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3 Automotive Brands that Nailed Their Brand Awareness Campaigns with TikTok

95% of vehicle buyers use different digital platforms to find more information about their preferred brands. Also, the number of automotive consumers who research online about their preferred brands is twice the number of buyers who reach out to a dealer to inform them about different brands.

Naturally, automotive brands today not only rely on TV advertisements and billboards to drive home their message but are also quickly adapting to the rapidly evolving digital landscape. Major brands have begun marketing themselves on different social media platforms that are often frequented by their target audience and other potential buyers.

These platforms provide automotive brands with the exposure that they need to survive and thrive in an industry where the competition is immense and buyers are few, especially in the wake of COVID-19 and the worldwide economic downturn.

To that end, TikTok has emerged as a highly reliable platform that plays an instrumental role in driving brand awareness, just like it did in the case of these three automotive companies.

1. Smart

Smart is a German automotive brand that manufactures microcars and subcompacts, primarily the Forfour and Fortwo.

Their Objectives

Smart is the only automotive brand that gave up combustion engines and focused on electric engines instead. It wanted to drive the message and boost awareness for its all-electric range within a new German audience.

Approach & Solution

Smart joined hands with TikTok and ran a Branded Hashtag Challenge to reach potential buyers, fans, and future customers. Their #AllElectricNow campaign invited users to demonstrate their transformation.

Smart also brought onboard popular German Creators and gave users the chance to engage with them. Smart used a creative and effective concept, which was based on TikTok’s popular trend of outfit changes. The TikTok community participated in the campaign with the utmost fervor, from showing their pacey dance move transformations to using electric-style effects.

Their Result

The TikTok campaign was immensely successful for Smart and surpassed all previous benchmarks by garnering over 850M views on the videos. Also, there were 199,000 video submissions. Moreover, the Branded Hashtag Challenge raked in 40 million Discover page views too.

2. Nissan Australia

Nissan was about to launch its new brand Nissan JUKE in Australia and wanted to drive awareness for the same.

Their Objectives

Nissan sought to devise an interactive TikTok campaign to tap into the creativity of the TikTok community to create awareness for its latest brand and set in motion a viral trend.

Approach & Solution

Nissan launched TikTok’s flagship Branded Hashtag Challenge and roped in official TikTok creators to kickstart the campaign and inspire their audience to post their unique videos with the #improvisewithJUKE hashtag and music.

The campaign quickly turned into a competition, wherein the best user submissions would get a chance to feature as voiceovers in the JUKE TV commercial.

The #improvisewithJUKE was launched with the premium TopView placement, which put the brand front and center in the For You feed when the users opened the app. An official page for the Branded Hashtag Challenge was curated, which featured the best user-generated content.

The growing volume of content led to a trend, inspiring the TikTok community to post their own interpretations. Auction In-Feed Ads further drove exposure through the entire campaign with a highly cost-effective reach and awareness.

The Result

The #improvisewithJUKE campaign became one of the most successful campaigns in Australia, fetching 129.4 million views from across the globe. The campaign generated more than 34,000 video creations and also resulted in a 92.9% boost in Nissan JUKE’s brand awareness. Moreover, the premium TopView placement surpassed the benchmarks with a high click-through rate of 17.35% and an engagement rate of 17.96%.


MINI had launched its all-new MINI Electric Hatch in Australia and New Zealand and wanted to reach new audiences to boost its sales.

Their Objectives

MINI wanted to drive awareness around its latest launch and eventually push the sales for the same.

Approach & Solution

MINI devised a highly creative and energetic TikTok campaign, which amplified the agelessness of the MINI Electric Hatch. The campaign was designed to introduce its new audience to the concept of fun, electric mobility.

MINI used targeted brand Premium In-Feed Ads and utilized business intelligence from the consulting firm to become the first automotive brand in Australasia to launch a TikTok campaign.

These Brand Premium In-Feed Ads are the first thing that the users see in their For You feed and they appear alongside their favorite content.

The Result

The TikTok campaign performed beyond the expectations of MINI’s management. The ad was viewed more than 1.2 million times and fetched a high engagement rate of 4.6%. Also, the click-through rate was quite impressive at 1.24%.

Wrapping Up

While TikTok certainly makes for an excellent marketing platform, having a sound understanding of its different ad formats can help deliver excellent results. While Branded Hashtag Challenges are quite likely to deliver the expected results, they are usually expensive and not recommended for small brands.

They can instead go for TopView ad placement, which would make their content the first thing that the users would see when they open their app. Also, trying the In-Feed Ads can deliver the desired results as they emerge first when the users scroll through their For You feed. However, it’s ultimately about how catchy and engaging your content is; consider your job half done if you get that right!

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