Best Road Trip: VW @vw, Kimberley Gardiner – @KurtSchneider

Best Road Trip: VW @vw, Kimberley Gardiner – @KurtSchneider

Best Road Trip: VW @vw, Kimberley Gardiner – @KurtSchneider

Best Road Trip: VW @vw, Kimberley Gardiner – @KurtSchneider

Kimberley Gardiner, VW
& Kurt, @kurtSchneider

"We purposefully chose creators outside of the endemic auto category to create content that tapped into passion areas we knew would resonate well with our key consumer."
– Kimberley Gardiner, SVP marketing, VW

The future of driving is electric, but sometimes it takes an outside perspective to get the message across. So when VW launched its ID.4 electric vehicle, the carmaker didn’t turn to the usual auto influencers, or even auto-focused creators on TikTok. “We looked at TikTok as a platform to leverage massive audiences across food, music, and science, reaching our target consumer in an unexpected way," Gardiner says. Musician Kurt Schneider created a song from the car’s chimes and other sounds. “I've pretty much been making music inside a car ever since I was a kid hitting everything I could see, so honestly it was perfect,” Schneider says. “I have a bunch more silly ideas that I want to bring to life and an infinite world of sounds around me, so I can't wait to share all those future videos with the world on TikTok!” It was the brand’s first-ever campaign to run with no traditional media buy to support it, instead focusing on TikTok’s fullscreen TopView ad slot that runs when the app first opens. In 24 hours, it hit 65 million impressions, pushing VW to immediately enlist the platform for the launch of its Taos SUV.

"Anything that makes sound can be turned into something musical. Whether it's our washer and dryer (which me and my friend Jason ended up playing on Jimmy Fallon thanks to our TikTok video!), pots and pans, or a car, I feel like I'm able to bring that music to life on TikTok."
– Kurt Schneider

Q&A with Kimberley Gardiner,

SVP Marketing, VW Did you expect to have such a widespread impact on the community?

We had a feeling our strategy would land well on the platform but didn’t quite expect the response. The TopView video featuring Kurt Schneider was so well received that we ran it as a VW TV spot during the NBA finals!

How did you find the right creators?

The key was to start with the creator and what they do well, rather than starting with the car. By utilizing this creator-led approach, it allowed us to put the focus on what their audience cares about and, in turn, integrate the ID.4 in a more authentic way. This allowed us to genuinely blend the vehicle positioning into the content. TikTok provided the perfect canvas to create captivating work together.

How important was it to spotlight diverse voices?

In short, very important. The ID.4 is the electric vehicle for everyone, so we wanted to develop a plan that captured that sentiment—from the creators we chose to the audience we wanted to connect with. Bringing an electric vehicle to the masses means making it approachable and relatable to a diverse audience.

"As an avid TikTok user, I love the optimistic, authentic, and highly creative nature of the platform."
– Kimberley Gardiner, SVP Marketing, VW