Newspaper Brands Online: Creative Solution - Toyota

The story

The Toyota Auris was an instant hit among loyal Toyota customers. But how to tell everyone else about this great new car?

The brief from Toyota was to create emotional engagement with the Auris and break through the car buyers' tendency to stick with the tried and tested. The target audience was men over 40 years old "with an optimistic attitude and who like the quality things in life". Toyota's media agency, ZenithOptimedia, worked closely with Paul Tipper, the digital strategist at Associated Northcliffe Digital, the newspaper group's digital publishing division.

To design the best campaign for Auris awareness, the Mail's creative team took findings from the paper's reader panel, which homed in on four key attractions of the Auris - comfort, space, design and safety.

The importance of the car's interior comfort and ergonomics was underlined by additional information from Toyota, which found that purchase consideration on the Auris rose by 43 per cent once customers sat in the car. Clearly, generating test drives was one of the key objectives of the promotion.

A microsite on dailymail.co.uk developed and grew throughout the four-week campaign, with each week focusing on one of the car's four key attractions, and an invitation for readers to enter a prize draw. Each of the key benefits was linked to an iconic image to generate emotional identification, and each image was, in turn, linked to a prize.

In week one, comfort was the key benefit and the iconic image was a hammock, with the prize being a week in Jamaica. Space, design and safety were added in succeeding weeks, with more great prizes.

Space was represented by business class travel, and the prize was business class flights to New York. Design was associated with the Malmaison Hotels, and the prize was a weekend at one of those hotels. The image chosen for safety was the pyramids of Egypt, and the prize was a long weekend break to see them.

The site carried links to the Auris website, inviting readers to apply for a brochure and/or a test drive.

Print advertorial ran in the Daily Mail's Weekend Magazine, with a double-page spread on each week's key benefit, enhanced by great photography. The advertorial drove readers both to the microsite and to Toyota's site.

Online, the Mail Online homepage steered users to the microsite, with the tabs for the four key attractions going live one after another. Promotion boxes ran at the foot of article pages, and bespoke e-mails were sent to 49,000 registered site users aged 40 and over.

The microsite received 29,158 unique users - 20 per cent of them went on to toyota.co.uk and more than a third of those users requested a brochure or test drive. The promotion succeeded in building interest and awareness over the four weeks, with unique user numbers rising week after week so that there were more than twice as many unique visitors in week four than in week one.

Spontaneous brand awareness almost doubled and likelihood to purchase soared by 160 per cent. Advertising awareness online rose by a remarkable 493 per cent.

A few weeks later, following on from the initial success, the campaign was repeated in The Mail on Sunday.

"The campaign was really strong - both from a creative and results perspective," Charlotte Reich, the strategic partnership director at Newcast, ZenithOptimedia, said. "Daily Mail readers and users are really responsive, and helped us achieve great ROI on this campaign."

To see more digital images, go to www.nmauk.co.uk/digital