Toyota: Launching the Toyota Camry via social media — Live from Member Meeting 34

Coverage of this session by Courtney Graham of Connect with her on LinkedIn here.

3:50 —'s Brian Parks introduces Toyota's Director of Social Media, Monica Peterson.

3:51 — How did Toyota integrate social into the launch of the 2015 “bold new” Camry. They started with research.

Camry is the top mid-size sedan in America, so things can be boring when you're overly popular. The campaign was to overcome that perception.

3:53 — Campaign objectives, socially and overall:

  • Increase opinion/consideration
  • Increase awareness of redesign
  • Increase perception of Camry image and styling

3:54 — Social media strategy across platforms

  • Use data to hyper-target content
  • “High-five” shoppers considering Camry
  • Entertain & inform active considerers
  • Deliver an unexpected take on traditional Camry

3:56 — Social media strategy: Toyota is always looking for test and learn opportunities. They find opportunities where people are doing things naturally and organically and optimize those in the campaigns.

3:58 — Monica: We created data-driven creative ads that target three audience sub-categories. We then cross-matched with campaign tonality, product differentiation, available third-party data. We had 162 creative permutations for three-month period.

3:59 — Monica says they maximized influencer content by leveraging YouTube influencers and the co-created content that fit with influencer talent. Their goal was to get influencers to take content and have them share it in their channels. They watched it take off and then amplified with paid media.

4:01 — Social engagement: Toyota gave Twitter “high fives” to current owners, recent purchasers, etc. They highlighted the bold choice in the content.

4:03 — Monica talks about Snap 21, a social sharing pilot that some of the dealerships are using to highlight sales. Dealers would take a picture of a customer that can then be shared by the new Camry owners. She says it helped raise awareness of the bold new Camry and increase the effectiveness of the campaign.

4:05 — Their results for paid influence: Right now they are trending toward three-times greater interaction rate and almost twice the lift in favorability in Camry images. They're also trending five times the lift in Camry perceived as stylish.

4:06 — Monica: For social engagement, it was important to staff to have alignment with departments like marketing and customer service.

4:08 — Monica: The Snap 21 effort is trending toward a 28 percent sharing rate of photos.

Q & A:

Q: How did your team handle and execute the 162 permutations in three months?

A: Monica: Our agency was a big factor in the creation, and they had a great tool. They had to go through legal as well for a lot of approval and involved them in the process.

Q: Based on your learning, how would you make the case for adding more staff to your campaign team?

A: Monica: We used a command center to look at conversations and volume, utilizing the data from that makes it an easier sale. We also utilize our agency for additional support especially for listening and response. It may mean that you have to push your agency more for help. It also means you have to fight more internally, and sometimes you have to get creative.

Q: What was the time frame for the YouTube video promotions?

A: Monica: We promoted it through paid promotion and then teased out some of the content. It varied and depended on how well the content was being shared.

Q: How did you connect purchase data with the campaign?

A: Monica: We utilized the command center, and it's driven by a proprietary tool that brings in CRM data. Also, we used data from conversations with purchasers and potential buyers.