THE TOYOTA CHALLENGE.
At the 2014 Consumer Electronics Show, North America was first introduced to the Toyota FCV (fuel cell vehicle). Then in June at the 2014 Aspen Ideas Festival, the automaker revealed for the first time the exterior of a fuel-cell sedan that will be available for purchase in 2015 – first in Japan, then Stateside. The hydrogen- powered car will offer an impressive range in terms of distance per charge, as well a re-charging speed equal to the time it takes to re-fuel a regular car. It is the next generation of auto technology and boasts greater efficiency than any previous offering.
Toyota’s commitment to fuel cell goes well beyond the launch. It is investing in the hydrogen fueling station infrastructure needed to support the public’s adoption of this new technology. The rollout will begin in California, where adoption rate for green technology is high and government support is strong, but challenges abound. While auto manufacturers, local government, and infrastructure developers understand the importance of hydrogen as a fuel and what it means for the future, numerous key audiences still require proper education on what fuel cell really means – for everyone.
The task is to create a campaign that helps launch the Toyota FCV ahead of its availability in the US next year. A vital element will be an emphasis on educating the public not only about the value of the vehicle itself, but also about hydrogen fuel-cell technology and why it’s a good choice for them. It’s also important to position Toyota as a leader in the cutting-edge of fuel-cell development and execution as compared to its competitors.
For the entire challenge and official competition rules and information from PRWeek, click here.
With a consumer base less-than-trusting of fuel cell technology and alternative fuels, the challenge ultimately resides in educating the general consumer about how fuel cell technology works and what Toyota is doing to develop it.
Beyond the general consumer, this campaign focuses on strategic ways to reach political officials - decision makers - with information about the Toyota Mirai and fuel cell technology, plus what a system of networks would look like in each state.
Through unorthodox media relations, brand partnerships and social media, this campaign created individualized and strategic opportunities for consumers and political officials to experience the technology and the Toyota Mirai.