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Automotive

Automotive is a major advertising sector, highly consolidated among a small number of international car brands. Auto advertising can be either model-specific (particularly when there is a new model to promote), or at a brand level. Key trends in the industry include the shift toward more eco-friendly models and the rise of the ‘connected’ car. Trends to watch out for include the rise of ‘driverless’ cars.

Key Reading

Important papers from across the WARC database

This multi-paper feature looks at the different ways that automobiles are marketed and how the sector needs to adapt. From eco-friendly engines to digital connectivity, technology is changing what consumers demand and expect from a vehicle.
Four consumer profiles for people buying cars based on different mixes of research and buying patterns.
An explanation of why the traditional car-buying purchase funnel used by many marketers is flawed.
Andy Nairn explores the success of automotive ads by analysing a range of winning IPA case studies.

Case Study

This campaign explores how BMW Group, the German car manufacturer, launched a worldwide campaign, following a live event in Germany, to coincide with its 100-year anniversary.

Case Study

This case study describes how car manufacturer Toyota brought emergency communications to the 5.3 million square kilometres of Australia's landmass that currently receives no mobile signal, by installing signal-providing devices in its LandCruiser models.

Case Study

This case study describes how Toyota, the car maker, motivated staff in Toyota Centres across the UK in order to increase local marketing activity before the launch of a new model.

Case Study

This case study describes how Renault, the car maker, launched a new 4x4 model into a highly competitive market in the UK using a targeted CRM programme.

Case Study

This case study reveals how a video of a dog parking a car became car maker Vauxhall's most successful social campaign ever in the UK.

Case Study

This case study describes how car-maker Ford used an eight-minute film, starring Mads Mikkelsen, to launch its Edge SUV across Europe.
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Article

This article outlines how electric vehicle brands such as Nissan and Toyota are raising the game in automotive advertising, using new technologies and innovative approaches.

Article

This event report outlines how Indian Motorcycle has driven progress in a category with distinct characteristics and unique forms of consumer behavior.

Article

This event report explains how Volkswagen, the car manufacturer, used a brand crisis to bring forward innovative projects and overhaul its marketing strategy.

Article

This short report summarises the results for the automotive category from the 2017 WARC 100, which ranks the world's best advertising campaigns based on performance in effectiveness and strategy competitions.

Article

This article examines what has changed in the car industry as the advent of leasing and renting deals has made consumers less attached to their cars, and technology has shifted focus from mechanics to in-car experiences.

Article

This article introduces a series of papers on marketing automobiles: the different ways that automobiles are marketed and how this will change in the future.

Article

This article considers what automotive brands need to do to achieve cut-through in an age of borderless digital content, looking at examples of 'blockbuster marketing' through campaigns such as BMW's The Hire.
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  1. Article

    This article introduces a series of papers on marketing automobiles: the different ways that automobiles are marketed and how this will change in the future.

  2. Article

    This event report explores the position of print and digital media in influencing customers' car buying decisions, according to Auto-Trader, the used-car magazine.

  3. Article

    This event report looks at the current developments in cars, as the industry undergoes massive change in which the fuel becomes electricity, the isolated box becomes connected, and sharing overtakes ownership.

  4. Article

    This case study describes how Volvo, a car brand in the UK, partnered with a paint company to create an innovative reflective paint to provide safety to cyclists, to make safety – and by extension Volvo – exciting again.

  5. Article

    This case study describes how Swedish company Volvo Trucks set out to maximise awareness of its new range of trucks.

  6. Article

    This article draws on a new study to explain how cars are really purchased and illustrate the flaws in the dominant funnel purchase model.

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