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Nissan promotes X-Trail SUV with custom online store, social media campaign

Japanese car manufacturer Nissan is offering a unique promotion for consumers in its home country in promotion of its latest SUV model, opening a mobile-optimized store that features five products inspired by the vehicle.

The Nissan Xtreme Collection debuted earlier this week, and will be available for purchase on Amazon Japan for a limited period until February 28. A Nissan Xtreme Collection open campaign will also be launched on social media, where users will be able to share their product requests using the hashtag #XTREME until February 28.

“Gathering people’s input and inviting them to co-create the experience with the brand is most certainly not new, but it can be very effective,” said Michael Becker, managing partner at mCordis and The Connected Marketer Institute. “In fact, it should be a core principle on marketing to and with the connected individual.

“Many people want to be heard and be able to contribute, as long as the friction to do so is low.”

Xtreme Collection
The products Nissan is offering through its Xtreme Collection were were inspired from trekking and outdoor activities, and chosen in collaboration with professional athletes. The ethos behind the product offerings were based on the X-Trail “Tough Gear” concept, and Nissan describes them as “sourced from the far end of the earth.”

The online shop features 5 products aimed at recreating extreme environments anywhere, such as a rock to enjoy bouldering at home or water drums to recreate a waterfall, in keeping with the X-Trail’s touted high performance on a variety of difficult terrains.

The accompanying social media campaign allows users to pitch product they feel are also “sourced from the far end of the earth.” In order to apply, users can post their new product requests (in Japanese) until 5 PM on February 28 using the #XTREME hashtag on the Facebook, Twitter or Instagram.

New products that fulfill the logistic criteria will be examined to be added and sold on the store.

Additionally, a showroom will be open to Japan residents from January 19 to January 22 at the Nissan Global Headquarters, and the company released a video describing the campaign on YouTube.

All products in Nissan’s Xtreme collection have been authorized for sale with the guidance of the respective local and environmental organizations.

No “marketing moment”
Despite the campaign’s obvious commitment to creativity, there is no singular “marketing moment” that Nissan can use in its social media approach, meaning that the company will have to rely on the strength of its brand identity alone.

A brand successfully using a marketing moment to its advantage is Hershey’s which did so on two occasions: one, a social media campaign arising out of the negative reaction to its holiday Reese’s cups, and another based on a viral image of a note left by someone who stole a KitKat out of a Kansas State University student’s car (see story).

And Buffalo Wild Wings piggybacked off of another marketing moment, buoying its brand partnership with college football’s Citrus Bowl with a variety of social media activations (see story).

“With the material available in the press release and video there does not appear to be a compelling hook to engage and enable the viewer,” Mr. Becker said. “Perhaps the initial content is a teaser that Nissan will expand upon over time.

“They’ll need more content to grab and retain people’s attention and share of mind. For example, it will be interesting to see if they merge in physical media triggers, AR or VR immersive experience and other content, promotions and offers within the program.”