Tuesday, October 9, 2012

Perception Is Reality For Luxury Autos

In brand marketing wars perception can affect reality. And in the luxury auto sector, where discretionary consumer income is no barrier to brand selection, capturing the top brand perception spot can impact market  share. That's what German automaker Mercedes-Benz is counting on since it pulled ahead of competitors like BMW and Audi, according to a recent study by YouGov BrandIndex affluent car buyer survey. The study was based on results from U.S. adults 18+ with an annual income of $120,000 and above, and who plan to make a luxury auto purchase within the next 12 months. Respondents cited Mercedes as their top choice and the study showed that Mercedes’ marketing played a major role in catapulting the brand to the top spot. So what was it about Mercedes' advertising strategy that resonated? It premiered a major traditional TV campaign, focused on its mbrace2 connectivity system standard feature, during its sponsorship of the U.S. Open tournament. The TV spots were supported via digital and social media campaign extensions, scheduled to run up against its second major event sponsorship in just a few weeks. Mercedes sandwiched traditional media TV schedules before and after the high-profile Fashion Week, launching new creative to introduce its new C-Class vehicle. It leveraged a heightened brand awareness period between two major sponsorships to highlight a competitive standard feature and have the campaign serve as a teaser to the launch of its new 2013 C-class model. The well-orchestrated marketing maneuver, which featured great integration of digital and social, is what gave Mercedes-Benz its Rainmaker distinction.

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