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Harley-Davidson’s outreach to rockers in India [GALLERY]

COMPANY:
HARLEY-DAVIDSON

EVENT:
HARLEY ROCK RIDERS SEASON IV

DATE:
8 AUGUST – 12 OCTOBER 2013

LOCALE:
INDIA

EVENT OBJECTIVE:

To support the rock music culture in India by providing a platform for upcoming bands to showcase their talent in front of large audiences.

EXECUTION:

Music is an integral part of Harley-Davidson’s culture and the Harley Rock Riders event was part of the brand’s aim to connect with a younger crowd by showcasing young and upcoming bands on stage.

“This event goes beyond just music and is an introduction to the Harley-Davidson lifestyle for our young audience,” Pallavi Singh, marketing lead, Harley-Davidson India said.

The Harley Rock Riders was an open entry event where people could download passes from the Harley-Davidson India website and the India Facebook page to attend the event.

Harley-Davidson made use of a 360-degree marketing campaign to promote the event. This included a traditional PR campaign where event listings and band profiles were created to drum up interest of the event in the local press.

Media and online influencers were also invited for all events to enable post event buzz that would carry momentum until the next event. Social and print advertising, electronic direct mailers, radio spots, on ground promotions were executed at places like Hard Rock Cafés in Mumbai where Harley-Davidson motorcycles were placed, as well as colleges and “hang-out joints” frequented by the young.

This was a six-city tour that saw music and motorcycle enthusiasts and members of the Harley Owners Group turn up for the event across Pune – Hard Rock Café, Kolkata, Ahmedabad – Indian Institute of Management, Cochin – Bolgatty Palace, New Delhi – Hard Rock Café and Mumbai – Mehboob Studio.

The six cities were chosen based on research done by the brand which showed high interest levels and where the brand could connect with the audiences from these cities.

Live updates were done on social media for people who were not present at the event.

The brand introduced a “Find Your Freedom” contest on Facebook where it invited Indian rock musicians of all experience levels to participate by submitting an original composition based on the theme of Freedom.

Three finalists performed at the Grand Finale in Mumbai where one winner was named Harley-Davidson Band of the Year 2014. The band will perform at the European Bike Week 2014 in Austria.

Entries streamed in from 119 bands from across the country and close to 80,000 votes were cast by fans.

There were photo booths, Harley-Davidson stalls where fans could buy the latest merchandise as well as a special “Harley Parking Only” area where fans and enthusiasts could be up close to nearly a hundred Harley-Davidson motorcycles.

RESULT:

The event saw over 5,000 people turn up for the event.

On Facebook, Harley-Davidson reached over 17.3 million people and the total impressions generated were 13.9 million. The brand also generated 774 thousand units of engagement and added over 141 thousand new fans. 120 entries for the contest were received with over 80,000 votes obtained.

On Twitter, 237 unique authors mentioned the event with a combined reach and impressions of over 378 thousand and 1.1 million respectively.

There was also PR coverage across print, online, trade, electronic and international/regional media including The Times of India, Hindustan Times- HT City, Daily News & Analysis, The Indian Express.

LESSONS LEARNED:

One of the biggest challenges in organising the event was to sustain interest in the event as it spanned over three months.

“A focused PR campaign made sure that the press from each market had something unique to take away. This was done through band profile and spokesperson interviews exclusively given to the local media to sustain buzz from a PR standpoint,” Singh said.

“Online, the Find Your Freedom contest and live updates from all events made sure we stayed in conversation throughout and interest levels were high as we approached the Grand Finale in Mumbai,” she added.

The brand’s second challenge was to keep the event relevant for the hard core motorcycle enthusiasts.

“We decided to do the consumer unveil of the brand new touring motorcycle from Harley-Davidson, the Rushmore Street Glide, at the Grand Finale. Part of the communication leading up to the event had this as the core message. The motorcycle enthusiast also had lots to choose from once at the event – the Jump Start experience, the Harley-Davidson stall, photo booth and of course the 100 Harley-Davidson motorcycles present at the event,” Singh said.

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