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Case Study: MINI
When our relationship began in 2001, the aim was to help MINI punch way above its weight and make other car companies look like dinosaurs: lumbering behemoths out of step in a world led by nimble, quick-witted brands that weren’t afraid to act human and radically simplify. Fifteen years, six new models and millions of miles later, we’re proud to have played a major role re-introducing this iconic brand to America.
As W. Edwards Deming fans, we put data driven insights and a culture of “Test & Learn” at the heart of almost everything we do. From qualitative customer interviews and prototype testing to deep analysis of media and site metrics, A/B tests and 3rd party data such as Prizm (or even hundreds of thousands of DMV records) we help MINI make sense of a sea of numbers and efficiently drive the business forward.
By layering data sets, we’ve built key prospect profile sets that we continuously test and refine MINI messages against.
Our data analysis revealed an important audience being under-served by MINI advertising. So we created a CRM campaign specifically for that group and beat key benchmarks.
Matching buys against our customer profiles makes MINI’s media planning more efficient and effective.
A/B Messaging tests help determine which branded content should get more media dollars.
Knowing which audiences are the most receptive to which MINI models allows MINI’s media budget to punch above its weight.
Using highly-targeted Social ads as a testing lab helps us understand which messages will resonate with specific audiences.
For MINIUSA.com, our focus has always been crafting a simple but compelling User Experience that emphasizes crisp imagery over clutter and text – no matter what device a visitor is using. Built on the Adobe CQ/AEM platform, flexible components allow us to create, launch and A/B test new content quickly, and our Adobe systems expertise enabled us to execute a major site redesign and evolution to the MINI brand identity in 2016 with incredible speed and efficiency.
The site is continually one of the top-ranked in the industry and plays a central role in MINI’s brand building and lead generation efforts.
With customization a pillar of the MINI brand, the Configurator helps users design and save their ideal MINI from over 50 million possible combinations. But the simple, intuitive experience belies an underlying architecture that supports over 3,000 individual parts and model specific images, over 1,000 interconnected ordering rules, and robust server side scripts that generate customized hi-resolution images on the fly.
The Configurator is the top performing lead source for MINI and JD Power has rated the experience among the industry’s best for the past 15 years.
The “Slider Config” lets users quickly see different MINI designs before customizing one to their exact liking.
The in-dealership version of the Configurator is an iPad application protected by cases we custom designed and fabricated.
Stations within the dealership allow MINI shoppers to work side-by-side with Motoring Advisors to order their ideal MINI.
Whether it’s with email or direct mail, we do everything we can to transform mildly curious prospects into enthusiastic brand loyalists. That means understanding the shifting psychographics among various customer segments to generate effective conquest initiatives, optimizing multiple email streams for every stage of the customer journey, and a laser focus on generating leads and foot-traffic to dealerships.
A robust messaging strategy for each stage of the shopping funnel helps ensure MINI shoppers stay engaged with the brand.
Interactive Direct Mail help engagement rates surpass industry averages.
CRM streams are customized based on a shopper's primary model of interest.
To promote a brand with David-sized budgets going up against Goliaths, we need to zig when others zag and help people feel MINI’s distinctly human, non-corporate personality. This can lead to fairly unorthodox solutions for grabbing attention and giving people a reason to engage with the brand.
A server glitch led to a few hundred MINI Owners getting bombarded with MINI emails. Our incredibly fast, exceedingly human apology delighted Reddit users where it was the #1 story for an afternoon.
Our concept to transform idle time waiting in the supermarket check-out line into a low-cost, high-visibility media opportunity was named one of the Top Print Ads of the last 25 years by Creativity Magazine.
In honor of an event partnership with the iconic candy brand, we created a heart-warming tale of Easter motoring adventure.
Our monthly Photo Challenge lets owners show their creativity and while collecting valuable visual assets for MINI.
The MINI Lost & Found (a.k.a Prizing Program with Partners): after a mind-blowing test drive, people sometimes leave some great stuff in the MINI they were driving. This program helps get that great stuff.
Inspirational Content: we help brand fans embrace MINI's credo of living life to the fullest.
Of course, creating compelling experiences and delivering useful information to car shoppers is just half the story. We also architected, built and manage the robust infrastructure that ties all of MINI’s major platforms and data sources together, including TrakNet – our comprehensive tracking and analytics environment that unites all shopper interactions into a single profile.
Finally, we often play a key consulting role for MINI and BMW, helping make technical vendor selections and managing 3rd parties to keep data feeds and connected applications aligned. We also manage all lead data and communications between dealers, third party sites and BMW. This involves coordinating and collaborating with the three development teams who are responsible for dealer systems, dealer websites and internal BMW systems.
Adobe CQ/AEM: we built MINIUSA.com on top of Adobe's robust CMS. Adobe Target integration helps us continuously optimize performance.
Online channel conversion rates that exceed industry averages year-after-year.
A Harvard Business School case study.
Loads of awards, features in Newsweek and The New York Times and consistent rankings near the top of JD Power site reviews.
“Every now and again, a site will come along that makes you say ‘This is what the web’s all about.’ The coolest online experience you’ve had in months.” – USA Today