L U X U rY As i m m e r s i V e stO rY t e L L i n G L a u n c h i n g a L u x u ry b r a n d i n t h e d i g i ta L a g eAPG AwArds mAtt sPrinGAte2011 t h e b r o o k y l n b r ot h e r s
S U M M A RYthis paper is about re-thinking luxur y and the art of narrative for a two-way world.It’s about understanding that in this new world, the word ‘audience’is outdated and ‘participant’ is a better guide.We wanted to give participants an experience they could transform into t h e i ro w n a n d u s e t h e I n t e r n e t ’s n a t u r a l s t r e n g t h a s a ‘ d e e p m e d i a ’ c h a n n e l tocreate content that wasn’t just entertaining, but immersive.We learnt from films and t V shows that have created new forms of narrative and we combinedtechnology with storytelling (and a cast of characters) to redefine what’s expected of luxury brands.In so doing, we transformed the behaviour of a traditional car company into a modern media brand.by letting people into the brand story, we as planners, had to find a new role and rhythm toour work, acting more like magazine editors than traditional communication planners.this new way of behaving inspired new actions; we invented thingsfor people to do rather than just advertising ideas.
INTRODUCTIONback in Februar y 2010 we were briefed to create a long-termglobal launch strategy for the new range rover evoque.this new car is range rover ’s design answer tothe modern world; it will be the smallest, lightestand most efficient range rover ever built.the car has been inspired by the city; the designers at rangerover drew from architecture, design and technology to createa new kind of range rover, a car built for a new audience.
NEW CHAPTER, FRESH THINKINGrange rover is a luxur y brand with a rich heritage.A brand that is classic, refined and enduring.range rover cars are expensive and exclusive, and out of reach for most people.but, the range rover evoque marks the moment when range rover canopen its arms to a whole new group of buyers and invite them in.
THE AUDIENCE CHALLENGEWe had to connect with a younger, urban, design inspired andconnected group that had traditionally rejected the brand.A new, progressive mainstream.We needed to reach out and engage people living in world cities 1 .1. e.g. london, new york, sao Paulo, berlin and shanghai.
OBJECTIVESWe were asked to create a global Pr & Marketingcampaign that would run over a period of 16 monthsbefore the car goes on sale in key markets. thecampaign had three key objectives:1. build anticipation for the new range rover evoque.2. Connect range rover with a new audience.3. Drive pre-orders of the car.
REFRAMING THE CHALLENGEAfter the client briefing we did what all conscientious planners do.We immersed ourselves in their business, read all their latest consumer research,we spent hours with partner agencies that had lived with the range rover brand foryears and understood what it meant across different geographies and cultures.We challenged, we asked questions, we debated, we argued.We did all of this to answer the most important question:What was the real problem?We knew from research that a younger, more urban audiencewouldn’t consider buying a range rover 2 .but we instinctively knew that this brief was bigger than an audience challenge,however meaty that was.It was more than just connecting the brand with a new crowd.2.they’re too pricey and the brand comes loaded with strong associations of the countryside, adventure and its legendary 4x4 capabilities. they thought the brand attracted a certain type of person: rich, successful, status seekers.
L E A R N I N G F R O M L U X U RYIn search of a new way of thinking, we looked at the codes of luxur y and theconventions of the categor y.We also dug deeper to understand our new audience.We revisited the client’s research and we conducted our own 3 . We wanted to know whatbrands they valued, what ideas made them envious, what brands had to do to connect withthem and what kind of relationship they respected with their favourite companies.their thoughts were surprisingly similar. the research underlined how connected this group wasand the high demands they placed on brands to keep up with them. but the most interesting insightwas that they all wanted a more immersive experience with the things that they find interesting.In all the things they were passionate about 4, the examples they respected invited them into aworld and immersed them in a story, whether that was going to see an Anish kapoor installation orexperiencing the theatre group Fuerzabruta, where you’re expected to be a collaborator in the show.3. We spoke to bloggers and people in the creative industries, we chatted to people from across the world that worked in fashion, music, art and design.4. Music, art, film, theatre.
THE DISCONNECTbut when we looked at the luxur y categor y, these demandsseemed to be at odds with the codes of ‘old luxur y ’ thatdominated the industr y. the demands of this audience weretotally out of sync with most luxur y brands.Old luxur y was characterised by a narcissistic, sur face,one-way and image obsessed attitude.It was luxur y accessed at arms length.It was a closed world.And that was our eureka moment.that was when we realised that launching the newrange rover was bigger than launching the car to anew audience, it was about redefining luxur y,from a closed world to immersive story telling.
R E D E F I N I N G L U X U RY : new stOriesstor y telling has always been at the heart of luxur y brands.the industr y creates objects of craft and beauty. naturally,people want to know the stor y behind the inspiration.but stor y telling ( just like luxur y) is being re-invented.t V shows and holly wood are creating new forms of narrativethat encourage us to not only watch but to participate.In today ’s world, people want to get involved in a stor y, tocar ve out a role for themselves, to make it their own.by understanding the successful launches in modern culture,we wanted to create an idea that unfolded more like amulti-layered film launch than a traditional car campaign.
R E D E F I N I N G L U X U RY : FrOm cAr cOmPAnY tO mediA brAnd range rover had never announced the launch of a new car so early before. the fact the car was unavailable for nearly 16 months created a unique opportunity: it was a chance to create an immersive brand stor y around the car and take people on a journey over a longer period than a traditional campaign. but to achieve this we would have to persuade range rover to behave in a new way. We would be creating a stream of stories and content, we would be editing and curating in real-time. the traditional (linear) customer journey had no relevance in this new environment and we asked range rover to behave more like a ‘deep’ brand that was comfortable with complexity and nuance. We would be asking them to act more like a real-time publisher than a traditional car company.
R E D E F I N I N G L U X U RY : A new rOLe FOr PLAnninGour new approach wouldn’t only place new demands on range rover; itwould also change the way we as planners would have to behave.our planning training had taught us the power of logic and the beauty of précis.but in this new environment of immersive stor y telling we had to actdifferently. Instead of behaving like traditional planners we had to becomemore like magazine editors. We needed to think about the content wewere creating, how we edit and pace it, how we spark conversationsand how we respond. We had to be at the centre of the action, not onthe edges and we had to become active participants in the stor y.All of this meant that the language of ‘messaging’ and ‘campaign’ just didn’twork; ‘stor y ’ and ‘project’ were better descriptors to help guide the creatives.
G E T T I N G TO T H E I D E AWe knew we couldn’t reduce the brand to a list of nounsand adjectives; we had to be freer and more fluid.less reductionist.An organising thought would only be useful if itbecame the reference for inspiration that could beflexed in different ways across different media.but most importantly, from all of our analysis of the categor y andthe new consumer, we knew our idea had to let people into therange rover brand and into a stor y they could shape and be part of.
T H E I D E A : PULse OF the citY PrOjectthe range rover evoque is a car inspired by the city. the designersat range rover love cities and they drew from architecture,technology and design to create a car for the city. As a resultwe wanted to celebrate the inspiration behind the car.so we explored what was great about cities:Music. People. streets. Architecture. Design.Fashion. excitement. Colour.All these things make up the pulse of the city. so we wanted tocreate a project that we could invite people into, that wouldalways celebrate the relationship between three things: people,cities and the car. We called it the Pulse of the City Project.
L AY E R S O F T H E S TO RYWithin the Pulse of the City Project we saw each of the different stages of atraditional car launch (Announcement, reveal, Personalisation) as a differentchapter in our immersive stor y. And at ever y stage of the journey to launchwe worked with our creatives to create more immersive experiences.
C H A P T E R 1 : AnnOUncementHello evoqueIn the first chapter we didn’t just announce the car at amotor show, we launched our Pulse of the City Project.At the heart of the project was a website called helloevoque.com. ever y monthwe asked questions about people’s cities, sharing answers and creating a newcity pulse based on what was really happening. We asked tastemakers (who wecalled City shapers) around the world to get involved 5 . People could go to thewebsite and view city shaper journeys around their city and what they had to say.We created a Pulse app that anyone could download and become part of theproject. the app, via GPs technology, allowed people to draw their movementsacross their city and create beautiful data visualisations of their journeys.these could then be shared on the website or across their own social mediaspaces. the more people got involved, the more their city came to life.5. People like Daisy lowe, henry holland, ok Go, Greg kozo, tadi rock, osgemeos and Georgina Chapman.
C H A P T E R 2 : reVeALI n t e r a c t I v e s t r e e t g a l l e ryon the 27th september 2010 in Paris, we unveiled the evoque street Galler y -four pop-up art installations that were inspired by the new car. Insteadof launching the car at a traditional motor show we created bespokepieces of art that the public could enjoy during Paris Fashion Week.each piece of art was uniquely designed around the wireframe of the evoque byleading Parisian artists 6 who created contemporar y pieces of art that reflectedthe four key aspects of the range rover evoque 7. the four installations could beviewed by the public at key Parisian landmarks across the city 8 . People could walkaround the pieces and understand the different product stories behind the car.online, the evoque street Galler y reached a readership of over 60.5million people and there were 3,456 blog posts about the event. thetelegraph made one of the pieces their Picture of the Day.6. Andre, Jean-Charles de Castelbajac, surface to Air and yorgo toplas7. luxury, design, technology and sustainability8. Pompidou Centre, Palais de tokyo, Musee Des Arts and Quai henri IV
C H A P T E R 2 : reVeALgeo arton the 17th november 2010 in lA, we collaborated with ok Go (the most downloadedband in histor y) to create a unique piece of art that used the city as a canvas.the Dance through your City idea involved the band creating a massive digitalsign of their name across the streets of l A using GPs technology via the Pulseapp. We invited fans of the group to join the band on their journey throughl A and become part of a unique musical parade 9 . After the news spread onlineother people got involved in the project and city shapers including Joshrubin and Mia Freedman created their own geo-art in new york and sydney.9. the film was nominated for an MtV o Award for ‘innovative use of technology in a video’.
C H A P T E R 3 : PersOnALisAtiOnAs people get closer to purchase, car companies usually createan online piece of software called a configurator that personalisesa car for them. but how could we make this more immersive?
C H A P T E R 3 : PersOnALisAtiOnb e I n g H e n ryWe created an immersive film that took people on a journey through9 different stor ylines and 32 potential endings. It was an interactiveaction-love-fantasy-comedy-adventure about choices in which peoplecould (subtly) create their own personalised range rover evoque. Viewers got to decide how henr y, the films lead character, proceeds through the narrative at various stages. Does he head straight into the restaurant to meet his sisters and grandma, or does he decide to walk around the corner and“forget” about his family reunion? each choice viewers make on behalf henr y takes him on a different journey through a multiple strand stor y, and each choice creates a personalised car – which you find out when the film has played out.
CONCLUSIONPlanning’s contribution to this stor y was redefining howa car company behaves. At ever y point in the pre-launchstor y we wanted to create a more immersive experience andchallenge the conventions of the car (and luxur y) categor y.by combining technology with a cast of characterswe were able to tell the stor y of a car inspired by thecity and create and publish content like a magazine.And in reframing the problem, we had to redefine ourrole as planners. We now understand that you can nolonger stand to the side of a stor y anymore. If we’regoing to immerse people in brands, and the stories theywant to tell, we have to be part of the stor y ourselves.Word count: 1998
c r e At i V e w O r ka s w e L L a s t h e w o r k m e n t i o n e d i n t h e pa p e r , w e a Ls o c r e at e d L ot s o f ot h e r i n t e r e s t i n g c o n t e n t t h at w a s i n s p i r e d b y p e o p L e , c i t i e s a n d t h e c a r .
helloevoque.com was the centrepiece to the Pulse of the City Project where people could explore the thoughtsand journeys of city shapers and others across some of the most exciting cities in the world.
the Pulse app allows people to draw their movements across their city and create beautiful data visualisations.
PULse oF the CIt y PULse oF the CIt y PULse oF the CIt y PULse oF the CIt y PULse oF the CIt y whAt which whAt whAt’s iF YOU insPires wOrds mAde YOU the mOOd cOULd YOU About DesCrIbe sMIle oF your sPend tOdAY your CIt y your CIt y toDAy? CIt y AnYwhere toDAy? toDAy? toDAy? in YOUr citY, Where WoulD It be? PULse oF the CIt y PULse oF the CIt y PULse oF the CIt y PULse oF the CIt y PULse oF the CIt y whAt whAt when whAt when Are YOU cAn YOU is YOUr mAkes YOU YOU Are lookInG heAr In cit Y Most PrOUd oF AwAY FrOm ForWArD your CIt y AlIVe? your CIt y? YOUr cit Y, to toDAy? toDAy? WhAt Do you MIss?ever y month we asked questions about people’s cities, sharing answers andcreating a new city pulse based on what was really happening.
When the ‘spy cars’ were released from the factory, instead ofbefore the physical car was revealed we worked with artist benedict radcliffe keeping them a secret like other car launches, we created images withto create wireframe pieces of art that were life-size versions of the car. timothy saccenti that announced their colourful arrival to the world.
E V O q U E S T R E E T G A L L E RYWe collaborated with four leading Parisian artists to create bespoke pieces of wireframe art, each one telling a different stor yabout the car. People could walk around the pieces and experience them at different locations during Paris Fashion Week.
RANGE ROVER - EVOqUEW H at ’ s t H e o p p o r t u n I t y f o r t H I s b r a n d ?the new range rover evoque is range rover ’s design answer to the modern world; it will bethe smallest, lightest and most efficient range rover ever built. the car has been inspiredby the city; the designers at range rover drew from architecture, design and technology.the evoque marks the moment when range rover will open its arms to a whole new group of buyersand invite them in. And the launch of this car is an opportunity to shine new light on the brand.W H at ’ s t H e r o l e f o r c o m m u n I c at I o n s ?We have been asked to create a global Pr & marketing campaign that will run over a periodof 16 months before the car goes on sale in key markets. there are three key objectives:1. build anticipation for the new range rover evoque.2. Connect range rover with a new audience.3. Drive pre-orders of the car.
RANGE ROVER - EVOqUEW H o a r e W e ta l k I n g t o ?We need to reach out and engage people living in world cities likelondon, new york, l A, berlin and shanghai. these are people with acity-state-of-mind who love the creative energy of their city and areplugged into the heart of city life. they love brands (and experiences)that let them into a stor y they can feel part of, whether that’s aholly wood movie, a music gig or a piece of installation art.W H at s H o u l d t H e k e y I n g r e d I e n t s o f t H e I d e a b e ?PeoPle x CItIes x CAr