We are in 2020, an era where information is readily available and constantly updated. Car brands are having to re-imagine themselves and adapt to this world of growing technologies. The cars that are built and the way we use them will be significantly different in the next 10 years. We are entering the age of the electric vehicle.
3 priorities shape this industry transformation:
- Green – Concerns about pollution change automobile power options.
- Convenience – Cities are getting more congested. Ownership costs are rising, while cars are sitting unused 95% of the time.
- Safety – Reducing accidents has always been a priority, but with an aging user base safety becomes even more important.
A big part of the development of the automobile is the race for greener and alternative means of power consumption. Pair that with the high price of gas and an ever-growing population. These priorities create an opportunity to match cars specifically to the people who need them.
Electric Vehicle Demand is Growing
The popularity of electronic vehicles is on the rise. As posed by NPR, Non-gas car models are likely to nearly triple by 2025. Within only 5 years we will start seeing a surge of electric vehicles on the road. It’s no surprise then that by 2040, electric cars could make up 57% of all passenger car sales worldwide.
To drive this growth, automotive companies have the unique responsibility to educate consumers about new technologies. The goal is to pique their interest and encourage more engagement. This helps consumers feel more comfortable when choosing between an electric and standard gas-powered vehicle.
Creating Awareness and Engaging Audiences
Conventional advertising methods, such as print and TV commercials are not foolproof options. They are not particularly suited to convey and educate viewers in this complex information. That’s why automotive companies like BMW have to approach the subject differently.
BMW asked Dan Chapman, Technical Director at Cassette, London, UK, to educate consumers on the future of electric cars. BMW had an ideal location to engage potential car buyers with its connections to the Formula E.
Cassette was given the opportunity to create an interactive and memorable activity to drive this education. This experience was designed for those at the event to better familiarize them with this technology.
Formula E and The Electric Vehicle
At Formula E it was easy to identify a common interest with consumers – race cars. So, race cars bridged consumer awareness and the future. The technology used to continually enhance these race cars eventually filters down to everyday electric cars.
In earlier seasons of Formula E, drivers would have to switch cars mid-race due to battery life. Now with advancements in fast charging technology, they can continuously run the track at speeds up to 170MPH, but it does require some action on the drivers’ part.
Cassette had an interesting challenge. They sought out the best way to educate consumers. How would this electric vehicle charging technology one day make its way into the cars we drive?
Using Real Time Technology to Educate Consumers
Formula E goers want entertainment. With that in mind, Dan and his team created a multiplayer racing game. This installation was in an enclosed environment using an array of large LCD panels. The game, iRacing, included stands that had retro arcade game controllers packed with sub-woofers for a force feedback experience.
Players immediately started learning about electric vehicle technology while playing. The driver would have to tactically use brakes to generate electricity and charge the battery. If the player failed to, the car would lose battery life and would be unable to finish the race. To make this point the main focus, they removed steering as the main part of game play. Steering was too much of a distraction.
Communication Through Experience
The iRacing example may seem rather simple. It is interesting to see how much of your narrative you can remove while keeping your message intact. In this case, the simple action of running the race while keeping your battery-powered drove the message home without overwhelming the users with information.
This racing game provided a hook, that not only educated but also created excitement for the future of electric autonomous cars. How can you use this form of communication in your marketing strategy?
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