This project was completed as an entry for the 2019 Effie Collegiate competition.
The Effie Collegiate competition is modeled after the professional competition of the same name, calling on the next generation’s advertising, marketing, design and communication students to work on real world business challenges. Subaru served as the client, sponsoring this year’s challenge, and hundreds of teams responded.
The Subaru Brand Challenge asked us to develop a non-traditional, integrated, multi-channel marketing campaign that reinvents the experience of buying a new car to meet the expectations and lifestyles of the Millennial/Gen Z audience while focusing on the shopping and purchase experience. There were two main objectives our project needed to fulfill. First, identify the ideal wants and expectations of this emerging new car buyer as they move through their purchase journey. Second, design a comprehensive marketing communications plan that effectively reaches these buyers. Subaru outlined our target audience to be Experience Seekers, age 20-40.
Our team's final project, Subaru Loves Driving Innovation, was named a finalist in the competition and took second-place overall. Judges called our entry an “industry changer” and an idea that taps “into the already established behaviors of the target audience.” The team was made up of four Kent State students in the College of Communication and Information (CCI): Ashley Heilman, ’19 (advertising), Noah Lewchenko, ’19 (advertising), Abby Peters, ’19 (advertising) and Kelsey Velemirovich, ’20 (visual communication design).
The way Millennials and Gen-Z view purchases differ vastly from what most companies are used to. The concept of walking into a store, or even dealership, sounds outdated and taxing to those groups. Different purchasing outlets aren’t just disrupting the typical brick and mortar stores, they’re revamping the way consumers view traditional shopping. Major purchases, such as buying a car, are getting disrupted by the online option. Buyers want to find the car of their dreams, but at their own pace and on their own terms. That’s where Subaru Loves Driving Innovation comes in.
Newer generations have become accustomed to comfortable, online shopping bubbles; how can Subaru fit into those bubbles without “popping them?”
Research showed that fixing one consumer pain point improves purchasing satisfaction, solving all of them would create their ultimate experience.
Stop selling cars and truly market them.
A truly self-serve, hassle-free solution to purchasing a car.
The results will be measured by the number of cars sold through the online program and traffic through media channels.
Visual Creative, Researcher