How Kia Captured Coolness On Facebook

Kia Motors America scored a 13 point lift in brand awareness following the launch of the Soul as a direct result of the company's outreach and engagement campaign aiming for young people on Facebook.

Brand awarewness of the Kia Soul has risen thanks to a Facebook campaign, and the numbers prove it.

Kia Motors America reports a 13 percent increase in awareness about the Soul, according to Facebook Marketing Solutions’ first time posting a case study related to an automobile brand.

Nielsen Media Group found that 14 percent of individuals said their perception of the Kia brand improved after seeing the ads on Facebook, a significant increase over the control group.

The Kia Soul, an urban passenger vehicle car launched in 2009, was designed with the social media generation in mind. The car company sought to leverage Facebook’s scale, targeting and engagement features to reach its target audience on the channels where this audience obtained its information.

“What we like most about Facebook is that we not only have the opportunity to create a community, but we can also engage in targeted advertising,” Dave Schoonover, National Manager of customer relationship management and digital marketing for Kia, says in the case study.

Some of the features of the Kia Soul Facebook campaign have included:

  • An entire experience within the Facebook page where stunning visual representations of its products were showcased;
  • A custom tab with an augmented reality game called “Go Hamster Go!” that was featured across other advertising platforms, with a face tracker component that upped the campaign’s “cool” factor, and
  • Engagement ads including premium video ads, premium like ads, and premium poll ads, which were the primary tool used to educate consumers on key product information.

Kia executives have good reason to be thrilled with the results of their campaign. They include:

  • The premium video like ads, including the names of friends who had already connected to Kia via “friends of connections” targeting, resulted in the highest engagement rate for the campaign.
  • There are now over 89,000 people who are part of the Kia Soul Facebook community, which means the brand can reach over 31 million friends of those fans with friends of connections targeting.

Because of the community Kia built on Facebook, the company was able to launch a follow-up ad campaign in 2010, which is generally unheard of in the industry; most ad campaigns for new cars have a 12-month buy window.

Readers, what do you think of the Kia Soul campaign?