#MarketingEventsAwards 2020 highlight: Porsche cruises through different decades to showcase legacy

Porsche is a renowned brand and with the launch of its Porsche 911, the automotive brand wanted to reinforce its brand positioning, and feature all Porsche 911 generations as part of the launch to build a legacy. At the same time, Porsche Asia Pacific wanted to establish and communicate the product highlights and unique selling points.

Together with event agency Visionnaire, Porsche worked on an event launch titled “The new Porsche 911 – Timeless Machine”, which targeted individuals from 30 to 60 years old who had high income. They were also divided into four personas – purists, maverick, extroverts, and perfectionists. The event led Visionnaire to win silver best consumer event – product launch/relaunch at MARKETING-INTERACTIVE’s Marketing Events Awards 2020.

Challenge

Porsche certainly has big ambitions for its event launch event. However, the journey towards a successful event is met with its own set of challenges. Visionnaire wants to ensure that it is able to create a memorable and iconic event for Porsche that not only inspires and engages all generations, as well as all 911 owners, but also propose a new format for the car unveiling. The agency also wanted to ensure that the show would emotionally engage the audience and immerse them into the 911 universe.

Strategy

The new Porsche 911 is both a reflection of the past and vision of the future. According to the automotive company, the new car is designed for purists, mavericks, extroverts, and perfectionists.

1. Purists: The ones who spent their youth dreaming of driving a 911 in full throttle or not.

2. Maverick: The unconventional independents who want to acquire a machine for the thrills of motor performance.

3. Extroverts: The confidence individuals who like to be seen with a dream machine.

4. Perfectionists: Individuals looking for the state-of-the-art in the flyline.

Time is also one of the main concepts of the event launch. According to Porsche, time is a fascinating concept about memory connecting everything that lies in the past and some statements will continue to reverberate into the future. The automotive company believes that memories and experiences mould individuals and build us.

Each generation and decade has its codes, inspirations, and generational pop culture. Through various references to pop culture, the journey was integrating the codes of each generation and speaking to the audience.

The three main codes are: colour codes, visual and graphic codes, and musical codes. Both Porsche and Visionnaire believed that a mix of all three will converge to unveil the “911 world changer” model of each decade. Additionally, the team also created event mood boards from the 1960s up until today.

For the launch of the new Porsche 911, the aim was to travel from the beginning in 1963 to the present in showcasing the different generations of the car. The codes comprise of different art influences, from music and paintings to arts and dances.

1. Visual codes: Pop culture influences, graphic influences, and blast of colours from the past.

2. Audio codes: A variety of entertaining key iconic sounds from the past decades.

3. Dance codes: Going along with the selected iconic songs and dance performances were also taking place.

According to the team, each period showcased was ultimately focusing on unveiling the key 911 model of each decade, under its own generation codes and artistic influence.

Execution

A team from Visionnaire comprising event directors, senior account managers, coordinators, visual designers, and scenographer spent five months working on and developing the event launch. The team had a mammoth task ahead of them, with 55 years of an iconic journey to be retraced in only 10 minutes via an iconic launch sequence. Additionally, Visionnaire, also had 10 models of Porsche 911 to feature.

To spice up the event launch, the team included a seven-piece professional live rock band named Supersonic, brought on board actor Lim Yu Beng to entertain guests, and had 16 professional dances with eight quick changes of attire. There were also 120 service staff on ground, as well as talent and technical crew to assist with the event.

The event launch starts with the time travelling protagonist played by Lim Yu Beng, who introduces to the audience that they are in a time machine. Lim then takes the audience on an immersive journey through the decades, where they witness the iconic generation codes – music, art, fashion, and culture.

The conceptualisation process involved multiple emotions, passions, and understanding of the past and present generations through the decades since the past 60 years. The aim of it was to change audience’s perspective and innovate the way in which cars are launched.

Visionnaire took on a unique approach to the event launch “Timeless machine”. Throughout the launch, it had performances and dancers on the main stage interacting with the cars as they moved. For the grand finale, live rock band Supersonic came out with a big bang for the final unveiling of the new models.

The main component of the experience was the development of the custom-made media content displayed on screens. The aim was to make it entertaining and dynamic yet informative, educative, and focusing on the key USPs of the new Porsche 911.

Results

Porsche invited 600 customers, partners, and media professionals for “Timeless machine”. According to Porsche, its total PR value was about SG$530,000 including social media coverage. The brand also used four Instagram hashtags for its event - #new911sg, #PorscheSG, #Porschesingapore, and #Timelessmachine. #Timelessmachine had the most number of posts on Instagram with 40,924. Meanwhile, #new911sg had 113 posts.

Overall, Visionnaire achieved its key performance indicators from the launch. These included:

- A successful market launch and announcement of the new 911 in the relevant target groups;  

- Consolidation of the positioning of the new 911 as the benchmark for every other sports car;

- Establishment of the product highlights;

- Incorporating a 911 generation display;

Capturing the awareness of a wider audience and emphasising that Porsche is a brand with a long-standing heritage; and

- An attendance rate of 80% out of the RSVPs.