Tomorrow, Honda is releasing what it calls the first hybrid sports car, and the automaker is promoting its 2011 CR-Z with a major marketing push it hopes will keep the wheels of commerce turning. By reaching out to drivers with a multichannel interactive campaign, Honda shows the value of engaging consumers on their preferred platforms.
The company is looking to generate buzz on a number of social platforms. The New York Times reports Honda will launch a CR-Z model in the Car Town application for Facebook, where the model already boasts an international fan page. It will also create ads to appear on Hulu and YouTube – which Brafton reported are among the fastest-growing video ad platforms. Additionally, the CR-Z will be featured in iPad applications to catch the clicks of mobile users.
Honda wants to latch on to these emerging platforms to emphasize the innovation of the CR-Z as a hybrid vehicle, but it is also planning to use some more well-worn marketing platforms with innovative twists. The Times reports that the campaign will include television, movie, print and traditional online ads with 3D elements. Steven Center, vice president of advertising for Honda, suggests hybrid technology makes a "car more than 2D," so the ad campaign reflects this.
Through creative advertising elements, Honda is telling a story about its futuristic, eco-friendly car. The interactive components of its campaign on Facebook and the three-dimensional renderings of the car on various platforms are positioned to let users see themselves as part of the narrative while they engage the CR-Z through different channels.
Consumer engagement is something other marketers should consider when creating multichannel campaigns. Brafton reported that Inception's marketing campaign works like a multichannel dream not only because it is accessible through myriad platforms, but also because it asks consumers to interact with the film in different ways, creating a virtual world that draws them into the experience of the movie.
The Honda campaign stands to create the same effect for consumers in the automobile sector, and marketers in other industries can create compelling, interactive content for users to discover through various channels as well.