Volkswagen was launching the Golf Wagon in a tough climate.
After the worst of the global financial crisis appeared to be over,
most car manufacturers were still suffering from sluggish
The challenge facing VW was that it core audience regarded sport
utility vehicles (or SUVs) as the car of choicefor growing families
in need of space. VW wanted to establish the Golf Wagon as a
viable, fuel-efficient alternative to the SUV that had just as much
space inside. A target of 10,000 customer interactions was set as a
suitable number from which to generate meaningful sales leads.
VW required a communications strategy that broke the established
rules of car advertising. Rather than focus solely on the
functional benefits by listing features in traditional one-way
broadcast media VW wanted to capture the interest and imagination
of its audience enabling them to experience the car and benefits
Three insights shaped the communications strategy for the Golf
Wagon: Category, brand and consumer.
The category insight revealed that the car industry had in the
past focussed on the communication of a car's functional benefits
in traditional advertising. VW strategy had to defy category
conventions by entertaining in non-traditional
The Volkswagen brand has an irreverent and playful image (See VW fun
theory). Research indicated that people were more willing to
interact with Volkswagen than many competitor brands. VW strategy
had to leverage this untapped opportunity by creating a one-to-one
VW's target consumers possess a strongly entrenched belief that
SUVs offer more space than other cars, so VW had to convincingly
prove that the Golf Wagon was just a spacious, This idea not only
had to engage the potential buyer, but also for the kids they
were likely to have accompanying them.
One of the most popular games the target consumer (aged 35-45
years) played when they were young was Tetris. This shape
tessellation game was made world famous when it was distributed
free with Nintendo's Game Boy handheld gaming system.
VW chose to adapt the famous game and use it to showcase the
size of the Golf Wagon boot: Boot Tetris was born, as consumers
tackled the challenge of packing the Golf Wagon boot with giant
sized Tetris pieces in the quickest time possible.
Once VW brokered a licensing agreement with the creator of
Tetris in the United States and secured his approval for the
creation of Boot Tetris, Boot Tetris took over VW dealerships and
shopping centres. It ran in 71 Volkswagen dealerships across
Australia as well as a number of shopping centres that were
selected on the basis of their index against the target
A bespoke Boot Tetris installation accommodating a Golf Wagon was
created at each location. Each installation had a timing clock
installed which recorded the time it took for players to place all
22 pieces into the boot.
The installation included large screen LED TVs that displayed
bespoke digital creative and a number of promotional staff that
acted as game referees and captured leads from interested
consumers. There was also a leaderboard at each location that
displayed the ten quickest recorded times from that
The Boot Tetris campaign was extended online with the creation of
a microsite that informed consumers of where the tournament would
take place. This site also hosted a regularly updated
leaderboard with the fastest times at each location and overall.
The idea was also supported on Volkswagen's central
At the end of the tournament consumers with the fastest time won
prizes, which included an all expenses paid family weekend away in
a Golf Wagon.
The campaign overtook its engagement objectives by 61%, engaging
The microsite attracted 32,433 unique visitors.
The activation delivered 155 brochure requests, 430% more than the
Volkswagen exceeded its sales targets for the Golf Wagon by
The activity was shortlisted in the Festival of Media Awards 2011 in the following
categories: "Best Communication and Entertainment Platform"
and "Best Use of Creative Media".