Mercedes has unveiled a campaign that targeted Russians who found themselves carless after their own vehicles had been towed for being illegally parked.
Mercedes wanted a campaign that would target the emerging middle-class who own large and expensive cars. Mercedes realised this group had shown virtually no interest in its Smart Cars but that they struggled the most in a city where illegally parked cars are immediately towed to a site an hour from Moscow’s centre.
Devised by BBDO Moscow, Mercedes Smart Cars launched a campaign entitled ‘The Unexpected Test Drive’, offering stranded drivers the chance to try out the Smart car when they needed it most.
40 Smart cars saved 623 car-less drivers during three days, in parking lots around eight Russian shopping malls
Mercedes claims as a direct result of the campaign over 70 per cent of the drivers who tested the Smart Car became “true believers” in the efficiency of a smaller car over a larger one and advocated the Smart Car on their vkontakte (a Russian social media network) and Facebook profiles.
Meanwhile, test drives increased 10 fold and sales increased by 300 per cent in the two weeks following the event.