Parsimony, Social Media and Drifting Porsches

Disclaimer: Hankook Tire is a client of Edelman in Seoul. However, that does not detract from the fact that this is a very cool piece of film!

What is interesting about this is that this is one of the comparatively few cases of a Korean company using international social media channels to promote the things it’s doing. There’s a lot of stuff happening in the online space in Korea – particularly on the Cyworld and Naver communities but, short of posting ads, I don’t see very much content on YouTube.

This particular piece of film was shot in July during a test for a drifting Porsche and later posted up onto YouTube, primarily to interest the drifting community. As can be seen from the comments, it has certainly reached its target audience and consequently raised the profile of brand. It’s a great example of how an item of content not necessarily created for promotional use can nevertheless be used to provide more context on what a company is doing behind the scenes.

Good communications is parsimonious in that it generates the maximum amount of use from resources at the lowest possible cost. Taking materials developed for internal use and review and using them for external communications via platforms such as YouTube is a great example of parsimony. Assuming, of course, that you don’t divulge trade secrets, the list of possible applications is almost endless – concept products, pop group rehearsals, product stress tests, trade show events – almost anything that is used for internal reporting purposes can be adapted for dissemination to an interested target audience. Think of the “bonus features” on the average movie DVD and the extent to which people – myself included- will watch footage of the production process shot on a hand-held video camera as a part of the whole movie experience.

Consumers and other stakeholders increasingly want to see the story behind the brand. The glitz and polish of classical advertising is giving way to grainy, home-made content that can be viewed online and shared between fellow enthusiasts. Korean companies typically spend enormous amounts of money on advertising to build brand awareness. Taking a parsimonious approach to communications has the potential to build awareness among important stakeholder groups without the heavy upfront expenditure required of a traditional advertising campaign.

And, if you’re interested, here are a couple more drifting Porsche videos. After all, there’s nothing wrong with shameless client promotion!

(Love the soundtrack on this one!)


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