Thursday, November 17, 2016

Six Branding Tips from the LA Auto Show

If you're a car fan and ever find yourself in the Southern California area during November, make a detour and head directly to the Los Angeles Convention Center to attend the LA Auto Show. Whatever make or model you think you'll like, you're sure to be surprised by the latest technological advances by your favorite brand's competitors. And just wait until you see the concept cars! I got a sneak peek at this year's show and immediately associated brand marketing with my observations. Check out these six branding tips that any brand can apply in any industry.

The hashtag for the event was featured on a large sign at the entrance (#LAAutoShow) - inviting attendees to use it and/or take a photo for easy sharing - and easy promotion.
BRAND TIP: In today's social era, choose your hashtags strategically and invite your audiences, customers, and stakeholders to embrace and use them.

Audi's full line-up of vehicles was presented mostly in red. In previous years, all Audi vehicles were silver.
BRAND TIP: Shake things up if you consistently use the same colors in your promotions. Use different color palettes for your brand storytelling.

Nissan launched its new Rogue One with storm troopers. Created in partnership with George Lucas' next Star Wars movie (a Nissan rep said that there are 131 million Star Wars fans in the USA), 5,000 limited edition vehicles will be available. Each buyer will also get a replica storm trooper helmet, a perk that will not be sold separately.
BRAND TIP: If your brand can tie itself to a pop culture phenomenon, do it!


Hyundai launched a new sub-brand named Genesis. Three sedans were featured, and by 2020, the Genesis line will include six vehicles including two SUV's.
BRAND TIP: Sub-brands or brand extensions allow your brand to reach out to new audiences.

Volvo offered access to its online newsroom via a business card with a QR code. While many influencers in social media have long said that QR codes are dead, this one, when scanned, linked to a special website featuring press releases, vehicle images, videos, and media kits.
BRAND TIP: Don't discount technology if it helps to promote your brand - and even better, use it if it provides the right information to the right people.

On the eve of the LA Auto Show, Edmunds, the leading car information and shopping network, posted a Tweet that highlighted a feature of the Lincoln MKX while simultaneously addressing a timely news story. See the Tweet below.
BRAND TIP: Follow the news and align your social media with stories that everyone is talking about. You never know when something you post will go viral. Remember Oreo's Tweet during the 2013 Super Bowl?

Image Credit: Twitter

Many trade shows and special events offer excellent branding tips that can be applied in different industries than they were intended, so be on the look-out. In the meantime, if you'd like to see more about the LA Auto Show, visit the website at

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