhaps what it does most brilliantly is allow users to see beyond the car’s miniature dimen- sions. Abandoning the typical text- heavy specifications content found on most auto sites, Mini uses multi- media graphics, video,and sound to demonstrate just how big the Mini is. Users can see the Mini model next to a four-man Mariachi band complete with instruments or view a video of their Mini trunk as it is filled with “a bunch of stuff.” SPOTLIGHT ON MOBILE Mobile Score: 2 Brand has taken innovation leaps with mobile games and roadside assistance but is failing at the easy stuff: its flash-enabled site is impossible to enter from a mobile device. >> MINI’S YOUTUBE PAGE IS THE ONE-HUNDREDTH MOST SUBSCRIBED ALL TIME FOR SPONSORS. << © L2 2010 PREMIUM ENTRY-LEVEL BRANDS: mini 70
  • 71. SEO ANALYTICS 1 2 3 4 5 Organic Keywords mini cooper mini mini usa mini cooper dealers minicooper Upstream Sites google.com mini.com yahoo.com facebook.com doubleclick.com Downstream Sites google.com yahoo.com facebook.com mininova.org youtube.com Audience Also Visits minimania.com vw.com subaru.com insideline.com eloanpersonal.com SOCIAL MEDIA # of Fans/ Name Followers/ Observations (Top Followers) Subscribers Facebook welcome is a branded box with info about cars and Facebook Mini 36,144 the declaration “It’s Official;” “Two Untamed” video feature is funny and brand-enhancing. Several Mini dealerships tweet. Cooper_Fan_Club unaffiliated Twitter No Brand Account N/A account has almost 500 followers. Similar to site, YouTube videos are entertaining and playful. YouTube Mini 1,609 Verbiage is brand-enhancing. FEATURED EXPERT: FEATURED EXPERT: TIMOTHY BRUNS Executive Director of Creative | Cheil North America CINDY Aesthetics: 4 GALLOP Messaging: 4 Founder & CEO IfWeRanTheWorld “I have always been a fan of this site experience. .com Mini has accomplished the huge feat of creating a unique personality Aesthetics: 5 Messaging: 5 and differentiation in the market that is sustainable and ownable. “Full marks to Mini for a terrific The small visual details in the interface of this site as well as the subtle, site. Distinctively designed, highly but brand relevant interactivity and sensorial elements, sound, animation, engaging, genuinely interactive, etc., make this site amazingly fun. There was some smart thinking when it great tone of voice, entertainment came to the user experience in regards to brand loyalty with the option to value, good use of sound, simple save the design of the car you built, and their section called, ‘Stay in the and easy to navigate, lots of good Loop,’ which allowed loyalists to feel part of a bigger community as well stuff (as opposed to lots of stuff).” as continuing a customer-brand dialogue. This site truly captures the essence and values of the brand.” For more about your brand’s Digital IQ, CONTACT US. © L2 2010 PREMIUM ENTRY-LEVEL BRANDS: mini 71
  • 72. chevrolet Owner: General Motors Rank: 13 Digital IQ: 124 Classification: Gifted The highest ranked of GM’s seven brands; Chevy also leads all au- DIGITAL DASHBOARD: Overall Online Performance tomakers in search engine opti- mization. The classic American car brand is among the most trafficked sites. In addition, Chevrolet rallies Platform Off-Platform Social Media SEO huge communities on multiple Face- Messaging book pages and draws hundreds of thousands of unique visitors to promotional microsites such as Chevy Transformers. Chevy’s Achilles’ heel is a subpar site that struggles to integrate intuitive navigability across its 15 models. SPOTLIGHT ON MOBILE Mobile Score: 4 Chevy takes risks in mobile advertising, specifically in the emerging markets of India and China. The brand has rolled out several SMS campaigns in the U.S. >> STRATEGIC VISION’S 2009 NEW-VEHICLE EXPERIENCE STUDY FOUND THAT 13% OF CHEVY OWNERS HAVE NEVER USED THE WEB. << © L2 2010 PREMIUM ENTRY-LEVEL BRANDS: chevrolet 72
  • 73. FLASH OF GENIUS VOLTAGE MICROSITE & 2.0 SITE Ailing GM is effusive about its electric hybrid, the Chevy Volt. Scheduled for release in November 2010, the Volt is the muse for the brand’s best digital efforts. The microsite content focuses on product education, and the Volt- focused 2.0 site includes blogs, fo- rums, videos, and links to Facebook and Twitter. The Volt’s Twitter follow- ing tops 1,300, almost three times as large as Chevrolet’s. >> OCTOBER 2009 ESTIMATES OF UNIQUE MONTHLY VISITORS TO CHEVY’S “TRANSFORM YOUR GARAGE” MICROSITE IS GREATER THAN TRAFFIC TO 60% OF BRANDED SITES IN THE STUDY. << © L2 2010 PREMIUM ENTRY-LEVEL BRANDS: chevrolet 73
  • 74. SEO ANALYTICS 1 2 3 4 5 Organic Keywords chevrolet chevy chevy equinox chevy volt chevy.com Upstream Sites google.com yahoo.com doubleclick.com gm.com facebook.com Downstream Sites google.com yahoo.com facebook.com gm.com youtube.com Audience Also Visits gmacfintools.com chevydealer.com gmbuypower.com gmautobuilder.com gmc.com SOCIAL MEDIA # of Fans/ Name Followers/ Observations (Top Followers) Subscribers Posts links to news, Webcasts, video, and promotions. Facebook Chevrolet 27,820 Official Camaro site has more than 150,000 fans. Tweets PR updates and converses with users, addressing Twitter Chevrolet 578 complaints about the brand. Channel features product videos and behind-the-scenes YouTube Chevrolet Vehicles 517 design content. FEATURED EXPERT: FEATURED EXPERT: TIMOTHY BRUNS Executive Director of Creative | Cheil North America CINDY Aesthetics: 1 GALLOP Messaging: 1 Founder & CEO IfWeRanTheWorld “I feel like all of the automobile sites licensed the same .com Web development software and slapped a different logo on it. I under- Aesthetics: 1 Messaging: 1 stand that Buick, Cadillac, and Chevrolet are all part of GM, so theoreti- “I think I’ve seen this Web tem- cally it makes sense that the site structures would look and feel like they plate before. Not a lot else to say. came from the same parent company. There is something to be said for creating the same consumer experience when it comes to intuitive naviga- Another missed opportunity—this tion online. I wish that one would tap into the emotional side of purchas- is a brand with fantastic history, ing a car, however, instead of just an online spec sheet. heritage, and therefore, poten- tially, values.” The TV commercial I saw for Chevy Camaro, as cheesy as it was, tapped into an insight for that brand and that kind of driver. Commercials are used for brand building and boosting sales. Why don’t brands treat their sites in the same manner? Especially given that the site experience is probably the second best thing to actually touching a car in a showroom. There is nothing that would keep me coming back to this site except to compare costs or something of that nature. For more about your brand’s Digital IQ, CONTACT US. © L2 2010 PREMIUM ENTRY-LEVEL BRANDS: chevrolet 74
  • 75. chrysler Owner: Chrysler Group LLC Rank: 22 Digital IQ: 101 Classification: Average Amidst sales declines and finan- cial distress, Chrysler faces the DIGITAL DASHBOARD: Overall Online Performance formidable task of convincing Americans to buy its cars. It’s a challenge the brand embraces liter- ally on the Web, shying away from Platform Off-Platform Social Media SEO innovative efforts in favor of a com- Messaging merce focus. Although the “Spin It Your Way” de- sign contest on YouTube is a refresh- ing exception, the brand’s digital advertising is generally lackluster. Despite diminishing brand equity, Chrysler maintains respectable Web traffic and a social media following. SPOTLIGHT ON MOBILE Mobile Score: 1 Chrysler has taken steps in mo- bile with SMS-integrated cam- paigns, however many of its site features fail to load on a PDA. >> CHRYSLER’S VIDEO INTRODUCTION TO THE “SPIN IT YOUR WAY” DESIGN CHALLENGE HAS RECEIVED MORE THAN ONE MILLION YOUTUBE VIEWS. << © L2 2010 PREMIUM ENTRY-LEVEL BRANDS: chrysler 75
  • 76. FLASH OF GENIUS INTEGRATION OF DEALER SITES Chrysler’s site flows with ease into a commercial transac- tion. As the user customizes a model the configurator simultaneously searches local inventory. Upon completion, the customer is seamlessly directed to a dealer site where, unlike other automaker sites, the brand experience continues. Every dealer site has identi- cal design and functionality. >> THE CHRYSLER TWITTER HANDLE RANKS SEVENTH IN TOTAL FOLLOWERS AS A RESULT OF TWEETS FROM BRAND REPRESENTATIVES ED GARSTEN AND SCOTT ANDERSON. << © L2 2010 PREMIUM ENTRY-LEVEL BRANDS: chrysler 76
  • 77. SEO ANALYTICS 1 2 3 4 5 chrysler town and Organic Keywords Chrysler country chrysler 300 pt cruiser chrysler.com Upstream Sites google.com yahoo.com dodge.com pointroll.com facebook.com Downstream Sites google.com yahoo.com dodge.com chryslergroupllc.com jeep.com mopar-accessories. Audience Also Visits chryslerdealer.com chryslerretirees.com mopar.com chryslergroupllc.com com SOCIAL MEDIA # of Fans/ Name Followers/ Observations (Top Followers) Subscribers Facebook Chrysler 11,131 Limited content and media. Twitter Chrysler 3,327 Brand shares news, links to social media content, and retweets. “Spin It Your Way” contest solicited users to submit original video YouTube Chrysler 300 1,693 content around the Chrysler 300. FEATURED FEATURED EXPERT: EXPERT: CINDY GALLOP TIMOTHY Founder & CEO | IfWeRanTheWorld.com BRUNS Aesthetics: 1 Executive Director Messaging: 1 of Creative Cheil North “And again...The home page was so boring that the America most exciting-looking prospect was to click on the box in the bottom right Aesthetics: 2 corner that read: Messaging: 1 ‘Our plan. Read about Chrysler Group LLC’s exciting plans for the fu- “Step 1: Cut and paste Web ture. Learn more.’ template from other generic car brands. That was very small type and a very low-key position for Chrysler Group LLC’s exciting plans for the future. But they had me at ‘exciting.’ Step 2: Offer no engaging type of brand experience or story that I wanted to learn more. I couldn’t. It wouldn’t let me. And I tried preci- supports the brand promise. sion clicking in every way possible. Step 3: Offer no interactivity that So I went to ‘The Chrysler Experience’ instead, where I encountered a gets a user closer to a transaction large amount of stuff, none of which told me what that experience was, except for a generic car configura- and all of which left me to find my own way into it. tor tool. Oh, Chrysler also urges you to ‘Share.’ ‘How to share with the Chrysler Step 4: Cut and paste brand logo Community’ is presented in a way that makes you feel that that’s the last in top left corner. thing you want to do.” Step 5: Click on ‘Quit browser’ call-to-action button. For more about your brand’s Enough said.” Digital IQ, CONTACT US. © L2 2010 PREMIUM ENTRY-LEVEL BRANDS: chrysler 77
  • 78. dodge Owner: Chrysler Group LLC Rank: 23 Digital IQ: 100 Classification: Average Like parent Chrysler’s, the Dodge site excels at greasing the wheels DIGITAL DASHBOARD: Overall Online Performance for a dealer handoff, but it hits the skids on brand translation. Face- book is the focus of the brand’s social media efforts: its page has attracted Platform Off-Platform Social Media SEO more than 20,000 fans and posts Messaging links, polls, and other features daily. The Dodge Boys Red Zone sweepstakes microsite draws significant traffic, suggesting Dodge is meeting its online customer’s desire for promotions. Additional off-platform interactive efforts are scarce. SPOTLIGHT ON MOBILE Mobile Score: 2 The Dodge Caliber Beats iPhone application earns respectable reviews but suffers limited downloads. The Dodge site fails to load on a mobile device. >> DODGE BOASTS ALMOST DOUBLE THE SITE TRAFFIC OF SIBLING CHRYSLER. << © L2 2010 PREMIUM ENTRY-LEVEL BRANDS: dodge 78
  • 79. FLASH OF GENIUS “RED LETTER DODGE” BLOG Dodge’s “Red Letter Dodge” blog is the brand’s social media hub. Fans can access the latest Dodge blog posts, participate in Dodge polls, and connect with the brand through Flickr feeds and Facebook content. The site attracts 8,000 to 10,000 unique visitors monthly. >> DODGE IS RANKED SIXTH AMONG ALL BRANDS FOR NUMBER OF DIGG MENTIONS. << © L2 2010 PREMIUM ENTRY-LEVEL BRANDS: dodge 79
  • 80. SEO ANALYTICS 1 2 3 4 5 Organic Keywords dodge dodge trucks dodge challenger dodge caliber dodge.com Upstream Sites google.com yahoo.com pointroll.com aol.com dodgedealer.com dodgered- Downstream Sites google.com yahoo.com facebook.com aol.com zonesweeps.com dodgeboysred- mopar-accessories. Audience Also Visits zonesweeps.com com techauthority.com dodgedealer.com gltghostling.com SOCIAL MEDIA # of Fans/ Name Followers/ Observations (Top Followers) Subscribers Page features Dodge models and the Dodge Red Boys Facebook Dodge 22,613 racing team; includes links, photos and videos, limited conversations with fans. FowlerDodge, an Oklahoma City dealership’s account, boasts Twitter No Brand Account N/A the highest non-brand-affiliated following. YouTube DodgeChallenger1 926 Product information focused on the Challenger model. FEATURED EXPERT: FEATURED EXPERT: TIMOTHY BRUNS CINDY GALLOP Executive Director of Creative Founder & CEO Cheil North America IfWeRanTheWorld.com Aesthetics: 1 Aesthetics: 1 Messaging: 1 Messaging: 1 “Step 1: Cut and paste Web template from Chrysler “Same old template. This time I could open the link so consumers know they have no differentiating for Chrysler’s exciting new plans, and I kind of brand story or message. wished I hadn’t. Step 2: Offer no engaging type of brand experience It turns out that you can download PDFs of 16 or story that supports the brand promise. presentations. Yes, that’s right, nothing at all about what those exciting new plans are on the site com- Step 3: Offer no interactivity that gets a user closer municated through—hey, what the hell—maybe a to a transaction except for the generic car configu- concise paragraph or some fun, vibrant video. rator tool. Sixteen separate presentation PDFs. To be down- Step 4: Cut and paste brand logo in top left corner loaded by you. Alongside those PDFs, the brand Step 5: Click on “Quit browser” call-to-action button exhorts ‘Follow us on Twitter.’ I think not.” It is Groundhog Day.” For more about your brand’s Digital IQ, CONTACT US. © L2 2010 PREMIUM ENTRY-LEVEL BRANDS: dodge 80
  • 81. subaru Owner: Fuji Heavy Industries Rank: 28 Digital IQ: 92 Classification: Average As one of “America’s Hottest Brands,” Subaru could do more DIGITAL DASHBOARD: Overall Online Performance to leverage its brand equity and strong customer base online. The brand boasts great site traffic, but visitors are left underwhelmed by Platform Off-Platform Social Media SEO poor technology integration. Messaging An attempt to excite customer enthusiasm, the brand’s unique “My Subaru” page feeds owner stories into model specs. The brand’s other nods to its online community include a presence on all major social media platforms. >> THE UNOFFICIAL SUBARU FACEBOOK FAN PAGE HAS AMASSED MORE THAN 20,000 FANS. << © L2 2010 PREMIUM ENTRY-LEVEL BRANDS: subaru 81
  • 82. FLASH OF GENIUS MY SUBARU “Owner Spotlight” content on the “My Subaru” section of the site in- cludes owner stories and pictures. Unlike other brands, which separate user-generated content from model specs, Subaru integrates dialogue into featured vehicle content. SPOTLIGHT ON MOBILE Mobile Score: 2 Subaru used iLoop Mobile’s mFinity platform to deploy a multimodal mobile campaign that integrated SMS, mobile Internet and Web promotion. The WAP site featured advanced graphic design and horizontal navigation, with Subaru mobile wallpapers, ringtones and video downloads. The site also offered SMS and e-mail alerts, picture galleries, WRX model and rally race info, as well as tell-a-friend viral marketing functionality. >> SUBARU’S YOUTUBE SUBSCRIBERS GREW 33% FROM OCTOBER TO NOVEMBER 2009. << © L2 2010 PREMIUM ENTRY-LEVEL BRANDS: subaru 82
  • 83. SEO ANALYTICS 1 2 3 4 5 Organic Keywords subaru subaru forester subaru outback suburu subaru impreza Upstream Sites google.com yahoo.com doubleclick.com facebook.com edmunds.com Downstream Sites google.com yahoo.com facebook.com edmunds.com youtube.com Audience Also Visits cars101.com subaruforester.org dealer.com mazda.com suzukiauto.com SOCIAL MEDIA # of Fans/ Name Followers/ Observations (Top Followers) Subscribers Facebook Subaru of America, Inc. 4,055 News, videos, and links to campaigns. Links to news releases, Subaru content, other social Twitter subaru_usa 1,332 networking content. Channel has commercials and short films featuring YouTube Subaru of America 843 Subaru vehicles. FEATURED EXPERT: FEATURED EXPERT: TIMOTHY BRUNS CINDY GALLOP Executive Director of Creative Founder & CEO Cheil North America IfWeRanTheWorld.com Aesthetics: 1 Aesthetics: 1 Messaging: 1 Messaging: 2 “I think I have seen this site before? “Another completely standard-issue site. Oh yes, I have… Mazda. They both have the same Nothing distinctive about any of it. No sense of what filter tool (but with slightly different criteria) that makes Subaru different and desirable. And nothing allowed me to slide a series of scales based on price, whatsoever (that I could find, and I looked really mpg, seating capacity, max cargo, and horsepower hard) alluding in any way to the fact that Subaru, and then populate the page with models that fit my very laudably, has a highly effective gay-friendly criteria. They either must have licensed the tool or positioning and sales strategy.” the same technologist implemented it, as I do not believe they are part of the same parent company? It wasn’t the prettiest tool but it was quite useful. And like Mazda, you could swap logos and the site would feel the same with no differentiation.” For more about your brand’s Digital IQ, CONTACT US. © L2 2010 PREMIUM ENTRY-LEVEL BRANDS: subaru 83
  • 84. mercury Owner: Ford Motor Company Rank: 34 Digital IQ: 75 Classification: Challenged A quick glance at upstream and downstream sites for mercury DIGITAL DASHBOARD: Overall Online Performance vehicles.com gives insight into the brand’s biggest problem on- line and otherwise; it is so over- shadowed by parent Ford that the Platform Off-Platform Social Media SEO brand never stands out alone. Messaging The site, although predictable, scores major IQ points for leverag- ing the intuitive, interactive, and purchase-oriented Ford template. However, beyond the safe confines of its personal Web property, Mercury is invisible online. The brand has zero social media presence and is argu- ably easier to find on Ford.com than on Google. >> “FORD” SHOWS UP TWICE ON THE MERCURY HOME PAGE; “MERCURY” IS ONLY DISPLAYED THREE TIMES. << © L2 2010 PREMIUM ENTRY-LEVEL BRANDS: mercury 84
  • 85. FLASH OF GENIUS THE FORD STORY The Ford Story is arguably the most sophisticated branded 2.0 site out there. Serving as the social media control center for Ford and affiliated Lincoln/Mercury brands, the site contains links to Ford’s many social media identities. The main page uses videos, blog posts, and Twitter feeds to share news about the Ford brands. Vehicle owners have the opportunity to share their stories, upload photos, and blog about the brands. >> 18% OF TRAFFIC TO THE FORD STORY MICROSITE COMES DIRECTLY FROM FACEBOOK. << © L2 2010 PREMIUM ENTRY-LEVEL BRANDS: mercury 85
  • 86. SEO ANALYTICS 1 2 3 4 5 Organic Keywords mercury mercury mariner mercury milan mercury cars mercury mountaineer Upstream Sites google.com ford.com yahoo.com fordvehicles.com lincoln.com Downstream Sites google.com ford.com yahoo.com facebook.com fordvehicles.com onlinevehicle Audience Also Visits lincoln.com financing.com webview.biz ford.com volvocars.com SOCIAL MEDIA # of Fans/ Name Followers/ Observations (Top Followers) Subscribers Facebook No Brand Page N/A Limited branded content on Facebook. Unable to locate any official or unofficial Mercury Twitter No Brand Account N/A Twitter presence. YouTube No Brand Channel N/A Numerous Lincoln Mercury dealership channels. FEATURED EXPERT: FEATURED EXPERT: TIMOTHY BRUNS Executive Director of Creative | Cheil North America CINDY Aesthetics: 3 GALLOP Founder & CEO Messaging: 4 IfWeRanTheWorld “I am actually impressed with the Mercury site from .com an interactive standpoint. Aesthetics: 2 Messaging: 2 I love the 360 degree click, drag, and rotate tool for each model and the “That old template comes way I was offered customization tools in the same experience. There was out again. a consistent experience for each model, including beautifully shot video for the “exterior” section of each car. It felt very compact, and the entire The most compelling thing on experience was held within the space of each model. this site is Sync—which could have been demonstrated so much I wouldn’t put it on my best aesthetic design list, but I give credit to more compellingly.” Mercury for thinking about their consumers and what would be useful to them when researching a vehicle. The site was more about each model and the brand than just price and selling. It was on the verge of a true test drive online.” For more about your brand’s Digital IQ, CONTACT US. © L2 2010 PREMIUM ENTRY-LEVEL BRANDS: mercury 86
  • 87. PREMIUM Price Point Overall Off-Platform Social Brand Parent Digital IQ IQ Group Platform SEO Rank Rank Messaging Media Volvo Ford 1 15 117 Gifted 3 3 5 3 Infiniti Nissan 2 19 109 Average 3 4 4 2 Acura Honda 3 20 108 Average 4 2 3 5 Buick GM 3 20 108 Average 5 3 3 3 Saab GM 5 29 91 Average 3 3 2 2 Lincoln Ford 6 32 80 Challenged 4 3 1 2 Sichuan Hummer 7 36 71 Challenged 3 1 2 2 Tengzhong Category Average 3.6 2.7 2.9 2.7 Digital efforts in this category were generally uninspired and boilerplate. Volvo is the only brand to eke its way into the “Gifted” ranks, largely because of its multichannel Twilight campaign, which generated colossal social media growth. Digital initiatives in this category were dominated by parent companies. Most brands earned marks for leveraging technology and functionality from parent assets, but lost points for generic branding and lack of innovation. For example, Lincoln’s site received a boost from Ford’s excellent configurator, while Saab’s lost points for poor brand translation, overwhelmed by GM’s generic look. © L2 2010 PREMIUM BRANDS 87
  • 88. volvo Owner: Ford Rank: 14 Digital IQ: 118 Classification: Gifted As Volvo moves to abandon its standard boxy design, its market- DIGITAL DASHBOARD: Overall Online Performance ers are also stepping out of the box and moving into digital. The Swedish automaker, recently offloaded by Ford to Chinese com- Platform Off-Platform Social Media SEO pany Geely, scores major IQ points Messaging for leading social media efforts. Innovative Facebook applications and documentary video content have led to astounding social media fan growth. The brand leveraged its recent Twilight: New Moon product placement with a microsite, Twitter content, and a YouTube channel. However, perhaps unsurprising for a brand built on a foundation of safety, its site is just that: way too safe. SPOTLIGHT ON MOBILE Mobile Score: 3 Volvo sponsored content on Edmunds.com’s mobile site as part of the XC60 launch. Volvo’s site is not entirely mobile- compatible. >> TWO OF THE TOP THREE PAID SEARCH PLACEMENTS FOR THE TERM “VOLVO” ON GOOGLE AND BING ARE VOLVO DEALERSHIPS. << © L2 2010 PREMIUM BRANDS: volvo 88
  • 89. FLASH OF GENIUS TWILIGHT & TWITTER Razorfish’s November 2009 study, “Feed,” indicated that the top reason consumers follow brands on Twitter is for access to exclusive offers and promotions. Volvo’s XC60 launch attracted sub- stantial Twitter followers as the brand tweeted puzzles from the “What Drives Edward” contest. Volvo incor- porated tweets about the contest in an interactive YouTube ad. >> THE MOST PROMINENT CALL TO ACTION IN THE VOLVO CONFIGURATOR IS A 1-800 NUMBER; ONLINE DEALER QUOTE DOES NOT INCORPORATE THE SPECS OF THE USER-CUSTOMIZED CAR. << © L2 2010 PREMIUM BRANDS: volvo 89
  • 90. SEO ANALYTICS 1 2 3 4 5 Organic Keywords volvo volvo xc90 volvo cars volvo usa volvo malaysia Upstream Sites volvo.com google.com youtube.com itrack.it doubleclick.com Downstream Sites google.com youtube.com facebook.com yahoo.com live.com Audience Also Visits volvo.com lincoln.com ipdusa.com vw.com mazdausa.com SOCIAL MEDIA # of Fans/ Name Followers/ Observations (Top Followers) Subscribers Innovative content includes Drive Around the World game, C30 Facebook Volvo 7,881 Personaliser and heartwarming S60 Blind Artist video. Twitter VolvoXC60 2,920 Primarily Twilight: New Moon sweepstakes tweets. Brand leverages great documentary video with links to other YouTube VolvoCarNews 1,118 social media and digital promotions; New Moon dominates XC60 Channel and provides links to enter giveaway. FEATURED FEATURED EXPERT: EXPERT: CINDY GALLOP TIMOTHY Founder & CEO | IfWeRanTheWorld.com BRUNS Aesthetics: 1 Executive Director Messaging: 1 of Creative Cheil North “It’s never a good sign when the brand’s New Moon America promotion is the most interesting thing about the site. I applaud Volvo for Aesthetics: 1 ‘What Drives Edward,’ which brought this car marque to the attention of Messaging: 1 an audience that would otherwise be likely to overlook it completely. But “Pretty standard site, but intuitive that literally is the most interesting thing about this site (which presum- and useful. Nothing to write home ably is why Volvo upfronted it). about experientially. I did like the The New Moon promotion is authentically true to the brand’s decades- interactive virtual game testing old ‘safety’ positioning, but that is not capitalized on in any meaningfully your safety in the city by using competitive and compelling way. The ‘Safety’ section is standardized, re- your keyboard to demonstrate the cessive, and a big missed opportunity. And the site itself is standard issue automatic “City Safety” function in format and navigation. The ‘Concept Lab’ looked interesting, but every of the XC60 model. time I tried to enter I got an error page, so eventually I gave up trying.” I wish there were more interactive demos. But the design was clean. It felt like a credible brand. But For more about your brand’s nothing that stood out.” Digital IQ, CONTACT US. © L2 2010 PREMIUM BRANDS: volvo 90
  • 91. infiniti Owner: Nissan Motor Company Rank: 18 Digital IQ: 109 Classification: Average Nissan’s premium brand is plac- ing major bets on digital adver- DIGITAL DASHBOARD: Overall Online Performance tising, including a media buy on Hulu, an interactive campaign on the Yahoo! weather page, and a Twittorati sponsorship. Platform Off-Platform Social Media SEO Infiniti’s moves into social media Messaging include an interactive Facebook application, “Starplay,” and a new Twitter account, InfinitiNews, but neither effort has attracted follower volumes on par with the brand’s premium peers. The brand’s site, while product- and purchase-oriented, is boilerplate. >> INFINITI IS ONE OF THE FEW BRANDS IN ITS PRICE POINT WITHOUT A YOUTUBE CHANNEL. << © L2 2010 PREMIUM BRANDS: infiniti 91
  • 92. FLASH OF GENIUS DEALER SITE VALIDATION Infiniti’s Internet Certified Retailer program recognizes dealerships that demonstrate exceptional digital marketing and customer service. The program gives dealerships an incen- tive to invest digitally and deliver the Infiniti brand promise throughout the online purchase funnel. These deal- erships are recognized with a seal on the Infiniti brand site. SPOTLIGHT ON MOBILE Mobile Score: 4 Infiniti’s July 2009 “Own the Sky” G37 campaign encouraged users to upload photos from their mobile phones for a chance to win prizes. The campaign also included an SMS component. The brand hosts a product-focused mobile site for smart phone users. >> TWITTER HANDLE INFINITIUSA HAS MORE THAN 300 FOLLOWERS WITHOUT A SINGLE TWEET. << © L2 2010 PREMIUM BRANDS: infiniti 92
  • 93. SEO ANALYTICS 1 2 3 4 5 infiniti financial Organic Keywords infiniti infinity infinity cars services infiniti cars Upstream Sites infiniti.com google.com yahoo.com doubleclick.com facebook.com Downstream Sites google.com yahoo.com facebook.com aol.com edmunds.com Audience Also Visits infiniti.com acura.com audi.com lexus.com newcarinsider.com SOCIAL MEDIA # of Fans/ Name Followers/ Observations (Top Followers) Subscribers Page opens to “Inspired Lineup” content; Infiniti G Convertible Facebook Infiniti 11,217 Starplay application allows you to compose your own music through Facebook. Twitter infinitinews 844 Brand initiates conversations about cars and Infiniti news. YouTube No Brand Channel N/A The Nissan channel houses some Infiniti content. FEATURED EXPERT: FEATURED EXPERT: TIMOTHY BRUNS CINDY GALLOP Executive Director of Creative Founder & CEO Cheil North America IfWeRanTheWorld.com Aesthetics: 1 Aesthetics: 2 Messaging: 1 Messaging: 3 “This site was like looking at and interacting with a “Home page looks quite nice (by this time my personal full color, glossy brochure you would take home from bar was dropping like a limbo stick). Obligatory sea- the showroom. I appreciated the use of stylized pho- sonal references—snow-laden trees and ice. tography and imagery, but it did not take advantage Missed opportunities lay with the Infiniti M 2011 of the medium. The Internet gives brands an opportu- content and ‘Industry-first Technology’ section. The nity to allow a consumer to interact with them and do model’s Blind Spot Intervention System sounded more than just click through pages. great, but there was no detail or demonstration, and it The convenience of shopping from my home versus could have been represented in an experiential way. visiting 30 different car showrooms in one day is ap- Infiniti does invite site comments and asks for site rat- pealing, but the online experience should be worth my ing, which at least shows willingness for feedback.” while. The overall design of this site was fine. It wasn’t bad, but it certainly wasn’t good. Again, no experi- ence, no interactivity, no life.” For more about your brand’s Digital IQ, CONTACT US. © L2 2010 PREMIUM BRANDS: infiniti 93
  • 94. acura Owner: Honda Motor Co., Ltd. Rank: 20 Digital IQ: 108 Classification: Average Although Acura’s digital foot- print lacks inspiration, the brand DIGITAL DASHBOARD: Overall Online Performance understands how to incorporate technology across Web media. A site highlight is the interactive showroom, which offers users an Platform Off-Platform Social Media SEO intimate experience with each Acura Messaging model, ease of navigation, and high- quality visuals. The brand is present on all social media platforms, but has not attracted a substantial following. Mobile is a no- table hole in Acura’s digital competence, but strength in search keeps this brand riding in the middle of the pack. >> THE TWITTER ACCOUNT LINKED WITH ACURARATINGS.COM — A NON-BRAND-AFFILIATED 2.0 SITE — BOASTS NEARLY AS MANY FOLLOWERS AS THE BRAND-AFFILIATED TWITTER ACCOUNT. << © L2 2010 PREMIUM BRANDS: acura 94
  • 95. FLASH OF GENIUS PRODUCT-LEVEL SOCIAL MEDIA Acura is one of the few brands that offers a Facebook pages for each model, which allows customers access information and discusses the brand at the product level. Users can link to model pages from the “Acura Vehicles” box on Acura’s parent page and from the “Favorite Pages” box on model pages. With more than 3,500 fans the TSX page boasts more fans than the Acura brand page. SPOTLIGHT ON MOBILE Mobile Score: 2 Acura made a foray into mobile advertising with the 2006 RDX launch, but lacks a mobile- friendly site. >> IN PAID SEARCH FOR THE TERM ACURA, INFINITI.COM COMES IN SECOND BEHIND ACURA.COM. << © L2 2010 PREMIUM BRANDS: acura 95
  • 96. SEO ANALYTICS 1 2 3 4 5 Organic Keywords acura acura mdx acura tl acura.com acura dealer location acurafinancial Upstream Sites google.com honda.com yahoo.com services.com facebook.com Downstream Sites google.com honda.com yahoo.com facebook.com lexus.com Audience Also Visits audiusa.com hondafinancialservice.com infinitiusa.com ahm-ownerlink.com lexus.com SOCIAL MEDIA # of Fans/ Name Followers/ Observations (Top Followers) Subscribers The brand hosts a separate page for each model. The TSX page has over 3,500 fans—beating out the brand page. Facebook Acura 2,682 Brand posts promotions with partners such as W Hotels. Page includes links to Edmunds reviews. Twitter Acura_Insider 1,347 Tweets from Acura’s PR team. TV commercials and other content, including interviews YouTube Acura 204 with Acura designers. FEATURED EXPERT: FEATURED EXPERT: TIMOTHY BRUNS CINDY GALLOP Executive Director of Creative Founder & CEO Cheil North America IfWeRanTheWorld.com Aesthetics: 2 Aesthetics: 2 Messaging: 2 Messaging: 2 “The overall design and functionality is traditional, “Compared with many other sites, the home page here but stylish and clean. I like the use of rollover naviga- was nice, clean, and relatively attractive, if standard tion. It not only enticed me to engage but also gave me issue and uninspiring. No clear sense of what Acura more information as to what to expect in that particu- stands for and what distinguishes it as a marque. lar section. Acura actually has interesting positioning for the From an information design/user experience stand- TSX: ‘This isn’t trust fund luxury. This is startup, point, the use of video in each car model section was do-it-yourself, gonna be the next big thing luxury,’ particularly interesting, as it wasn’t just repurpos- which is potentially in tune with the times and could ing a TV ad and slapping it online. Acura thought to be leveraged, but no sign of that here.” create relevant content specifically for the Web, and I applaud them for thinking about the content strategy of the Web property. However, was it the best creative use of videos? No. Nor was it interactive in any way. There is really no brand story that allows a user to un- For more about your brand’s derstand what Acura stands for as a premium brand.” Digital IQ, CONTACT US. © L2 2010 PREMIUM BRANDS: acura 96
  • 97. buick Owner: General Motors Rank: 20 Digital IQ: 108 Classification: Average In a frequently told tale, Buick employs the standard DIGITAL DASHBOARD: Overall Online Performance GM template, yielding a cleanly organized site with a focus on customer service and a strong purchase orientation. Platform Off-Platform Social Media SEO What it scores in functionality, Messaging however, it lacks in inspiration. The brand is making efforts with social media, famously admitting in August that overwhelming negative feedback on Twitter and other blogging sites led to the cancellation of an SUV model. SPOTLIGHT ON MOBILE Mobile Score: 3 Mirroring the mobile strategy of most GM brands, Buick boasts a smart-phone compatible mobile site. Brand content and information are also included in GM iPhone app. >> BUICK DOUBLED ITS TWITTER FOLLOWERS FROM MID-OCTOBER TO MID-NOVEMBER 2009. << © L2 2010 PREMIUM BRANDS: buick 97
  • 98. FLASH OF GENIUS LACROSSE TWITTER Buick is integrating Twitter content onto its site, with an invitation to “ Join the Conversation” and tweet from a link on the landing page. Users can see real-time com- ments from other site users and add their own comments through Buick’s site or Twitter. The brand’s Twitter efforts extend beyond the computer screen, as it hosts local “Tweet-ups” and other blogger outreach events. >> UNIQUE VISITORS TO THE BUICK SITE HAVE MORE THAN DOUBLED YEAR-ON-YEAR. << © L2 2010 PREMIUM BRANDS: buick 98
  • 99. SEO ANALYTICS 1 2 3 4 5 Organic Keywords buick buick enclave buick lacrosse 2010 buick lacrosse buick lucerne Upstream Sites weather.com google.com yahoo.com facebook.com youtube.com Downstream Sites weather.com google.com yahoo.com gm.com facebook.com Audience Also Visits gmautobuilder.com gmacfintools.com cadillac.com gmbuypower.com gm.com SOCIAL MEDIA # of Fans/ Name Followers/ Observations (Top Followers) Subscribers Buick posts information about new models and campaigns, Facebook Buick 4,165 but content is flat and brand fails to generate conversation. Conversation includes tweet-ups and retweets from the design Twitter Buick 294 team and links to brand news. TV commercials, interviews with designers, and celebrities YouTube Buick 106 and PR media clips. FEATURED EXPERT: FEATURED EXPERT: TIMOTHY BRUNS CINDY GALLOP Executive Director of Creative Founder & CEO Cheil North America IfWeRanTheWorld.com Aesthetics: 3 Aesthetics: 3 Messaging: 4 Messaging: 3 “Even though this site had a traditional structure that “Landing on the homepage you are instantly greeted is not very appealing, the brand stayed true to its with a snippet of music and film which dies away very marketing line of, ‘Take a Look at Me Now.’ quickly, leaving you wondering, ‘What was that?’ A bit of the TV commercial? (Yes.) Obligatory season- Buick created a fairly intuitive, self-contained and al allusion: ‘It’s the most wonderful line of the year.’ interactive feature experience for each model. This is Plus a LOT of small print—a common feature on a a step up for an American car company both experi- number of these sites. entially and conceptually. I was able to interact with highlighted components of the external and internal The site boasts some nice graphics, but on the whole features of the car and enjoyed video demonstrations fairly standard. Again with some great missed oppor- for each feature. tunities buried in there, most notably the history and heritage of Buick (yes, it is possible to redeploy it in a Nicely done. I did take a new look at you Buick, and it way that can drive contemporary appeal).” has elevated my perception.” For more about your brand’s Digital IQ, CONTACT US. © L2 2010 PREMIUM BRANDS: buick 99
  • 100. saab Owner: General Motors Rank: 29 Digital IQ: 91 Classification: Average Saab’s identity crisis on the Web reflects its crisis on the lots DIGITAL DASHBOARD: Overall Online Performance and demonstrates a one-size-fits- all approach that fails with digital branding. From car configuration to after-sales customer service, site Platform Off-Platform Social Media SEO users are constantly pushed from Messaging the brand’s platform to an umbrella GM site. Both Facebook and YouTube pages have been aban- doned in the wake of brand troubles, while tweets linking to crisis updates are a proverbial digital white flag. SPOTLIGHT ON MOBILE Mobile Score: 3.5 Saab boasts one of the most attractive and user- friendly mobile sites. Brand content is included on general GM iPhone app. >> WHILE SAAB NEW-VEHICLE SALES ARE DOWN 59% ANNUALLY, TRAFFIC TO THE BRANDED SITE HAS ONLY DECREASED 14% IN 2009. << © L2 2010 PREMIUM BRANDS: saab 100
  • 101. FLASH OF GENIUS CHANGE PERSPECTIVE The Change Perspective microsite is the rare Saab digital real estate without an overbearing GM logo posted all over it. Beautifully designed and brilliantly executed, the site highlights the brand’s Swedish heritage. Stunning graphics and interactive features lead the user through a dialogue about Saab’s perspective on the challenges facing the auto industry, including safety and fuel-efficiency. >> UNOFFICIAL TWITTER, SAABWARRANTY, RETWEETS, CONVERSES WITH USERS, AND HAS NEARLY TWICE AS MANY FOLLOWERS AS SAAB’S OFFICIAL TWITTER DOES. << © L2 2010 PREMIUM BRANDS: saab 101
  • 102. SEO ANALYTICS 1 2 3 4 5 saab dealership Organic Keywords saab saab usa saabusa locator who makes saab Upstream Sites google.com saab.com gm.com yahoo.com gmautobuilder.com Downstream Sites google.com gm.com gmautobuilder.com saab.com doubleclick.com SOCIAL MEDIA # of Fans/ Name Followers/ Observations (Top Followers) Subscribers Facebook Saab 13,943 Page hasn’t been updated since August 2009; limited content. Twitter saabnewsroom 482 Glorified RSS feed — links to Saab news; no conversations. Last video update was September 2009; videos include historic YouTube SaabCarsOfficial 273 commercials from the 1960s, design features, and event footage. FEATURED EXPERT: FEATURED EXPERT: TIMOTHY BRUNS CINDY GALLOP Executive Director of Creative Founder & CEO Cheil North America IfWeRanTheWorld.com Aesthetics: 1 Aesthetics: 3 Messaging: 0 Messaging: 3 “This is a classic example of a car going through an “Nice, perfectly adequate site with good, clean navi- identity crisis once it has been purchased by a huge gation, and I liked the Saab Newsroom ‘voices from American car company. Having owned two Saab con- around the globe.’ vertibles in my past, pre-American made, I truly loved But a huge missed opportunity to make the brand my Saabs and was a huge loyalist. And then Saab lost really stand out from the crowd by leveraging Saab’s its identity. Even their marketing started to become aircraft heritage in a distinctive and compelling way. conventional. The ‘Born from jets’ history timeline video, and the In their communications, I am invited to “change my stunning concept cars, are all buried. Another tagline perspective” at saab.com so naturally I was expecting not delivered on: ‘Move your mind’ should apply to an immersive, thought-provoking experience, and ‘Move and change your perception of what constitutes also one that would regain my loyalty to the brand. a car site forever.’” But instead, I came to a typical, badly designed site for a car that has no personality or differentiation and literally was slapped on the parent company site template.” For more about your brand’s Digital IQ, CONTACT US. © L2 2010 PREMIUM BRANDS: saab 102
  • 103. lincoln Owner: Ford Motor Company Rank: 32 Digital IQ: 80 Classification: Challenged Lincoln scores platform points for its user-friendly, purchase- DIGITAL DASHBOARD: Overall Online Performance oriented Ford navigation template and configurator. But as the most luxurious of Ford’s three brands, the automaker suffers Platform Off-Platform Social Media SEO from the parent’s emphasis on Web Messaging standardization. The only evidence of pure Lincoln digital content is the underwhelming and seldom-visited Lincoln Lounge microsite. The brand is not present on any of the three major social media platforms, and its SEO efforts are feeble. >> LINCOLN LOUNGE MICROSITE FEEDS TWITTER CONTENT FROM E-MAIL MAGAZINE URBANDADDY. << © L2 2010 PREMIUM BRANDS: lincoln 103
  • 104. FLASH OF GENIUS FORD CONFIGURATOR Almost every brand offers a build- your-own option on its site, but Ford pulls ahead of the pack with a con- figurator that leads the user nearly to the dealer lot. The build-your-own process is visual and user-friendly and guides the consumer through a logical sequence of decisions. As the user selects vehicle preferences, the con- figurator searches local dealership inventory for matches, while simulta- neously adjusting monthly payment estimates. A clear call to action at the bottom of the screen allows the consumer to request a quote or see available local inventory at any stage in the configuration process. >> ALMOST ONE QUARTER OF LINCOLN’S SITE TRAFFIC COMES FROM FORD.COM. << © L2 2010 PREMIUM BRANDS: lincoln 104
  • 105. SEO ANALYTICS 1 2 3 4 5 Organic Keywords lincoln lincoln navigator lincoln mks lincoln cars lincoln mkx Upstream Sites google.com ford.com yahoo.com pointroll.com adtunes.com Downstream Sites google.com ford.com yahoo.com fordvehicles.com facebook.com FEATURED EXPERT: SOCIAL MEDIA CINDY # of Fans/ GALLOP Name Followers/ Observations Founder & CEO (Top Followers) Subscribers IfWeRanTheWorld .com Imitation page does not appear to be official. Aesthetics: 1 Facebook No Brand Page N/A Very little outreach here, and last post was in April 2009. Limited content. Messaging: 1 “As someone once said: ‘No one Twitter No Brand Account N/A Limited presence. ever bought anything while they were asleep.’” YouTube No Brand Channel N/A Several dealership channels. FEATURED EXPERT: SPOTLIGHT ON MOBILE Mobile Score: 3 TIMOTHY BRUNS Executive Director of Creative | Cheil North America October 2009 WAP site launch Aesthetics: 1 enhanced Lincoln’s mobile pres- Messaging: 4 ence. Multichannel marketing ef- “Lincoln is trying to reach higher, and it achieves its forts, including mobile Web ban- goal somewhat in communications. Online, I give the brand kudos for ners, SMS campaigns and bar creating a consistent interactivity and navigation experience for each car codes, drive mobile site traffic. model: I can experience a 360-degree view of each car, with options to customize the model’s interior and exterior. A video intro for each model (with an option to skip) shows they are aspir- ing to deliver an immersive experience. The overall aesthetic and design was weak and felt very templatized. Had they reached just a little more, they could have had something. But again, kudos (especially to a huge American car brand) for reaching at all.” For more about your brand’s Digital IQ, CONTACT US. © L2 2010 PREMIUM BRANDS: lincoln 105
  • 106. hummer Owner: Sichuan Tengzhong Rank: 36 Digital IQ: 71 Classification: Challenged Add poor digital aptitude to Hum- mer’s long list of problems. Strong DIGITAL DASHBOARD: Overall Online Performance multimedia content on its site, includ- ing the H3T “In the Open” videos, is overshadowed by a confusing inter- face that makes navigation difficult. Platform Off-Platform Social Media SEO Recently sold by GM to Chinese Messaging company Sichuan Tengzhong, the brand continues to leverage after- sales customer service from its former owner. Although a link to Facebook from its site is a start, Hummer is nearly invisible on social media platforms. Unfortunately, online buzz is largely limited to chatter about the brand’s uncertain future. SPOTLIGHT ON MOBILE Mobile Score: 1 Hummer teamed up with Mode Labs in Europe to create a branded mobile phone. Its flash-enabled site fails to load on a PDA. >> HUMMER.COM IS ONE OF THE FEW SITES THAT EXPERIENCED MASSIVE TRAFFIC DECLINES IN 2009, POSTING A 60% DECREASE IN UNIQUE VISITORS. << © L2 2010 PREMIUM BRANDS: hummer 106
  • 107. FLASH OF GENIUS LIMITING WINDOW SIZE Hummer is one of the only brands that showcases its site in a restricted Web window. The small size frames site content in a distinctive way, and embedded navigation links and scroll bars augment its industrial feel. >> HUMMER PURCHASES SEARCH TERMS FROM GOOGLE AND BING. << © L2 2010 PREMIUM BRANDS: hummer 107
  • 108. SEO ANALYTICS 1 2 3 4 5 gas mileage for a general motors Organic Keywords hummer hummer h3 hummer hummers h3 hummer hummermexico. Upstream Sites google.com hummereurope.com yahoo.com gm.com com.mx hummermexico. Downstream Sites google.com hummereurope.com yahoo.com com.mx gm.ca autodiscountgroup. Audience Also Visits motortrend.com autoblog.com cars.com dodge.com com SOCIAL MEDIA # of Fans/ Name Followers/ Observations (Top Followers) Subscribers New page is dominated by links. Unofficial page from an Facebook Hummer 1,552 enthusiast seeking donations to buy a Hummer attracts more fans. Unofficial HummerWarranty account from Dan Vaden Motors has Twitter No Brand Account N/A more than 700 followers. YouTube No Brand Channel N/A Limited dealer channels. FEATURED EXPERT: FEATURED EXPERT: TIMOTHY BRUNS CINDY GALLOP Executive Director of Creative Founder & CEO Cheil North America IfWeRanTheWorld.com Aesthetics: 2 Aesthetics: 4 Messaging: 2 Messaging: 2 “I really wish whoever designed the visual graph- “When you say ‘Like nothing else’ you’d better deliver ics on the Hummer ‘Game On’ TV spot had designed on it. Not quite, in this case. And when you make a bold the site. I was expecting the site to take on the same statement like, ‘New era. Same commitment’ and invite look, feel, and behavior. But it didn’t. The site was the visitor to read more, it’s more fun if the link doesn’t definitely more industrial looking, which is unique to just take you to a press release. the Hummer brand. The rest left a lot to be desired The look and feel is Hummer-like in styling, but the visually and experientially. site itself is not particularly revolutionary. And when I did appreciate the attempt to create a build-your- you’re checking out the 2009 H3 Alpha, it would be own Hummer tool with a brand tone. But the look good if the video you’re invited to click on doesn’t turn and feel got in the way of its actual intuitiveness from out to be headed ‘2008 H3 Alpha’ and doesn’t start a user experience standpoint. In fact, it was confus- with the words ‘Coming in 2008.’ Just seems a teensy ing. This site should scream testosterone! But like all bit like no one’s working on the monitoring, updating of the automobile sites I have visited, convention and and upkeep of the site.” sameness wins over.” For more about your brand’s Digital IQ, CONTACT US. © L2 2010 PREMIUM BRANDS: hummer 108
  • 109. LUXURY Price Point Overall Off-Platform Social Brand Parent Digital IQ IQ Group Platform SEO Rank Rank Messaging Media Audi Volkswagen 1 1 157 Genius 5 5 4 3 BMW BMW 2 2 142 Genius 4 5 4 4 Mercedes-Benz Daimler AG 3 3 140 Genius 5 5 5 3 Lexus Toyota 4 8 128 Gifted 4 5 3 5 Porsche Porsche 5 14 119 Gifted 4 4 4 3 Cadillac GM 6 15 117 Gifted 3 3 4 4 Jaguar Tata 7 26 93 Average 2 4 3 2 Land Rover Tata 8 27 92 Average 4 3 1 1 Tesla Tesla 9 41 55 Feeble 1 1 3 2 Lotus Lotus 10 43 43 Feeble 2 1 1 1 Price Point Average 3.4 3.6 3.2 2.8 Our three Genius brands reside in the strongest category in this study, luxury. Top brands at this price point offer attractive and intuitive sites, useful iPhone apps, innovative digital advertising campaigns, and huge social media followings. Inspired efforts such as Audi’s A8 Facebook debut and the Mercedes mbrace mobile platform push the limits of the medium. Laggards include Tata’s Jaguar and Land Rover, brands whose marketing efforts suffered from company wide reductions in marketing spend, and independently owned and under resourced Lotus and Tesla. © L2 2010 LUXURY BRANDS 109
  • 110. audi Owner: Volkswagen Group Rank: 1 Digital IQ: 157 Classification: Genius High accolades to our top brand, Audi, for creating a comprehen- DIGITAL DASHBOARD: Overall Online Performance sive digital experience that de- lights on every online channel. As our brand experts affirm, its site offers intuitive navigation and an Platform Off-Platform Social Media SEO elegant interface while maintaining a Messaging focus on commerce. Strong across all social media plat- forms, Audi offers content tailored to the medium and has attracted large fan followings as a result. The brand recently used Facebook to solicit user feedback for its new concept car released at the 2009 Los Angeles Auto Show. With its debut of the A8, Audi also became the first automaker to provide sneak peeks on the popu- lar social networking site. >> AUDI RANKS FOURTH IN FACEBOOK FANS BEHIND LUXURY JUGGERNAUTS PORSCHE AND FERRARI AND COMPETITOR BMW. << © L2 2010 LUXURY BRANDS: audi 110
  • 111. FLASH OF GENIUS TECHNOLOGY DEFINED OWNER SITE The Audi owners’ site features the “Technology Defined” section, which offers detailed video instructions explaining how to use the cars’ technology features. The videos are brief, informative, and visually relevant. Users can also access the videos while on-the-go by sending a text message from the Audi site to their iPhones, where the video loads after one touch. SPOTLIGHT ON MOBILE Mobile Score: 5 Audi recognizes the power of engaging users via mobile, especially on the iPhone platform. Its second game application, “Truth in 24,” has positive user reviews and over 3.2 million downloads. The video- racing app challenges users to monitor fuel and tire pressure as they race at Le Mans. Audi’s other application, the “A4 Driver Challenge,” has received over 80,000 reviews on iTunes. Audi en- thusiasts love Apple: according to Mobile Marketer, an astounding 95 percent of 2008 mobile site traffic to audiusa.com came from an iPod touch or iPhone. >> THE BMWSAUBERF1TEAM HAS MORE THAN 8,000 TWITTER FOLLOWERS. << © L2 2010 LUXURY BRANDS: audi 111
  • 112. SEO ANALYTICS 1 2 3 4 5 Organic Keywords audi audi usa audi r8 audi q5 audiusa Upstream Sites google.com audi.com yahoo.com facebook.com bmwusa.com Downstream Sites audi.com google.com yahoo.com facebook.com youtube.com Audience Also Visits audi.com bmwusa.com acura.com porschedealer.com vw.com SOCIAL MEDIA # of Fans/ Name Followers/ Observations (Top Followers) Subscribers Interactive content is a mainstay, with features including livestreams of major announcements, polls, and links to the Facebook Audi 381,981 configurator, Audi e-tron, and Audi innovation pages on the brand site. Brand views Twitter as a PR platform to broadcast news, Twitter AudiUSANews 2,366 new-vehicle releases, and events. Features original content including celebrities test-driving Audi YouTube The Audi Channel 1,287 vehicles in cities worldwide. FEATURED EXPERT: FEATURED EXPERT: TIMOTHY BRUNS CINDY GALLOP Executive Director of Creative Founder & CEO Cheil North America IfWeRanTheWorld.com Aesthetics: 4 Aesthetics: 4 Messaging: 4 Messaging: 4 “This is a car brand that understands how to utilize “Clean, cool, attractive homepage. Navigation is the digital space. The use of sublevel navigational straightforward and easy with clearly flagged price rollovers in the main menu is intuitive. The use of and payment options. And it even provides highly interactivity and sensorial elements, such as sound, visible phone numbers for customer service contact.” is consistent with Audi’s brand values. I particularly liked the build-your-own Audi configu- rator tool in each car detail section and the 360- degree image tool to showcase the aesthetic details of each car model. From a pure design standpoint, there is nothing breakthrough, but overall it is an intuitive user experience.” For more about your brand’s Digital IQ, CONTACT US. © L2 2010 LUXURY BRANDS: audi 112
  • 113. bmw Owner: BMW AG Rank: 2 Digital IQ: 142 Classification: Genius BMW is evidence that a strong online legacy can breed sophis- DIGITAL DASHBOARD: Overall Online Performance ticated digital intelligence. The German automaker has used the Web as a tool to enhance its brand since the heralded launch of BMW Film. Eight years later the brand Platform Off-Platform Social Media SEO Messaging continues to produce on-message, innovative content while facilitating purchase and communicating with advocates on the edge of the network. Advertising campaigns such as the 1 Series Facebook launch and the “Expression of Joy” campaign include strong multichannel messaging and incorporate micro- sites, iPhone apps, and social media content. The brand has tremendous followings on Facebook and YouTube, and its site is clean and navigable—particularly impres- sive given its extensive product line. >> WITH ALMOST 50,000 CHANNEL VIEWS FROM MID-OCTOBER THROUGH MID-NOVEMBER 2009, BMW TOPS ALL BRANDS WITH THE HIGHEST GROWTH IN YOUTUBE VIEWERSHIP << . © L2 2010 LUXURY BRANDS: bmw 113
  • 114. FLASH OF GENIUS Z4 “EXPRESSION OF JOY” CAMPAIGN BMW’s “Expression of Joy” campaign to promote the Z4 incorporated a microsite, documentary film, iPhone app and Facebook page. The center of the campaign is a painting by artist Robin Rhode rendered with the wheels of a Z4 and colorful palette. The microsite features delightful video footage set to music so captivating that site enthusiasts were contacting BMW for recordings. SPOTLIGHT ON MOBILE Mobile Score: 5 The iPhone is the leading mobile device among BMW drivers, with 37 percent penetration. The brand caters to its audience with a series of successful apps. The “BMW Z4” iPhone app received one million downloads within its first few weeks. Others include the “BMW F-1” racing app and the “BMW TV” app. BMW produces additional iPhone compatible media, including podcasts. Its mobile site is compatible with all smart-phone devices. >> THE BMWSAUBERF1TEAM HAS MORE THAN 8,000 TWITTER FOLLOWERS. << © L2 2010 LUXURY BRANDS: bmw 114
  • 115. SEO ANALYTICS 1 2 3 4 5 Organic Keywords bmw bmwusa bmw usa bmw cars bmwusa.com Upstream Sites google.com bmw.com yahoo.com facebook.com youtube.com Downstream Sites google.com yahoo.com facebook.com bmw.com ebay.com Audience Also Visits bmwusa.com bimmerspecialist.com audi.com audiusa.com bimmerfest.com SOCIAL MEDIA # of Fans/ Name Followers/ Observations (Top Followers) Subscribers Recently launched official page shows promise and inherited the Facebook BMW 405,645 hundreds of thousands of fans previously affiliated with unofficial efforts. LPR news from BMW in Munich. Some dealer and unofficial handles Twitter bmw_global 406 have followers in the thousands. Videos featuring new products, product design Q&A, and behind-the- YouTube BMW 4,810 scenes commercial footage have attracted massive viewership. FEATURED EXPERT: FEATURED EXPERT: TIMOTHY BRUNS CINDY GALLOP Executive Director of Creative Founder & CEO Cheil North America IfWeRanTheWorld.com Aesthetics: 3 Aesthetics: 2 Messaging: 2 Messaging: 2 I came to this site with enthusiasm and brand loyalty “Wow. What a letdown. This is BMW we’re talking as an owner of this fine vehicle—only to be incredibly about! Nothing about this site reflected my (high) ex- disappointed in the experience. Yes, it has beautiful pectations, until it sent me to bmw.tv, which met me with photography and is designed nicely, although it was sound and movement and instantly started feeling much very standard in structure. more like what I was looking for. Why not start there? As I was navigating through the site, trying des- The missed opportunities here were all buried in perately to find something to appease my love and ‘Uniquely BMW,’ which is just a tab at the top of the loyalty for this brand, I clicked on, ‘Test Drive’ as a home page. WHY? sublevel navigational element under each car model. BMW describes itself in this section as: Of course, I was expecting the online translation of, “Independent. Unmistakable. Unique. Admittedly, we’re ‘The Ultimate Driving Machine’ and an experience, not the typical car company.’ like most of their external communications that would knock my driving gloves off. Again, thoroughly disap- Then please, move away from the typical car company pointed. What I got was data entry fields to make an site. Because you could—so easily.” appointment with a local dealer to test drive a model. Not that this kind of offering is bad, in fact it For more about your brand’s is smart—but it was a let-down experientially.” Digital IQ, CONTACT US. © L2 2010 LUXURY BRANDS: bmw 115
  • 116. mercedes-benz Owner: Daimler AG Rank: 3 Digital IQ: 140 Classification: Genius Like fellow German geniuses Audi and BMW, luxury carmaker DIGITAL DASHBOARD: Overall Online Performance Mercedes-Benz showcases its digital savoir-faire across nearly every online platform. Its site em- ploys great technology and balances the competing demands of brand- Platform Off-Platform Social Media SEO Messaging building and purchase orientation. Microsites such as The Object of Desire for the E-Class coupe are beautifully done and leave no question about the target audience. The brand is well-served by its social media messaging and ranks among the top 10 in follower count on Facebook, YouTube, and Twitter. Mercedes-Benz mobile tops the industry, balancing functionality, advertis- ing, and in-car mobile technology. >> MERCEDES-BENZ RANKS 2ND IN ABSOLUTE FAN GROWTH ON FACEBOOK, ADDING NEARLY 50,000 FANS FROM MID-OCTOBER TO MID-NOVEMBER 2009. << © L2 2010 LUXURY BRANDS: Mercedes-Benz 116
  • 117. FLASH OF GENIUS MBRACE MOBILE PLATFORM Mercedes new mbrace mobile plat- form acts as an app store for your car. Integrated into all 2010 models, the platform gives drivers remote access to vehicle features, including alarm activation, vehicle finder, and power locks, from a smart phone. The voice-operated system has capabilities identical to GM’s “On- Star” communications software, but migrates functionality directly to the driver’s mobile phone. >> MERCEDES-BENZ DEALER SITES RETAIN SIMILAR ARCHITECTURE, WHICH INCLUDES MB FINANCIAL TOOLS, CONFIGURATOR, AND ONLINE CHAT. << © L2 2010 LUXURY BRANDS: Mercedes-Benz 117
  • 118. SEO ANALYTICS 1 2 3 4 5 Organic Keywords mercedes benz mercedes mbusa mercedes benz usa benz Upstream Sites google.com yahoo.com mercedes-benz.com mercedes-amg.com bmwusa.com Downstream Sites google.com yahoo.com mercedes-amg.com facebook.com youtube.com mercedes-benz. performanceproduct Audience Also Visits com bmwusa.com audi.com mercedescenter.com 4benz.com SOCIAL MEDIA FEATURED EXPERT: # of Fans/ TIMOTHY Name (Top Followers) Followers/ Observations BRUNS Subscribers Executive Director of Creative Page has grown tremendously without a lot of Facebook Mercedes-Benz 185,405 innovative content. Brand posts nearly daily; a lot Cheil North of SLS-AMG information. America Pictures, retweets and conversations in German Aesthetics: 2 and English about the museum and its classic Twitter MB_Museum 2,544 cars. MercedesBenz_TV also has a twitter Messaging: 1 handle. Brand also boasts Mercedes-Benz USA and “This site looked very sophisticated YouTube Mercedes-Benz TV 3,066 Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week channels. in design and feel. But it lacked a brand story or interactivity beyond FEATURED EXPERT: the customization tool that seems CINDY GALLOP to be the cost of entry for every car Founder & CEO | IfWeRanTheWorld.com site. I liked the tool and thought it Aesthetics: 2 Messaging: 4 was very easy to use but it lacked the WOW I expect from such a “Disappointing. Very. An extremely prestigious brand premium brand. There were no with an extremely standard site. The missed opportunities are in the compelling, sensorial elements, ‘Only Mercedes-Benz’ section, especially in ‘Advanced Technologies.’ such as video or sound design, to Night-view assist, rear-view monitor—could be deployed so much more reinforce the brand values of engi- compellingly.” neering, performance, and design. When I clicked to view the car models, it was like I was taken to a SPOTLIGHT ON MOBILE Mobile Score: 5 visual directory or yellow pages. Mercedes-Benz was one of the earliest It was very disappointing overall.” adopters of mobile marketing and boasts several iPhone applications with advanced functionality, including financial services access, product showcases, and gaming. The mbrace mobile platform integrates smart-phone technology with automobile For more about your brand’s functions. Digital IQ, CONTACT US. © L2 2010 LUXURY BRANDS: Mercedes-Benz 118
  • 119. lexus Owner: Toyota Motor Corporation Rank: 8 Digital IQ: 128 Classification: Gifted From subtly branded media clips on the L Studio microsite to DIGITAL DASHBOARD: Overall Online Performance e-chat services tailored to those interested in its hybrid vehicles, this luxury brand hits the right tone on the Web. Platform Off-Platform Social Media SEO Lexus understands the importance of Messaging multichannel brand and model-level marketing. Recent vehicle launches have incorporated a combination of interactive digital and mobile efforts that do more than merely compliment traditional advertising. Its site is func- tional and visual, and is refreshingly different from parent Toyota’s. Although present on all major so- cial media platforms, Lexus hasn’t matched the innovation or the follower count of its more socially adept peers: Audi, BMW, and Mercedes-Benz. >> LEXUS MAGAZINE’S ONLINE COMPONENT FEATURES TRIPS, CULTURAL EVENTS, AND NEW VEHICLE INFORMATION FOR LEXUS OWNERS. << © L2 2010 LUXURY BRANDS: lexus 119
  • 120. FLASH OF GENIUS LEXUS HYBRID MULTI- CHANNEL MARKETING Lexus uses a variety of digital media channels to educate consumers on its hybrid models. The brand site features interactive videos, detailing hybrid mechanics and de- sign, as well as dedicated e-chat services. Complementing site content is the Lexus Hybrid Liv- ing microsite, which builds an online community around luxury, design, and eco-consciousness. The site high- lights restaurants, spas, hotels, and retailers that echo the Lexus ethos and has a dedicated Facebook fan page. The hybrid model, LF-Ch, has its own Twitter handle. SPOTLIGHT ON MOBILE Mobile Score: 4 Lexus has a solid mobile site where users can find a dealer and locate product informa- tion. The brand recently ad- vertised the HS hybrid model on MSNBC’s iPhone app. >> THE NUMBER OF VIDEO VIEWS ON THE LEXUS YOUTUBE SITE INCREASED ALMOST 60% MONTH-ON-MONTH FROM OCTOBER TO NOVEMBER 2009. << © L2 2010 LUXURY BRANDS: lexus 120
  • 121. SEO ANALYTICS 1 2 3 4 5 Organic Keywords lexus lexus.com lexus hybrid lexus hs lexus suv Upstream Sites google.com yahoo.com doubleclick.com cnn.com facebook.com Downstream Sites google.com yahoo.com lexus-lfa.com facebook.com lexusfinancial.com yourlexusdealer. Audience Also Visits com infinitiusa.com lincoln.com acura.com audi.com SOCIAL MEDIA FEATURED EXPERT: CINDY # of Fans/ Name Followers/ Observations GALLOP (Top Followers) Founder & CEO Subscribers IfWeRanTheWorld Nothing innovative about the Lexus page. .com Facebook Lexus 48,240 Wall includes links to news, features, and content but limited discussion. Aesthetics: 1 Messaging: 1 Links to information on new LF-Ch hybrid concept car, Twitter Lexus_LFCh 588 no retweets or conversation. “Could have done so much more YouTube Lexus 288 Commercials and product design videos. with the ‘Built by hand. Designed for the heart’ tag line. FEATURED EXPERT: TIMOTHY BRUNS Nice home page, but the eye is Executive Director of Creative | Cheil North America inexorably drawn to the box pro- Aesthetics: 3 claiming ‘Important information Messaging: 3 regarding floor mat campaign,’ “The featured car on the site—the hybrid—was incredibly which turns out to be a safety interesting experientially. As I explored I was intrigued by the interactivity advisory for potential floor mat and navigational design that reinforced the ‘Someday’ concept through- interference with the acceleration out the brand’s communications. It was fun, and the detail that went into pedal, not the number-one thing creating a model microsite with lots of interactivity was admirable. you want site visitors to be homing It was cool for cool’s sake, and I liked it. Maybe because it was unexpected? in on (or maybe the lawyers do, I Maybe because it stood out as unique in the space? Maybe because it tried don’t know). to be conceptual to the hybrid model? Maybe because it was just fun to play with and kept me there longer than any other car site? I’m not sure. But it The L Studio link took me to origi- felt fresh and new. I wish Lexus had the same experience for all its models. nal films and Web content, not quite It was like I was exploring a completely different car company. The rest of sure why and what the rationale the site had very dated design and, frankly, was ugly. was—but the link was buried at the bottom of the home page with I appreciate that each car model can have a different and unique selling no indication of what it was, leav- proposition, but it should feel like it all comes from the same brand. Or ing me to click on it out of curiosity maybe the rest of the site should have felt like this one car model experience? (I might just as easily not have). Unfortunately, I can’t give Lexus high marks because the hybrid model I was expecting more from a well- experience was somewhat buried in an ad-like promotion on the home page positioned upscale car marque.” and had I just navigated through the top-level tabs, I would have missed it.” © L2 2010 LUXURY BRANDS: lexus 121
  • 122. porsche Owner: Porsche Rank: 14 Digital IQ: 119 Classification: Gifted The German carmaker checks the requisite boxes with strong DIGITAL DASHBOARD: Overall Online Performance product display and purchase orientation on its site. With such great brand DNA, however, Porsche can do better. The evidence is no clearer than on its Facebook page, Platform Off-Platform Social Media SEO Messaging where despite minimal brand involve- ment, more than half a million fans congregate, increasing to the tune of 5,000 a month. The Boxster Spyder microsite is a treat and demonstrates what this megabrand is capable of on the Web. >> PORSCHE BOASTS THE HIGHEST PERCENTAGE OF REGULAR SITE VISITORS AMONG THE 44 BRANDS, WITH 31% OF VISITORS AND 65% OF VISITS ATTRIBUTED TO FREQUENT USERS. << © L2 2010 LUXURY BRANDS: porsche 122
  • 123. FLASH OF GENIUS FEATURED EXPERT: TIMOTHY THE “I CAN” BRUNS MOBILE CAMPAIGN Executive Director of Creative Focused on affordability, Porsche’s Cheil North America early 2009 “I Can” campaign created Aesthetics: 3 major buzz in mobile marketing circles. Messaging: 2 Porsche used behavioral targeting software to place ads on Yahoo! and “There were elements of the Weather.com’s mobile sites. Although Porsche site that started to entice mobile constituted only 10 percent me to engage with the brand, of the digital budget, it generated 22 like the full-screen video ad and percent of the traffic, with click-through interactive pull-down red strap rates six times higher that rates gener- metaphor in the Boxster Spyder ated by online display ads. feature, but I got frustrated with all the pop-up windows as I navi- FEATURED EXPERT: gated through the site. CINDY GALLOP Founder & CEO | IfWeRanTheWorld.com I enjoyed the production values Aesthetics: 2 and photography of the custom- Messaging: 2 ization tool. As I switched from “This site was hugely, hugely disappointing. one exterior color to the next I One of the most famous and desired car brands of all time does not have really felt like I could see what the sexiest, most desirable, ‘oozing product lust’ site of all time?! that color looked like in real life. This is the car brand that should be giving Apple a run for its money in It was almost hyper-real. But, the ‘I love it, I want it, now—what does it do?’ stakes. overall, very standard design and Clearly, effort had been made around the launch of the Boxster Spyder to navigational structure as well as get a bit of Porsche oomph into the site—but why not around the 911?! pretty boring content.” One of the biggest wasted opportunities I’ve seen. This brand is a popular culture gift—it has quite enough going for it on its own merits to be able to do far, far better than this in standing out from the crowd.” SPOTLIGHT ON MOBILE Mobile Score: 4 Mobile component of “I Can” campaign was highly successful Porsche Panamera iPhone application, which provides a mobile magazine of the new model, has generated decent reviews. >> PORSCHE’S TOP NON-BRAND AFFILIATED TWITTER USER, 89C4, TWEETS ABOUT HIS 1989 PORSCHE C4 AND HAS MORE THAN 2,000 FOLLOWERS. << © L2 2010 LUXURY BRANDS: porsche 123
  • 124. SEO ANALYTICS 1 2 3 4 5 Organic Keywords porsche porsche cayenne porche porsche panamera porsche usa Upstream Sites google.com yahoo.com facebook.com youtube.com google.it Downstream Sites google.com facebook.com yahoo.com youtube.com adobe.com porschedealer. Audience Also Visits com pca.org panamera.com audi.com audiusa.com SOCIAL MEDIA # of Fans/ Name Followers/ Observations (Top Followers) Subscribers Links to all models and Porsche Color Styler are highlighted Facebook Porsche 549,533 on main page; brand posts links to videos and other content on wall. Tough to tell if this one is official; all links are to Porsche- Twitter PorscheNewsWire 434 related content. Channel features technology and development films, com- YouTube Porsche 4,600 mercials, and behind-the-scenes footage. For more about your brand’s Digital IQ, CONTACT US. © L2 2010 LUXURY BRANDS: porsche 124
  • 125. cadillac Owner: General Motors Rank: 15 Digital IQ: 117 Classification: Gifted Of all the GM brands, Cadillac is the most damaged from leverag- DIGITAL DASHBOARD: Overall Online Performance ing collective digital efforts. Although the clean, purchase-orient- ed GM Web template screams com- petence, it prevents Cadillac from Platform Off-Platform Social Media SEO unleashing the full power of its brand Messaging online. Its site feels down-market and boring compared to those of its luxury peers. Cadillac thrives when it embraces its unique brand identity and engages with customers directly in its own voice via social media and search. But does a Cadillac owner really want to turn to a generic GM site for after- sales service? Interactive ads on NYT.com are a start—but one look at the innovative digital content coming from foreign luxury peers demon- strates that Cadillac really needs to step up its game. >> CADILLAC’S SITE LINKS TO UNOFFICIAL BRAND-ENTHUSIAST SITES. << © L2 2010 LUXURY BRANDS: cadillac 125
  • 126. FLASH OF GENIUS BEYOND THE BANNER AD Cadillac’s ad for the 2010 SRX provides an interactive product experience. After rolling over the ad, users can view six product images, a 360-degree product spin, and read press reviews. The ad also links to the product microsite, which has an edgier, more luxurious feel than Cadillac’s stan- dard page. The ad featured on the New York Times home page in early December 2009, is demonstrative of the brand’s efforts to move beyond flat digital advertisements. SPOTLIGHT ON MOBILE Mobile Score: 3.5 Cadillac content is included in parent GM’s news-oriented iPhone app. The brand also made an inde- pendent mobile entrée in November 2009 as the exclusive advertiser on Pandora on the new Android mobile device. Cadillac hosts a dedicated mobile site for smart-phone users. >> CADILLAC’S FACEBOOK FAN COUNT RANKED THIRD IN ABSOLUTE GROWTH FROM OCTOBER TO NOVEMBER 2009. << © L2 2010 LUXURY BRANDS: cadillac 126
  • 127. SEO ANALYTICS 1 2 3 4 5 Organic Keywords cadillac cadillac cts cadillac escalade cadillac.com cadillac srx Upstream Sites google.com yahoo.com gm.com youtube.com doubleclick.com Downstream Sites google.com yahoo.com gmautobuilder.com youtube.com gm.com gmautobuilder. gmacfinancial- Audience Also Visits com tools.com lincoln.com buick.com gmbuypower.com SOCIAL MEDIA # of Fans/ Name Followers/ Observations (Top Followers) Subscribers Cadillac frequently posts and feeds from Twitter. Facebook Cadillac 70,051 Leverages other social media content (GM blog, YouTube) through links on page. Fun lifestyle content alongside retweets from Cadillac fans and Twitter Cadillac 1,268 shoppers of competitor’s cars. YouTube Cadillac 1,443 Videos include TV commercials and some specialized content. FEATURED FEATURED EXPERT: EXPERT: CINDY GALLOP TIMOTHY Founder & CEO | IfWeRanTheWorld.com BRUNS Aesthetics: 0 Executive Director Messaging: 1 of Creative Cheil North “Um…I’m guessing that there’s a standardized GM America Web development approach going on here? Home page looks quite sleek, Aesthetics: 1 but the format is standard issue. Messaging: 1 Here the missed opportunities were buried in ‘Lifestyle and Events’— an- “The overall design features very other example, incidentally, of how many of these sites deploy marketing rich darks and blacks that have jargon raw and uncut. Do any of us actually think of our lives in terms some sex appeal and allow the car of ‘Lifestyle and Events’? Similarly, headings that actually say ‘Cadillac models to pop off the page. And, social media’ and ‘The official blog of Cadillac’ are heavy-handed in the yes, Cadillac invests in the typi- extreme. Missed opportunities for creating distinctiveness lie in the heri- cal online tool that allowed me to tage section (presidential limo, great story), the ‘future/concept’ section, configure my own choices when and the enthusiast sites—the real social media (although those ‘unofficial’ it came to features, interiors and blogs looked distinctly official to me).” exterior styles and colors. How- ever, it failed in brand experience miserably.” For more about your brand’s Digital IQ, CONTACT US. © L2 2010 LUXURY BRANDS: cadillac 127
  • 128. jaguar Owner: Tata Motors Rank: 26 Digital IQ: 93 Classification: Average Although Jaguar shows signs of digital maturity with its 2008 XF DIGITAL DASHBOARD: Overall Online Performance mobile campaign and differentiated site aesthetics, the brand’s efforts are largely locked in adolescence. Its text-heavy site lacks interactivity. Platform Off-Platform Social Media SEO The brand’s configurator takes the Messaging user on an off-site journey to nowhere, and the lone call to action is to print a customized car. Jaguar’s Facebook page has reaped a large fan follow- ing, but YouTube and Twitter efforts are in their early stages. SEO ANALYTICS 1 2 3 4 5 jaguar dealerships in Organic Keywords jaguar jaguar cars jaguar xf houston jaguar.com Upstream Sites google.com yahoo.com tagworldwide.com jaguar.ca youtube.com Downstream Sites google.com yahoo.com tagworldwide.com youtube.com facebook.com Audience Also Visits lincoln.com acura.com insideline.com motortrend.com livescore.com >> JAGUAR’S SITE INCORPORATES NEITHER COMPARISON TOOLS NOR EXTERNAL REVIEWS. << © L2 2010 LUXURY BRANDS: jaguar 128
  • 129. FLASH OF GENIUS MULTICHANNEL SPOTLIGHT ON MOBILE MOBILE CAMPAIGN Mobile Score: 4 In early summer 2009, Jaguar ran a multi- In addition to the 2009 SMS cam- channel campaign to build its SMS database paign, Jaguar’s 2008 XF cam- and drive foot traffic to dealerships. Calls to paign generated 15 million mobile action in TV, online and mobile ads encouraged Internet impressions and 85,000 consumers to text Jaguar, and returning a unique visitors to its WAP site. message with the option to find a local dealer by texting back a ZIP code. Jaguar plans to FEATURED use the database of more than 3,000 custom- EXPERT: ers in future SMS marketing campaigns. CINDY GALLOP Founder & CEO IfWeRanTheWorld SOCIAL MEDIA .com Aesthetics: 4 # of Fans/ Messaging: 3 Name Followers/ Observations (Top Followers) Subscribers “Jaguar has a visually distinctive Links to all Jaguar models; wall posts include home page. I perked up consider- Facebook Jaguar 56,305 video and news links. Limited discussion. ably when I arrived at it. Look interactivejag / Jaguar_News is no longer updated in an and feel is nice. Navigation is Twitter 334 / 703 apparent handle switch—another example of Jaguar_News Jaguar’s hesitation. standard. But those videos of talk- ing heads going on about various U.K. site has brand videos and promotes YouTube Jaguar Channel 394 brand philanthropy campaign. aspects of Jaguar’s design—guys, you’re talking to yourselves.” FEATURED EXPERT: TIMOTHY BRUNS Executive Director of Creative | Cheil North America Aesthetics: 1 Messaging: 1 “When the site opened, my first response was, ‘Sexy!’ But that is where it stopped. I am surprised that a brand that stands for seductive, stimulating, emotional engineering has a site does nothing sensorially to compel me to stay. All of the content is heavy on copy, light on experience. In fact, there is no experience except for a navigational element labeled, ‘experience.’ Once you go there, it is nothing but flat content. I do appreciate the attempt in this section to pull in lifestyle content relevant to the Jaguar driver, but experientially, it is a complete let down. There is no use of video or other sensorial elements that allow me to embrace this brand or this driving experience.” >> JAGUAR’S YOUTUBE CHANNEL FEATURES ITS CAMPAIGN TO SUPPORT THE CHARITY NATIONAL SOCIETY FOR PREVENTION OF CRUELTY TO CHILDREN, WHICH WORKS TO PREVENT CHILD ABUSE. << © L2 2010 LUXURY BRANDS: jaguar 129
  • 130. land rover Owner: Tata Motors Rank: 27 Digital IQ: 92 Classification: Average Land Rover’s strong site aesthet- ics and functional purchase-orien- DIGITAL DASHBOARD: Overall Online Performance tation tally above-average platform IQ points, but cost constraints from parent Tata have hindered radical digital innovation. Platform Off-Platform Social Media SEO This hesitancy to commit is reflected Messaging in social media. Wallflower Land Rover stays out of the conversation, preferring a hashtag campaign to a robust corpo- rate Twitter account and avoiding Facebook and YouTube altogether. The brand maintains a rich mo- bile heritage on the heels of investment by former parent Ford and recently committed to sponsor the Sports Illustrated app for iPhone and Blackberry. SEO ANALYTICS 1 2 3 4 5 Organic Keywords land rover range rover range rover sport landrover dealers land rover 21075 Upstream Sites landrover.com google.com yahoo.com facebook.com cars.com designyourlandrover. Downstream Sites google.com landrover.com yahoo.com facebook.com com Audience Also Visits landrover.com toyota.com nissanusa.com jeep.com edmunds.com >> AN INDEPENDENT BRITISH BLOG, LANDYZONE.CO.UK, MAINTAINS A TWITTER ACCOUNT WITH MORE THAN 2,000 FOLLOWERS. << © L2 2010 LUXURY BRANDS: land rover 130
  • 131. FLASH OF GENIUS DEALER AND PROMOTIONAL FEATURED EXPERT: HASHTAG CAMPAIGN CINDY GALLOP With the launch of its dealer and promo- Founder & CEO tional hashtag campaign in April 2009 IfWeRanTheWorld .com in conjunction with the New York Auto Show, Land Rover experimented with Aesthetics: 2 Messaging: 2 a new way to enter the social media conversation. “A lot of good stuff here, but you The brand incorporated hashtags into traditional marketing media, including have to dig for it because it’s billboards and taxi advertisements, employed a viral blogger and launched buried within a pretty standard pay-per-tweet ads. Land Rover’s twitter hits were estimated at 300,000. template and navigation system. This is a brand that could be SOCIAL MEDIA making so much more of its con- siderable credentials in the way # of Fans/ Name Followers/ Observations it presents online—from its envi- (Top Followers) Subscribers ronmental responsibility through No official page; some fan-generated its rugged, outdoorsy values to its Facebook No Brand Page N/A content but Land Rover is largely out of the conversation. highly sophisticated modern-day Twitter landrovernews 801 Tweets include news and PR content. applicability (I was fascinated by the ‘Armoured Range Rover No U.S. channel; some dealer, enthusiast YouTube No Brand Channel N/A presence and a vibrant Brazilian channel. Sales’ section).” FEATURED EXPERT: SPOTLIGHT ON MOBILE Mobile Score: 3.5 TIMOTHY BRUNS Executive Director of Creative | Cheil North America Land Rover bought in early to Aesthetics: 3 iPhone advertising hype and Messaging: 3 ran mobile campaigns on the “Though the site experience wasn’t that breakthrough, phone starting in 2007 and sup- I liked how they treated the navigational system for each model: giving ported a high-end interactive the user intuitive ways to explore each car, whether through beautifully WAP site. shot and cropped images or video experiences. Recent mobile efforts include an ad campaign with Admob on The visual design is clean and friendly. This overcompensates for the lack demographically targeted mobile of brand story, and the small design and interactive elements were also sites. Flash elements do not load nicely done. Did it encompass its brand values of durable, tough, powerful on a PDA and U.S. mobile site and adventurous? No. But it does have a nice design.” has disappeared. >> EVEN THOUGH THE BRAND DOES NOT MAINTAIN A FACEBOOK PAGE, THE SOCIAL NETWORKING SITE IS A SIGNIFICANT SOURCE OF LAND ROVER’S UPSTREAM AND DOWNSTREAM TRAFFIC. << © L2 2010 LUXURY BRANDS: land rover 131
  • 132. tesla Owner: Tesla Rank: 41 Digital IQ: 55 Classification: Feeble Perhaps it’s unfair to measure the marketing efforts of electric DIGITAL DASHBOARD: Overall Online Performance start-up Tesla against the world’s biggest advertising budgets. But if this Silicon Valley firm is going to reinvent the auto industry, it will need to focus on digital brand-building. Platform Off-Platform Social Media SEO Messaging Tesla’s site is as focused on educat- ing and attracting investors as it is on direct consumer engagement. It lacks a product focus and chooses wordy rather than visual explanations to highlight innovative design and technology features. For a brand that relies on word- of-mouth advertising and celebrity owners to build buzz, its social media efforts are off to a good start. >> TESLA’S SITE GENERATES MORE TRAFFIC THAN HUMMER’S AND LAND ROVER’S COMBINED. << © L2 2010 LUXURY BRANDS: tesla 132
  • 133. FLASH OF GENIUS REINVENTING THE DEALER CHANNEL? With fewer than 1,000 roadsters on the streets and only 13 dealerships across the U.S. and Europe, Tesla is in a unique position to develop a syn- chronous online channel. Although the brand doesn’t go as far as fellow inventory constrained Smart, which books paid reservations through its site, it does capture direct sales leads. Perhaps eBay isn’t the only platform that can sell cars on the Web? SEO ANALYTICS 1 2 3 4 5 Organic Keywords tesla tesla motors electric cars tesla model s tesla roadster Upstream Sites google.com yahoo.com youtube.com wikipedia.org facebook.com Downstream Sites google.com youtube.com facebook.com taleo.net yahoo.com SOCIAL MEDIA # of Fans/ Name Followers/ Observations (Top Followers) Subscribers Page includes wall and media content and Tesla communi- Facebook Tesla Roadster 6,433 cates daily and links to blog content. Unsure if branded, but account has more than 500 followers Twitter tesla_motors 555 without a single tweet. YouTube Tesla Motors 23 Only seven videos and no uploads in more than a year. >> TESLA DOES NOT ENGAGE IN PAID SEARCH. << © L2 2010 LUXURY BRANDS: tesla 133
  • 134. FEATURED EXPERT: FEATURED EXPERT: TIMOTHY BRUNS CINDY Executive Director of Creative | Cheil North America GALLOP Aesthetics: 0 Founder & CEO Messaging: 1 IfWeRanTheWorld .com “Truthfully, I had not even heard of Tesla until I saw a TV ad demon- Aesthetics: 2 Messaging: 2 strating that it was all-electric, which piqued my interest as well as my excitement to visit the site. But I was let down by the experience or lack “The site for the newest entrant thereof. into the car market is super disap- This site uses the traditional tab system that was introduced in the begin- pointing, because they’ve simply ning of Web design when we were still on dial-up modems, so users would adopted the Web template/formula understand the behavior and what the metaphor was meant to do, which wholesale. For a car brand with was like a file-folder system. And it was low in k size weight, which the backing of some of the most meant faster downloads. After users became familiar with this type of in- prominent figures in Silicon Val- terface, and we reached an era of high-speed connections and richer Web ley (although its well-publicized experiences, Web designers began to push the metaphor design and offer troubles may have caused a bit of unique navigational elements relevant to that particular brand. Some drop-off there), and with revo- brands were even known and recognized for their dynamic and iconic lutionary intentions, this brand buttons, bells, and whistles. above all others should have epito- mized the future in its presence Obviously, not Tesla. This site looks like it is stuck in the early ’90s. They online. did graduate to roll-over functionality in their exterior color choice tool, which gave me an ounce of hope. But when the experience stopped there, It’s completely standard issue in I was gone.” every respect.” SPOTLIGHT ON MOBILE Mobile Score: 1 Free product placement in a Blackberry ad scores Tesla a sympathy point. For more about your brand’s Digital IQ, CONTACT US. © L2 2010 LUXURY BRANDS: tesla 134
  • 135. lotus Owner: Lotus Rank: 43 Digital IQ: 43 Classification: Feeble Evidence of the brand’s potential on the Web comes in the form of DIGITAL DASHBOARD: Overall Online Performance a questionably Lotus-affiliated Facebook fan page. Although the page hasn’t been updated since November 2008, its fan base grew 13 percent in November 2009, sug- Platform Off-Platform Social Media SEO Messaging gesting Lotus aficionados are online. Why is the brand ignoring them? Lotus’s dated, text-heavy, and haphazard site is its lone digital footprint as the brand is absent everywhere else. The site lacks basic commerce functionality (it indicates that finance and credit content will launch in 2009), and customer service is paltry, with few contact options. >> IT TAKES THREE CLICKS TO LOCATE A LOTUS DEALERSHIP FROM EACH MODEL DISPLAY PAGE. << © L2 2010 LUXURY BRANDS: lotus 135
  • 136. FLASH OF GENIUS DOES THE EVORA MICROSITE COUNT? Lotus’s digital brainpower is lim- ited, and its most innovative efforts are average at best. The brand’s 2010 Evora model microsite moves beyond text-heavy charts and visually highlights vehicle features, such as seating and steering. Although gallery photos are small and video content poor, the user can listen to the roar of the legendary Lotus engine. SPOTLIGHT ON MOBILE Mobile Score: 1 The Lotus site loads on a smart-phone. >> APPROXIMATELY 6% OF USERS NAVIGATE TO YOUTUBE DIRECTLY FROM THE BRANDED SITE EVEN THOUGH LOTUS DOES NOT HAVE A CHANNEL. << © L2 2010 LUXURY BRANDS: lotus 136
  • 137. SEO ANALYTICS 1 2 3 4 5 Organic Keywords lotus lotus cars lotus elise lotus car lotus cars usa Upstream Sites google.com facebook.com grouplotus.com yahoo.com google.ca Downstream Sites google.com facebook.com grouplotus.com yahoo.com google.ca SOCIAL MEDIA # of Fans/ Name Followers/ Observations (Top Followers) Subscribers Unsure if this is an official brand page. Very limited activity Facebook Lotus N/A and last post was November 2008. Lotus Cars Twitter handle does not appear to be affiliated with Twitter No Brand Account N/A brand but could be. Only 21 tweets, last was in October 2009. YouTube No Brand Channel N/A No channel, limited video content. FEATURED EXPERT: FEATURED EXPERT: TIMOTHY BRUNS CINDY GALLOP Executive Director of Creative Founder & CEO Cheil North America IfWeRanTheWorld.com Aesthetics: 1 Aesthetics: 3 Messaging: 1 Messaging: 2 “Lotus has an opportunity to break convention and “Another brand where I had high expectations, deliver a disruptive experience that screams out their and another brand where I was disappointed. brand story. Their unique design and competitive Poor video content. Missed opportunities; the Lotus quality warrants the same experience online. But we brand heritage and the Lotus Performance Driving get a standard site design with standard navigational School. Particularly because eight pages of small, structure and no experience whatsoever. closely spaced type interspersed with the odd photo is They are lucky the cars sell themselves, because the not the way to display and impress with your site has me in park.” company’s heritage.” For more about your brand’s Digital IQ, CONTACT US. © L2 2010 LUXURY BRANDS: lotus 137
  • 138. ULTRA-LUXURY Price Point Overall Off-Platform Social Brand Parent Digital IQ IQ Group Platform SEO Rank Rank Messaging Media Ferrari Fiat 1 8 128 Gifted 5 3 5 2 Bentley Volkswagen 2 35 72 Challenged 4 1 1 2 Aston Aston Martin 3 38 66 Feeble 1 2 2 2 Martin Maserati Fiat 4 39 65 Feeble 2 3 2 1 Rolls-Royce BMW 5 40 63 Feeble 4 1 1 1 Lamborghini Volkswagen 6 44 31 Feeble 1 1 1 1 Category Average 2.8 1.8 2.0 1.5 With Ferrari as a notable exception, the ultra-luxury category was an overwhelming disappointment. The in-person purchase process at this price point is high-touch and sensual, with attention to design, craftsmanship, materials, and customization. Unfortunately, the e-commerce experience does little to mirror this online. The category largely ignores digital advertising and social media, allowing big, unofficial communities to emerge. Huge followings and massive buzz demonstrate the vast potential for ultra-luxury marques to capitalize on strong brand equity by entering the conversation. Ferrari, with its excellent site and social media efforts, shows how ultra- luxury brands can maintain an exclusive mantle while harnessing and monetizing the enthusiasm of online followers. © L2 2010 ULTRA-LUXURY BRANDS 138
  • 139. ferrari Owner: Fiat S.p.A. Rank: 8 Digital IQ: 128 Classification: Gifted Delivering a highly interactive brand experience on multiple DIGITAL DASHBOARD: Overall Online Performance online channels, this Italian automaker finishes laps ahead of its digitally challenged ultra- luxury peers. Its site deftly balances aspirational multimedia content with Platform Off-Platform Social Media SEO Messaging purchase-oriented, informative product display. Site visitors can virtually test drive a customized Ferrari on the legendary Mugello circuit (sadly for PC users only). Discussion forums, virtual factory tours and a top-notch accessories store further cater to the automaker’s large community of online enthusiasts. Wildly successful with social media, Ferrari tops all brands in Facebook fans and YouTube subscribers. >> FERRARI’S “ON-BOARD WITH MICHAEL SCHUMACHER” VIDEO HAS RECEIVED MORE THAN 1 MILLION VIEWS ON ITS YOUTUBE CHANNEL. << © L2 2010 ULTRA-LUXURY BRANDS: ferrari 139
  • 140. FLASH OF GENIUS DRAWING REVENUE FROM ENTHUSIASTS Ferrari is finding ways to generate revenue from its enor- mous community of online fans. The fee for the Scuderia Ferrari Community’s premium content is 40 euros annual- ly. That buys access to videos, media downloads, forums and event invitations. At $1.99, the highly-rated “Ferrari Sound” iPhone app includes the 458 Italia engine sound, ringtones, wallpa- per and videos. The Ferrari e-commerce site has a wide range of merchandise, from surfboards to watches and dedicated customer service to please fans hungry for Ferrari-branded merchandise. SPOTLIGHT ON MOBILE Mobile Score: 3 The brand’s “Ferrari Sound” iPhone app has received great reviews for the authentic engine rev. At $1.99, it’s the only branded car app that wasn’t free. In addition to brand efforts, more than 15 independent ap- plications exist around the brand and its racing team. >> THE MY_FERRARI TWITTER HANDLE FROM A SALT LAKE CITY-BASED MAN RAISING MONEY TO PURCHASE A FERRARI HAS ATTRACTED MORE THAN 5,000 FOLLOWERS. << © L2 2010 ULTRA-LUXURY BRANDS: ferrari 140
  • 141. SEO ANALYTICS 1 2 3 4 5 ferrari 458 italia Organic Keywords ferrari ferrari 458 italia ferrari clothing ferrari.com configurator Upstream Sites ferrari.com google.com facebook.com yahoo.com youtube.com ferrariapproved. Downstream Sites google.com facebook.com yahoo.com youtube.com com bentleymotors. caranddriver. internetautoguide. Audience Also Visits com gm.com com insideline.com com SOCIAL MEDIA # of Fans/ Name Followers/ Observations (Top Followers) Subscribers #1 in Facebook fan count; brand posts racing news, video Facebook ferrari 677,325 footage and photos. Twitter ferrariusa 120 Last tweet dates back to August 2009; following reflects that. Channel scores points for strong branding and YouTube ferrariworld 12,306 subscriber base. FEATURED EXPERT: FEATURED EXPERT: TIMOTHY BRUNS CINDY Executive Director of Creative | Cheil North America GALLOP Aesthetics: 2 Founder & CEO Messaging: 2 IfWeRanTheWorld .com “I applaud Ferrari for tapping into the driver’s passion by offering a Aesthetics: 1 Messaging: 1 brand experience that kept me engaged and interacting with the site longer than any in the category. Why? Because Ferrari went beyond just “You arrive at a vibrant home- offering me information about their brand. They allowed me to feel the page dominated by Ferrari red. brand. And I left understanding and believing in their brand promise of My expectations were running beauty, speed, and performance. high—I expected and seriously The way they offered customization of the automobile felt true to its wanted cutting edge. sports car nature and was visually and intuitively engaging. Also, when This should be the Ferrari of Web I took a test drive, I actually felt like I was in the driver’s seat. It was the sites. It’s not. The virtual tour is next best thing to actually driving one. And it enticed me to desire one good. The virtual race is good. and possibly go and experience it for real. But when you’re FERRARI….” For more about your brand’s Digital IQ, CONTACT US. © L2 2010 ULTRA-LUXURY BRANDS: ferrari 141
  • 142. bentley Owner: Volkswagen Group Rank: 35 Digital IQ: 72 Classification: Challenged Bentley’s beautiful imagery and elegantly designed site are digital DIGITAL DASHBOARD: Overall Online Performance highlights. The brand has no short- age of fans online and should take a lesson from its more adept siblings, Volkswagen and Audi, and move beyond brochure-ware. Bentley is Platform Off-Platform Social Media SEO Messaging absent on social media platforms, forcing enthusiasts to embrace unof- ficial communities. Although the brand has yet to make major moves into digital advertising or mobile, we’d welcome Bentley’s stunning photo- graphs in our browser display and iPhone anytime. >> THE BENTLEY CONFIGURATOR IS NOT COMPATIBLE WITH FIREFOX. << © L2 2010 ULTRA-LUXURY BRANDS: bentley 142
  • 143. FLASH OF GENIUS BEST-IN-CLASS PHOTOGRAPHY Bentley’s use of photography— imagery, editing, and quality—is arguably the most visually stunning of all the brands reviewed. Large product images allow Web browsers to showcase every line, contour, and detail of each model from several exterior and interior angles, providing as close to an in-person product experience as a site can offer. Beautifully staged photographs complement the cars’ impeccable design. SPOTLIGHT ON MOBILE Mobile Score: 1 The brand lacks mobile applica- tions or mobile-integrated cam- paigns, although site is compat- ible with a smart phone. >> BENTLEY DEALERSHIPS MAINTAIN A CONSISTENT SITE TEMPLATE. << © L2 2010 ULTRA-LUXURY BRANDS: bentley 143
  • 144. SEO ANALYTICS 1 2 3 4 5 Organic Keywords bentley bentley cars bently bentley continental gt bentleycars.com Upstream Sites google.com yahoo.com wikipedia.org bentleyconfigurator.com facebook.com Downstream Sites google.com bentleyconfigurator.com facebook.com yahoo.com youtube.com Audience Also Visits ferrari.com pickyourshoes.com gucci.com nike.com nydailynews.com SOCIAL MEDIA # of Fans/ Name Followers/ Observations (Top Followers) Subscribers No official page; unofficial page has limited content and user Facebook No Brand Page N/A participation, and just under 3,000 followers. Limited brand presence. British Bentley Car Hire account Twitter No Brand Account N/A boasts more than 1,000 followers. Brand is absent from the platform. Disappointing because its YouTube No Brand Channel N/A site videos are a visual delight. FEATURED EXPERT: FEATURED EXPERT: TIMOTHY BRUNS CINDY GALLOP Executive Director of Creative Founder & CEO Cheil North America IfWeRanTheWorld.com Aesthetics: 0 Aesthetics: 3 Messaging: 0 Messaging: 3 “Sophisticated looking site. Nothing too extreme, “Pretty standard, but well executed, with beautiful but I felt it could feel/act even more prestigious given photography. Could be summed up by how they the reputation of the brand. I am not sure that if I characterize the Bentley experience—‘You’re struck, navigated through this site without seeing the logo first of all, by the quiet.’ Possibly too much so. I would feel it is Bentley. Very basic Web design. The Charity Art Auction film was very slow with no The site has great use of beautifully executed photog- soundtrack. The Continental microsite was nice— raphy in the detailed sections of car models as well as visualization capability good. Also good on the ‘con- a nice, clean, and elegant car configurator tool. tact’ front—you can opt to call or to be called back.” Messaging left a lot to be desired, I felt it could have more attitude and leverage its brand heritage more. I would have loved it if it had the same attitude as their print advertising.” For more about your brand’s Digital IQ, CONTACT US. © L2 2010 ULTRA-LUXURY BRANDS: bentley 144
  • 145. aston martin Owner: Aston Martin Rank: 38 Digital IQ: 66 Classification: Feeble Like many of its ultra-luxury peers, Aston Martin takes a do- DIGITAL DASHBOARD: Overall Online Performance little-poorly approach to digital. Its site is slow to load, difficult to navigate, and fails on basic product display. Microsites, including one-77.com and the DBS site, do a Platform Off-Platform Social Media SEO Messaging better job but are divorced from the site experience. With more than 200,000 fans, its Facebook presence is evidence of a captive online audience, but Aston Martin has yet to converse with its base. SPOTLIGHT ON MOBILE Mobile Score: 1 Aston Martin’s site loads on a PDA but the brand does not have a dedicated mobile inter- face. A 2005 collaboration with Nokia shows awareness of the platform, but recent U.S. market- ing efforts have largely ignored the medium. >> THE DBS MICROSITE FEATURES VIDEOS THAT CAN BE DOWNLOADED TO AN IPOD. << © L2 2010 ULTRA-LUXURY BRANDS: aston martin 145
  • 146. FLASH OF GENIUS CONFIGURING CONFUSION? Sometimes there just is not brilliance to recognize. Given Aston Martin’s emphasis on customized cars and experience, the site configurator is unforgivable. Time-consuming to set up and unimpressive to experience, the tool requires a special plug-in with a 10-minute download. Once installed, the configurator offers a small, low- quality product image and bare- bones functionality. Furthermore, without electronic capture of the customized auto, neither the brand nor the user acquires potential sales information. The user’s only option is to download and print the custom- ized specs. And because it is only compatible with Internet Explorer and Safari, Aston Martin’s configurator excludes the 20 to 30 percent of Web users on other browsers from the build-your- own experience. >> DESPITE LIMITED CONTENT UPDATES, ASTON MARTIN RANKED 13TH IN ABSOLUTE FAN GROWTH ON FACEBOOK FROM OCTOBER TO NOVEMBER 2009. << © L2 2010 ULTRA-LUXURY BRANDS: aston martin 146
  • 147. SEO ANALYTICS 1 2 3 4 5 aston martin Organic Keywords aston martin aston martin vantage vanquish aston martin dbs ashton martin Upstream Sites google.com one-77.com facebook.com yahoo.com youtube.com astonmartinracing. Downstream Sites google.com one-77.com youtube.com com facebook.com SOCIAL MEDIA # of Fans/ Name Followers/ Observations (Top Followers) Subscribers Brand participation is limited to media postings and links to Facebook Aston Martin 210,056 racing news. Although user conversation is vibrant, brand does not appear to participate. Twitter community focuses on racing team rather than Twitter No Brand Account N/A consumer brand. Given referral traffic to brand site from YouTube, lack of YouTube No Brand Channel N/A channel is a missed opportunity. FEATURED EXPERT: FEATURED EXPERT: CINDY GALLOP Founder & CEO | IfWeRanTheWorld.com TIMOTHY Aesthetics: 0 BRUNS Executive Director Messaging: 1 of Creative “I was looking forward to this site, because I freely Cheil North admit I’m biased. If I had the money, I would buy myself an Aston Martin America Aesthetics: 1 (ideally a DBS Volante). So, the disappointment was even greater. Messaging: 1 This is a shockingly bad site for one of the ultimate luxury car brands. “For a car brand that prides itself It’s completely uninspiring, the home page is dreadful, the photos are on distinctive values, this site hits awkwardly posed, and—worst of all—this is one of the most badly written rock bottom. It is not even nicely sites I have ever encountered for a brand. The section on ‘Company designed. There is zero interactiv- History’ is not only appallingly written, but carries TYPOS. On the site ity and the brand makes no at- for a hugely expensive, luxury car marque! tempt to engage the user by way of This entire site represents a huge wasted opportunity. The brand has a storytelling. There are no consis- fantastic heritage: James Bond’s original car choice. And, um, just looking tent brand values carried through vaguely like, you know, you really are a fantastically expensive, super- on this experience. In fact, it is not duper, luxury car brand. Someone at Aston Martin should be thoroughly an experience at all. It is merely a ashamed of themselves.” printed brochure online.” For more about your brand’s Digital IQ, CONTACT US. © L2 2010 ULTRA-LUXURY BRANDS: aston martin 147
  • 148. maserati Owner: Fiat S.p.A. Rank: 39 Digital IQ: 65 Classification: Feeble Low traffic, limited site content, and poor aesthetics place this DIGITAL DASHBOARD: Overall Online Performance ultra-luxury brand in the feeble category. However, the brand is not as Web-oblivious as some of its similarly positioned peers. Platform Off-Platform Social Media SEO The automaker incorporates great Messaging user-generated commentary in the “What You Said” section of its site, but the remarks are buried deep and are difficult to find. Similar strides in the “Passion” section offer owner, club, and heritage information; how- ever, great content is overshadowed by poor presentation and technology integration. SPOTLIGHT ON MOBILE Mobile Score: 2 In conjunction with a 2007 campaign, Maserati experimented with sending mobile video content to potential customers. >> MASERATI IS ONE OF THE FEW AUTO BRANDS TO INCORPORATE ON ITS FACEBOOK PAGE LINKS AND PROMOTIONS TIED TO ITS ACCESSORIES STORE. << © L2 2010 ULTRA-LUXURY BRANDS: maserati 148
  • 149. FLASH OF GENIUS DESIGN DRIVEN GARAGE CONTEST Maserati partnered with Architectural Digest to challenge users to design the best garage. Users uploaded photo entries of existing and conceptual dream garages and winners were selected by online voting. At its height this July, the contest site was receiving nearly as many unique visitors as Maserati’s U.S. domain. >> MASERATIDEALERS.COM, A TOP UPSTREAM AND DOWNSTREAM REFERRAL SITE, REDIRECTS USERS TO THE GLOBAL BRAND SITE. << © L2 2010 ULTRA-LUXURY BRANDS: maserati 149
  • 150. SEO ANALYTICS 1 2 3 4 5 design your own maserati gran Organic Keywords maserati maserati usa maserati a6g 2000 manual cabrio price maseratigrancab- maseratidealers. Upstream Sites google.com yahoo.com facebook.com rio.com com maseratigran Downstream Sites google.com facebook.com maseratidealers.com youtube.com cabrio.com SOCIAL MEDIA # of Fans/ Name Followers/ Observations (Top Followers) Subscribers Page features link to Maserati store. Wall also includes Facebook Maserati 52,895 promotion codes for store discounts. The Gran Cabrio configurator is featured. Twitter No Brand Account N/A Very few Twitter accounts feature Maserati brand name. YouTube Maserati Channel 330 Commercials, lifestyle content, and racing videos. FEATURED EXPERT: FEATURED EXPERT: TIMOTHY BRUNS CINDY GALLOP Executive Director of Creative Founder & CEO Cheil North America IfWeRanTheWorld.com Aesthetics: 0 Aesthetics: 3 Messaging: 0 Messaging: 3 “WOW! Wow. wow. Embarrassing for Maserati— “A disappointment, again due to high expectations known for its Italian heritage, its racing personality set by perception of brand. Navigation is awkward. and its performance—to deliver what looks like an ‘Web special’ took me to the car. (More jargon, by the American-made car company site. It actually looks way. ‘Web Special’ is meaningless to the customer.) like a corporate site for an insurance company. ‘Experience more’ meant a pop-up menu. Within that, Maserati has tried to build experiential components So disappointed. Make it big and make it loud. This is into their site like the ‘Feel every sound’ section, for truly an awful site and consumer experience.” example, but hasn’t executed them creatively enough.” For more about your brand’s Digital IQ, CONTACT US. © L2 2010 ULTRA-LUXURY BRANDS: maserati 150
  • 151. rolls-royce Owner: BMW AG Rank: 40 Digital IQ: 63 Classification: Feeble Like its renowned cars, Rolls- Royce’s site scores top style DIGITAL DASHBOARD: Overall Online Performance points. But opulent Web brochure- ware will only take the brand so far, and when it comes to engaging users and developing e-commerce capa- bilities, the brand falls flat. Although Platform Off-Platform Social Media SEO Messaging customization is part of every Rolls- Royce purchase, the brand is one of only three sites without a configurator. The brand is absent from social me- dia and does not appear to engage in paid search. SPOTLIGHT ON MOBILE Mobile Score: 2 Traditional site loads on a mobile device and brand has a dedi- cated mobile site for European phones. >> IT TAKES SIX CLICKS TO DRILL DOWN TO SPECIFIC DEALER INFORMATION ON THE ROLLS-ROYCE SITE. << © L2 2010 ULTRA-LUXURY BRANDS: rolls-royce 151
  • 152. FLASH OF GENIUS SITE AESTHETICS Our Brand Translation experts said it all: the site is gorgeous. >> TRAFFIC TO THE ROLLS-ROYCE SITE HAS INCREASED 81% ANNUALLY. << © L2 2010 ULTRA-LUXURY BRANDS: rolls-royce 152
  • 153. SEO ANALYTICS 1 2 3 4 5 Organic Keywords rolls royce rolls royce phantom rolls royce cars rolls royce ghost rolls-royce Upstream Sites google.com rolls-royce.com facebook.com yahoo.com wikipedia.org bentleymotors. Downstream Sites google.com wikipedia.org youtube.com com facebook.com SOCIAL MEDIA # of Fans/ Name Followers/ Observations (Top Followers) Subscribers Page (if brand-affiliated) has no posts, very limited photos, Facebook No Brand Page N/A and extremely limited content. Although some imitation accounts have stolen the brand logo, Twitter No Brand Account N/A none has a significant following. YouTube No Brand Channel N/A Several imitation channels. FEATURED EXPERT: FEATURED EXPERT: TIMOTHY BRUNS CINDY GALLOP Executive Director of Creative Founder & CEO Cheil North America IfWeRanTheWorld.com Aesthetics: 5 Aesthetics: 5 Messaging: 3 Messaging: 3 “This was one of the prettiest, most sophisticated car “High marks to Rolls-Royce for a classic, not particu- sites I have experienced in the luxury car space. The larly future-forward site that is nevertheless simple, design is so clean and elegant. I think it is easier to clean, features beautiful films, reinforces the brand’s create a cleaner look when you only have a few mod- position in the marketplace and popular perceptions els to showcase. I particularly loved the use of sub- thereof, does the product justice in its presentation, level ‘accordion’ interactivity with the features and and radiates class. options all contained within the same space. Beautifully understated, nicely done.” This site captures the ultra-luxury and royalty essence of the brand. Was it the most immersive experience? No. But it lived up to its reputation in design and detail.” For more about your brand’s Digital IQ, CONTACT US. © L2 2010 ULTRA-LUXURY BRANDS: rolls-royce 153
  • 154. lamborghini Owner: Volkswagen Group Rank: 44 Digital IQ: 31 Classification: Feeble What is there to say about the brand that comes in dead last? DIGITAL DASHBOARD: Overall Online Performance Not much, except there is nowhere to go but up. Although small glimmers of digital competence can be teased- out from its haphazard site and unof- ficial social media buzz, this Italian Platform Off-Platform Social Media SEO Messaging brand’s efforts to date are nothing short of disaster. It takes five mouse clicks to even see a vehicle and an- other seven to locate a dealership. Only one of the U.S. dealerships has a link from the parent site. Given Lamborghini’s enormous brand equity, will it rise to the occasion online? SEO ANALYTICS 1 2 3 4 5 Organic Keywords lamborghini lamborghini.com lamborghini gallardo create a custom ride lamborghini x concept Upstream Sites google.com adobe.com ferrariworld.com youtube.com visit-lamborghini.com Downstream Sites google.com youtube.com visit-lamborghini.com adobe.com ferrariworld.com Audience Also Visits suzuki.com kia.com nissanusa.com subaru.com hyundaiusa.com >> THE UNOFFICIAL LAMBORGHINI FACEBOOK GROUP HAS MORE THAN 250,000 FANS. << © L2 2010 ULTRA-LUXURY BRANDS: lamborghini 154
  • 155. FLASH OF GENIUS LANDING PAGE As both our experts attest, Lamborghini’s entry page is a compelling hook, hitting users in the face upon entry with the challenge, “Ready to ride?” and an image of a cowboy riding a bucking bull. The excitement and anticipation generated by the page is the perfect portal to an ab- sorbing brand experience—if the site could only deliver on its promise. SPOTLIGHT ON MOBILE Mobile Score: 1 SOCIAL MEDIA Lamborghini’s mobile efforts are limited to its release of a co- # of Fans/ branded phone Name Followers/ Observations (Top Followers) with Tag Heuer. Subscribers Site is not PDA Large unofficial communities but nothing Facebook No Brand Page N/A from the brand. compatible. LamborghiniClub unaffiliated account is Twitter No Brand Account N/A maintained by the Lamborghini Club of Los Angeles and has more than 1,000 fans. YouTube No Brand N/A Several unofficial and imitation channels. FEATURED EXPERT: FEATURED EXPERT: TIMOTHY BRUNS CINDY GALLOP Executive Director of Creative Founder & CEO Cheil North America IfWeRanTheWorld.com Aesthetics: 1 Aesthetics: 3 Messaging: 1 Messaging: 2 “Damn, when I was first greeted on the home page “On first arrival at the home page, this site looked with a visual of a bull rider and an invitation that very promising, in line with expectations. Nice styl- read, “Ready to ride?” my blood started pumping as I ing and statements—the ‘Ready to ride?’ entry point clicked, “YES.” And then when it asked me if I wanted was nice, the ‘Every weapon needs a master’ line was to view in full screen, I thought I was in for the ride of nice—but navigation proved to be extremely clunky, my life. What a disappointment! Don’t do that to me with way too much clicking required to get anywhere and then offer me nothing. and back again, and links that didn’t seem to go any- where. Surprisingly low on effective use of images or There were no compelling elements whatsoever. No video for a brand that absolutely demands them.” video. No interactivity. No experience. Which would have at least been okay (not acceptable, but okay) if you hadn’t enticed me in the beginning with a call to For more about your brand’s action like that. Bad Italians!” Digital IQ, CONTACT US. © L2 2010 ULTRA-LUXURY BRANDS: lamborghini 155
  • 156. Contact: WEB: L2thinktank.com PHONE: 212.998.0508 INFO: info@L2thinktank.com PRESS: press@L2thinktank.com 156