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In-depth driver database revs up KZN Top Shop launch

The depth of Brandyourcar.com’s driver/vehicle database was recently put to the test when it was challenged to source a vintage kombi for the launch of UK fashion brand Top Shop’s new Gateway Theatre of Shopping store during the busy festive season when consumers are at their most receptive.

The incredibly tight brief from a timing perspective called for a Volkswagen kombi produced between 1965 and 1972 that was still in a working condition. The client required this specific model as they had used a similar one in the launch of their Johannesburg store and needed the same look and feel at the launch of the Gateway outlet.

Brandyourcar.com MD Pieter Groenewald says; “We’ve built up a massive database of more than 22 000 drivers across the country for mobile promotions over the past two years. This allowed us to meet this particular client’s brief on incredibly short notice by actually tracking down three of these very rare kombi models – one in Cape Town and two in Johannesburg.

“We’ve also developed excellent relationships with the drivers on our database which meant that the kombi’s owner was willing to travel to Durban and drive his own car, adding authenticity to the activation”.

As the promotion was in Durban, it was imperative that the rather old car could get there in one piece. This required a physical inspection and convincing the owner to convert his ‘classic’ for purposes of the campaign by re-branding it.

Besides this, there was the added pressure that the vehicle had to be branded in Johannesburg and then driven to Durban in time for the store opening. The clock was ticking and the car eventually departed the night before the promotion.

Given the kombi’s age it could only travel between 60 – 80km an hour and the driver had to call in hourly through the night to report on progress. Tow trucks were also on standby in Harrismith and Pietermaritzburg, in case their services were required! The kombi eventually arrived in Durban at 2:30am the morning and the activation started at 8am as planned.

“The kombi truly was the linchpin of the activation as it served as a base for promoters and transported them to various venues to promote the Top Shop opening. It also created excellent hype and truly ‘announced’ the arrival of the promoters at these different hot spots.

“Overall the use of the kombi was a huge success and it continues to draw attention wherever it goes’” reports Groenewald. “To be honest this campaign tested us beyond the norm, but in the end we pulled it off which confirms that brandyourcar.com is much more than just car branding. This is especially relevant when brands utilise the ‘multiplier effect’ of our drivers and their social networks”.

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