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Wearisma and Hearst Launch ‘The State of UK Automotive Influence’

Posted by on May 29, 2019

The automotive industry is without a doubt one of the UK’s key sectors. As with any industry, technological advancements and changing socio-political interests has impacted the landscape of the automotive industry. Last week marked the launch of ‘The State of UK Automotive Influence’, a joint white paper between Hearst and Wearisma. This report provides never-before-seen insights detailing how influencers can help to kick the UK automotive industry into fifth gear.

Download the whitepaper here, or read on to find out more.

The automotive industry is without a doubt one of the UK’s key sectors. As with any industry, technological advancements and changing socio-political interests has impacted the landscape of the automotive industry. Last week marked the launch of ‘The State of UK Automotive Influence’, a joint white paper between Hearst and Wearisma. This report provides never-before-seen insights detailing how influencers can help to kick the UK automotive industry into fifth gear.

In the heart of London, the launch was attended by key figureheads in the UK automotive industry from big names such as Lamborghini and Ford. Hearst’s CEO James Wildman opened the event with an impactful comment on the collaborative nature of the media market. Wildman detailed the numerous ways that print and social media can join forces to create truly engaging content. This provided an excellent segway to Wearisma’s founder and CEO Jenny Tsai to introduce the current landscape of the automotive influencer industry.

Automotive influencers generated the joint highest engagement rate (7.4%) across all influencer categories in Q1 2019

The rate of digital disruption occurring in the UK means that most Millenial and Gen Z customers only see automotive brands on social media. While automotive influencers only constitute 1% of UK Influencers, our analysis revealed that they generated the joint highest engagement rate (7.4%) across all influencer categories in Q1 2019. Although the automotive influencer space is niche, its audience is incredibly switched-on and active with a keen interest in supercars. 89% of automotive influencer content is about supercars and the report revealed the Top 20 most popular supercar brands among UK Influencers in this period.

Despite this absorption, Tsai explained that mass market car brands can grasp the opportunity to grow in this space by using lifestyle influencers. Tsai said that there are 24 times more lifestyle influencers than automotive influencers and often lifestyle influencers are the right content creators to be collaborating with if brands are trying to connect with the every-day consumer eg. parents looking to buy their first car. The report showcases some successful case studies where mass market brands have used lifestyle influencers to connect with consumers interested in buying a mass market car as opposed to car enthusiasts already embedded in the Lamborghini lifestyle.

Still, a few members of the audience pondered how an industry with such high-priced products can utilise influencer marketing in the same way as say the beauty or fashion industry. Tsai explained that the value of influencer marketing doesn’t solely lie in sales. Influencers can be used as a tool to create conversations, to educate consumers and to inform conversations surrounding advancements in the automotive industry such as sustainability. Surprisingly, our data revealed that conversations around electric vehicles from UK influencers were minimal. Tsai also explained that the way that ride-sharing services like Uber monopolise organic conversations on social media can present as a threat to the automotive industry if it doesn’t elevate its position in the influencer space.

Tsai wrapped up her presentation with a revelation of Wearisma’s Automotive Ones to Watch. In this section we outlined the three types of influencers that automotive companies should use. What works for a luxury brand won’t be the same for mass market manufacturers.

To find out more about these influencers and read the report in its entirety, download the white paper now.