Reverse Test Drive

Client: Skoda / Agency: DDB Sydney / Director: Armand De-Saint De Salvy

Skoda was a relatively unknown brand in the Australian market with less than 1% share. And when it was competing with well-established premium, European brands, getting people to even consider test-driving a Skoda was proving to be a tough ask. 

In 2016 we were tasked with launching the pinnacle model of the Skoda brand, the Superb. It had design and technology features that – in terms of real quality – rivalled far more expensive cars in the category.

Based on the insight that more than ever before, people were defining themselves through the brands they wear and carry. Not to mention the brands they drive.  We wanted to position the new Skoda Superb as the choice for the discerning, who could look past a brand name and judge a car purely on its merit – rather than the prestige of its logo.

We created the Reverse Test Drive sales activation where for one day the tables were turned – the car judged the drivers rather than the other way around.

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Using hidden cameras, we responded to participant’s comments about the car in real-time making them reconsider their brand bias and rethink the criteria they were using to judge the car.

We looked for a media approach that would get the broad reach the brand couldn’t usually afford in above the line media. That’s why we turned the traditional new model Test Drive day into a memorable brand experience that would be shared online.

The campaign began with the Reverse Test Drive activation, where a number of unsuspecting participants had their encounter with our judgmental Sat Nav. People’s reactions during the activation were later turned into a film for facebook that was targeted into the newsfeeds of relevant, potential customers.

The buzz generated by The Reverse Test Drive was overwhelming, generating conversation and positive sentiment from prospective Skoda buyers. The film created out of the activation delivered more than 1.3m video views on facebook, 4k shares and an average video engagement time of 31 seconds.



noah.regan@gmail.com