Marketing cars: Change media gear

Nick Bull
Millward Brown

Car marketers need to take some risk with their media placement and ensure that new channels are tested, using a 70:20:10 allocation model.

While automotive marketers are accustomed to changing the creative content of their campaigns on a regular basis, there is no automatic driver that encourages the adoption of new media channels. Changing established media allocations is risky; weighing the options requires time, effort and skill. The fear of making the wrong decision in today's economic climate is all too clear.

But avoiding innovation in car marketing carries its own risk. The automotive landscape is fast moving, and those who don't advance with it will be left behind. Automotive marketers need a way to embrace change without being swallowed up by it. Maybe they should follow the lead of the Coca-Cola Company. In its quest to double the size of its business by 2020, Coca-Cola is planning to apportion its marketing spend according to the 70:20:10 investment principle. This will see: 70% spent on low-risk media options, such as TV, outdoor, print, radio and sponsorship; 20% to innovate based on what has worked successfully in the past; and 10% to fund high-risk media content involving new ideas.