Come Meet Your Match

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Title

Come Meet Your Match

Advertiser:

Auto Trader

Year:

2007

Source:

John St

Product Category:

Auto & Auto Services

OOH Format:

Outdoor, Transit shelter

Country:

Canada

Objective:

Used car sales are epitomized by the image of the slippery used car salesman. And marketers have done little to improve negative perceptions – until now. SITUATION ANALYSIS: Auto Trader had historically done well as a magazine, and was continuing to do reasonably well. However, the market was moving online – and Auto Trader was not getting its fair share. The goal was to significantly grow online visits and sale postings. Because of the brand’s reach, the plan also had to cover every nook and cranny of Canada, with a 2-part budget: $2.5 million for a national fall 2006 campaign, and $1.5 million for the following spring.

Target Group:

Men in market for new automobile

Strategy and Media Used:

Competitive advertising had been rational and functional. But the relationship a man has with his vehicle can be much like the one he has with the opposite sex. So Auto Trader would play the role of matchmaker. EXECUTION: Online dating is considerably more attractive than cruising bars hoping to meet your soul mate. So a fully inte- grated matchmaker campaign launched in September 2006. It spoofed online dating by likening the perfect match in life to finding your perfect car. TV (:30s and :15s), out-of-home (billboards, transit shelters, specialty digital boards) and online all supported the new positioning.

Results:

The number of sellers using Auto Trader had been declining, and this turned around. Meanwhile buyers (unique visits to Autotrader.ca) grew by 17%, well ahead of expectations. Autotrader.ca was also the top online destination for automotive informa- tion among men 18-34. And brand health scores shot up for awareness, uniqueness and relevance. [The case provided detailed information.] CAUSE & EFFECT: Autotrader.ca was outspent by entrenched competitors, so spending was not the issue. And other than the launch of the ”Come meet your match” there were no changes to the Auto Trader environment to account for the results.