Volkswagen DM JOURNEYS by Proximity London

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Industry Cars
Media Direct marketing
Market United Kingdom
Agency Proximity London
Executive Creative Director Caitlin Ryan
Art Director Jo Jenkins
Copywriter Maxine Gallagher
Designer Elsa Lima
Released March 2011


Caples Awards 2011
Digital Email Gold
Technique Best art direction Bronze

Credits & Description

Category: Direct Response Digital: Email Marketing
Advertiser: VOLKSWAGEN
Product/Service: AUTOMOBILE
Date of First Appearance: Mar 8 2011
Entry URL:
Executive Creative Director: Caitlin Ryan (Proximity)
Art Director: Jo Jenkins (Proximity)
Planner: Jo Powell (Proximity)
Copywriter: Maxine Gallagher (Proximity)
Account Manager: Joseph Pirrie (Proximity)
Account Manager: Jo Cotton (Proximity)
Account Manager: Natalie Brimson (Proximity)
Designer: Elsa Lima (Proximity)
Digital Designer: Adam Sime (Proximity)
Data Controller: Suzanne Swanepoel (Proximity)
Digital Developer: Kwai Cheung (Proximity)
Media placement: Not Applicable As Email - N/A - N/A

Describe the brief/objective of the direct campaign.
While test driving a new VW is a tactile, sensory experience that is an important precursor to purchase … an email doesn’t quite have the same impact. How could we put the enjoyment of driving a brand new Volkswagen into people’s inboxes, and make it stand out from the many other emails they receive? As part of an ongoing programme of communications aimed at customers and prospects in their repurchase window, we needed to inspire Volkswagen prospects to take a test drive. We knew which model they were interested in and now wanted to create an email that would inspire them to now try it out for themselves.

Describe the creative solution to the brief/objective with reference to the projected response rates and desired outcome.
The world’s first email test drive. Eighteen side-scrolling rather than downward scrolling emails, bring each Volkswagen model to life in digital form. Using this innovative format, the prospect could ‘drive’ along their email. For each model, we wove together a stream of consciousness with beautiful typography and illustration to evoke the unique feeling of driving that particular car. With the type of craft and attention to detail that is too often reserved only for print. The result, An emotional journey that brings the values of VW advertising craft and attention to detail – into the much maligned email format.

Explain why the creative execution was relevant to the product or service.
Volkswagen is rightly proud of its distinct personality. It dares to be witty, even self-deprecating, and people expect something different from its advertising. So rather than tread the commonly worn path of lists of product features and stock photos, we felt it was important to surprise, to entertain, to appeal to emotions. The side-scroll was the first step, then a lot of time was spent crafting typography, text and illustration to create something that was perfectly Volkswagen. After all, Volkswagen customers are some of the most loyal in the car market, so why not treat them to a beautifully crafted piece of communication, created with love?

Describe the results in as much detail as possible with particular reference to the RESPONSE of the target audience including deliverability statistics, response rates, click throughs, sales cost per response, relationships built and overall return on investment.
The first stage of the campaign has delivered open rates of 42.9%, almost double the UK average of 22%*. Click-through rates are 43.5%, far above the UK average of 17%*. It’s too soon to say how many people took test drives (it takes several months to get results from VW dealers), but so far it’s clear we’ve succeeded in keeping potential customers engaged with the Volkswagen brand – and prompted them to find out more about taking a test drive.

*Source: Redwood