5.29.2013

Mercedes-Benz Offering Service Through Mobile

This morning, I'm quoted in an article posted on Luxury Daily about a new Mercedes-Benz mobile ad. My comments and summary are in bold.

Mercedes plugs new E-Class in mobile ads 
By Erin Shea

Mercedes ad on CBS News app German automaker Mercedes-Benz is boosting its new 2014 E-Class vehicles through two banner advertisements on the CBS News mobile applications.

A click-through on the ads takes consumers to a page where they can view details on the new E-Class vehicle. Mercedes is likely trying to reach the affluent followers of CBS by placing the ads on its mobile app, which is constantly updated with content.

“Through its long history and through programming including 60 Minutes, CBS News has attracted a sophisticated audience,” said Jeff Hasen, Seattle-based mobile marketing consultant.

“Likely many who have affinity for the brand have found it on mobile devices,” he said.

Mr. Hasen is not affiliated with Mercedes, but agreed to comment as an industry expert. Mercedes was unable to comment before press deadline.

Staying informed
As the CBS app is constantly being refreshed with new content, it is likely that many people would see the Mercedes ads since consumers are likely to check the app throughout the day to get the latest news.

Both ads contain a simple call to action and a small arrow that guide consumers to click on it.


One of the ads says “The automobile. E-volved” and the other one reads “The 2014 E-Class. Experience the E-Class.” Both have the Mercedes-Benz logo.

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A click through on the ad leads consumers to a pop-up screen that provides details about the E-Class vehicles.

The site reads “Explore the E-Class features below” and offers three choices, which are 577-horsepower, supercar performance and the 4Matic all-wheel drive.

Clicking on one of the choices brings up short facts about the vehicle at the top of the screen.

The site also includes a link to the E-Class page on Mercedes’ mobile-optimized Web site. A click-through on the link brings consumers to a landing page that shows off the E-Class sedans and lists their prices.


Through the mobile site, consumers can also view gallery images of the cars or visit Mercedes’ Twitter and Facebook.

Although the ads are likely helping Mercedes build awareness for its E-Class vehicles, consumers who are seriously interested may want to find out more.

“Yes, showing details or explaining why their cars are different or better than the competition is perfectly fine for a mobile-based ad,” said Roger Marquis, expert on print-to-digital technologies and author of 2D Bar Code Strategy, New York. “But my question is ‘What is the goal of the ad?’

“Maybe consumers are less interested in knowing the details of the car and more interested in purchase offerings,” he said. “This is what testing can bring out.”

Going mobile
Recently, Mercedes has increased its presence on mobile platforms.  

For instance, the automaker created an mobile-optimized Web site to provide on-the-go consumers with branded content and media.

After overhauling its Web strategy in 2012 to offer a magazine-style site, Mercedes optimized the platform for smartphone users. Luxury marketers are now more than ever looking to make their Web sites and multichannel campaigns accessible on mobile so that consumers have a seamless brand experience (see story).

Also, Mercedes-Benz Financial Services is boosting its customer service by offering its mobile app in new vehicles to help owners manage their accounts on the go.

The mobile app called My MBFS allows customers to manage their Mercedes-Benz account and finances from their mobile devices and now in their vehicles through the cloud-based infotainment system available in new models. Mercedes is likely looking to one-up its competitors to be the first auto finance company to offer this service in vehicles (see story).

“The automotive industry has had great early success with mobile, mostly from the manufacturers and dealers who are delivering personalization options – as in build your own car on your device – and current inventory for those who are inclined to visit a dealer for a test drive,” Mr. Hasen said.

“Apps are just part of the mobile solution,” he said. “Car manufacturers and other brands should give consumers choice on how to interact via mobile.”

In summary, there is one word that Ms. Shea mentions that I believe sums up the entire article, "service." Whether it's through the company's mobile ad, mobile optimized website, mobile financing app, etc., Mercedes is offering consumers and customers a variety of services that all point to making the experience between consumer/customer and brand memorable, lasting, meaningful and convenient. This all relates to the comments I made in a previous post about MaaS (Mobile as a Service).

With respect to my comment about, what's the goal of the ad, here I was just trying to look at the ad from the company's perspective. While it's great that they are embracing the mobile channel, and want to integrate it with others, I'm just wondering what the company is trying to accomplish by placing mobile ads versus any other, and if they are basing these mobile ads on testing that has been done.

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