MINI is the diminutive car that's become a towering icon. But with seven models to promote, its advertising needs were complex. Producing, delivering and placing multiple assets for each of the models - as well as tackling the intricacies of MINI's demographic, seasonal, daypart, geo and price targeting - would require an intelligent, streamlined approach.


  • Increase campaign efficiency, flexibility and effectiveness
  • Reach users across devices and channels with rich media messaging


  • Produced dynamic creative using HTML5
  • Used single stack encompassing DoubleClick Studio, DoubleClick Bid Manager and DoubleClick Campaign Manager


  • Reduced placements required by 94%
  • Mobile click-through rate outperformed desktop by 0.89-0.97%
  • Cost per acquisition fell by 35%
  • Conversions shot up by 60%
May 2015

In order to deliver successful direct-response display ads online, the brand required close coordination among its agencies, including creative agency Iris, media planners Vizeum, iProspect for ad operations and the trading desk AMNET. MINI grasped the significance of shifting media consumption habits and therefore made it a priority to develop a creative solution that would reach consumers on mobile devices. In short, MINI needed flexible, efficient technology that would reduce the time in trafficking and building creative, enable real-time automation of price and image changes, and incorporate a process for automated retargeting.

From complexity to simplicity

Because HTML5 enables content to be synced across browsers and devices, MINI made the decision to abandon Flash and develop an all-HTML5 dynamic creative campaign. MINI used DoubleClick Studio, Google's production and workflow tool, to produce and manage beautiful rich media ads to run across all screens. This allowed its creative agency Iris to streamline processes and significantly reduce turnaround times.

Each ad was broken down by element, including call-to-action, images, headline and so forth. The next step was to create rules around which elements should show up to which groups of people, based on the audience insights around MINI's consumer segments. These new workflow efficiencies allowed easy tailoring of ad content, which meant MINI could be much more effective in audience buying and messaging.

The approach reduced the number of placements that needed to be created in DoubleClick Campaign Manager, which enabled a dramatic reduction in time spent on trafficking and managing the ads. In addition to a number of direct deals - which were also incorporated into the solution - MINI bought ads through DoubleClick Bid Manager, with inventory that spanned desktop, mobile web and desktop on mobile. The all-HTML5 strategy made using all these platforms effortless and allowed for more exciting and interactive creative.

MINI also activated DoubleClick's data pass, which eliminated heavy trafficking by connecting DoubleClick Bid Manager directly with the dynamic feed in Studio. This allowed quick updates to the campaign; MINI was able to execute pricing or creative changes - both real-time and scheduled - without having to create completely new assets.

Finally, to automate the retargeting and remessaging process, MINI set specific exposure rules in DoubleClick Bid Manager and used DoubleClick floodlight tags, which require no extra pixeling and deliver full control and transparency. For example, MINI could retarget past site visitors with messaging and images that corresponded to the model they had viewed on the website. Or, ad content could be tailored by model and offer according to the user's previous Google searches.

By creating an all-HTML5 campaign we knew that our creative could run anywhere, no matter where the consumer was. We took it one step further by adding in DoubleClick's Dynamic Creative to increase audience relevance, which worked really well for MINI.

- Fourie Du Preez, Deputy Creative Technology Director, Iris Worldwide

Gains in efficiency, flexibility, effectiveness

Since launch, the cost per acquisition - in the form of test drives and brochure requests - has fallen by 35%, while conversions have shot up by 60%. Crucially, the attention to mobile users has paid off, with the mobile click-through rate now outperforming desktop. The multichannel campaign has produced huge time and cost savings, along with clear targeting and messaging insights that have given MINI a powerful strategy for the way forward. The ad process was streamlined to the point where a campaign that had previously required numerous different creatives to be built now requires just one ad shell and four placements.

A key benefit has been transparent reporting that comes from employing a unified suite. Using strategic insights derived from this single-stack approach together with the ability to test extensively has shown MINI the way ahead, so the brand is already building out a bigger and better strategy for the future. MINI's agencies are coordinating updates to the messaging and building one master, super-dynamic shell for the rest of the year. MINI is also adding colour configuration using unique u-variable targeting through DoubleClick Campaign Manager, and building in dynamic gender targeting for even more effective messaging.