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Maintaining digital marketing has paid dividends during lockdown, says Kia

Kia e-Niro

Kia has seen web traffic increase by 30% year-on-year after continuing to invest in digital marketing during the lockdown.

David Hilbert, Kia UK marketing director, told AM that while some brands put marketing spend on pause during the crisis, the Korean manufacturer’s strategy was always to continue investing.

Kia also continued with its TV advertising for its e-Niro campaign with Robert De Niro, while again, other rivals put spend on hold.

Hilbert said: “As a result we had a greater share of voice in April and May and that’s really worked for us ahead of dealerships reopening in June.

“The e-Niro has seen a 460% surge in interest year-on-year and I think the lockdown has focussed customers’ minds on looking for more environmentally friendly driving.”

Kia is planning to launch 11 EVs globally by 2025, with dedicated models for the European market.

The first of Kia’s next-generation EVs will be introduced to Europe in 2021, constructed on a unique platform specifically engineered to accommodate an EV powertrain.

It will offer a crossover design, a range of more than 300 miles and a sub-20 minute charging time.

While pent up demand can explain the increase in new car registrations in July, Hilbert also put Kia’s 28% year-on-year increase performance partly down to the investment in brand awareness.

Some manufacturers have marketed the fact they are able to offer payment holidays and putting post-lockdown deals together, Hilbert said Kia’s strategy is just to focus on confidence in the product.

He said: “We’ve invested in our brand power, awareness and the product and less about customers looking for a deal.

“We still want to get customers into cars and dealerships with the safety measures we have in place. That’s been our focus.”

Kia is currently rolling out live chat and video technology across its dealer network to help retailers better interact with customers in a way they prefer. 

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