Audi Uses Rich Media Ads in DoubleClick Studio to Build Brand Engagement for A3 Sportback

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Audi wanted to position its new A3 Sportback as a natural choice for those attracted to modern luxury. To achieve this, the team created a bespoke ad unit for tablets offering a range of functionalities and connecting the platforms where Audi is represented. As the ad was built in DoubleClick Studio, it could be designed without templates and individual actions could be tracked for performance. The ad achieved a positive unique user interaction rate of 18% and the cost per unique user interaction came to $0.07.

Approach
Created HTML5 rich media ad for tablets in DoubleClick Studio
Ran this reservation campaign on the Google App Network
Tracked using DoubleClick tools for maximum campaign insights
Goals
Stimulate deep brand engagement with new Audi A3 Sportback
Reinforce Audi’s slogan, “Vorsprung durch Technik” or "Progress through Technology"
Results
Unique user interaction rate was 18%, cost per unique user interaction was $0.07
On average, users spent about 30 seconds within the ad
Campaign drove more than 13,000 incremental video views on YouTube

Audi is a car manufacturer that's counted among the "German Big Three", a designation referring to the three best-selling luxury automakers in the world. This year saw the launch of the Audi A3 Sportback, which comes with a host of technical features, such as a new, powerful engine and lightweight components, making it the most advanced model yet. Inside, Audi Connect links the car to the driver's social accounts, to Google Earth and Street View, as well as to the latest news and online traffic updates.

Start your engines

Audi's slogan, "Vorsprung durch Technik" translates as "Progress through Technology". This applies as much to the technical solutions Audi cars offer as it does to the advertising that supports them. It was therefore important for the marketing team to create an ad that would position Audi as a leader in technology and reinforce the Audi A3 Sportback as a natural choice for customers interested in modern, up-to-the-minute luxury.

The starting point for the campaign was the car itself. "We have a unique quality product," says Christine Jelved, CMO, Audi Denmark. "Whenever people come to the showroom, the first thing they want to do is touch the car, they want to feel it." Thus, Christine and her team set about creating an ad campaign capable of translating the experience of a visit to the showroom onto a digital device.

Being 'Vorsprung durch Technik', we want to place Audi at the forefront of digital marketing, and we feel that this rich media ad for tablets achieves this.

"We wanted to give users an ad that gives them the possibility of interacting with their perfect car at home," says Audi Denmark's online manager Jacob Thiesen. The custom ad format enables users to complete a wide variety of actions within the unit: configure their favourite car, view it from every angle through a 360-degree spin mechanism, share with friends, discover more about the model through an image gallery, view selected video clips from Audi's YouTube channel, find their closest dealer to book a test drive, calculate leasing costs and request a quotation. Because the unit was produced in DoubleClick Studio, the ad could be designed without being tied to a template or specific functionality and these individual actions could be tracked for performance.

Audi used multiple Google products that enabled users to access the brand's YouTube channel and social pages, as well as the launch page for the Audi A3 Sportback within the ad unit. "It's natural to connect the media platforms in which we are represented," says Dan Bgsted Andersen, project manager at Audi Denmark IT. Not only does this give the best possible user experience, it also offers the added advantage of helping to drive performance on other platforms.

Get a move on

The team understood that a rich media ad on a tablet offered a great opportunity for deep, sustained engagement — more so than any other screen. "Today, 20% of all traffic at Audi.dk comes from tablet devices," Jacob reveals. "We believe when people spend time with our brand and with our cars in the tablet ad, this will lead to more sales in the long run." By working with great content and offering a unique experience, the engaging format was able to capture the user's attention and provide an exceptional branding effect.

Audi took the decision to promote its rich media ad on the Google App Network. This offers the perfect environment for advertisers who want to work with large, interactive ad formats and to reach users who are spending time on their tablets.

Ready to roll

With its wide variety of functionality, the ad has outperformed expectations. "Each visitor is completing lots of actions when they are in the ad," says Jacob. The numbers suggest multiple, long-lasting interactions rather than superficial engagements, with DoubleClick reports showing interaction rates of almost 1% for events several clicks away from the initial screen. "I think we're all a bit surprised at how much users interacted. At a low cost to us, they delved into even the deepest content," says Dan. "That's something we would be unable to achieve in a TV commercial."

Overall, the ad achieved a unique user interaction rate of 18%. Meanwhile, the cost per unique user interaction came to just $0.07. On average, users spent about 30 seconds within the ad and the campaign drove more than 13,000 incremental video views on Audi's YouTube channel.

What's the secret of Audi's success? "When you want to create a really engaging rich media ad, you must have the device and the user in mind," Jacob answers. Christine agrees and says: "Being 'Vorsprung durch Technik', we want to place Audi at the forefront of digital marketing, and we feel that this rich media ad for tablets achieves this."

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