The Content Imperative
The latest on content marketing strategy, insights and trends

Alex Barfield
Senior Planner

Alex is Senior Planner at Headstream. He ensures that all work takes a long-term view and is optimised based on business and client requirements. His work comprises research and insight, content strategy, data analytics and paid social.

Alex works across all Headstream clients on national and global accounts including BBC, GSK, National Trust, FatFace and Schuh.

Before joining, Alex worked at Universal Music.

Other posts by Alex

Image source: Dk58 - Renaud

Stories could get Millennials interested in cars again [research]

| 7 July 2015

With all the studies and evidence that the decline in car ownership is being led by millennials, it’s little wonder that car brands are looking for ways to get these key younger demographics interested in the automotive world. And it may well be that brand storytelling is the answer.

Our latest research into attitudes around storytelling among 2,000 UK consumers (see link below) showed that when asked what type of online content they most want to see specifically from automotive brands, the most popular response overall was discounts and special offers – selected by 43 percent.

However, a third of customers (32 percent) want humorous, dramatic or heart-warming stories, making it the second most-popular choice overall. And most importantly, storytelling ranked at the very top, even ahead of discounts, among millennial groups (18-24 and 25-34-year-olds, with 48 and 44 percent respectively).

This isn’t a colossal surprise. Millennials are marketing savvy: they’re eschewing gimmicky competitions and offers in favour of great entertainment that resonates with them.

Our study also found that automotive customers are just as likely to want to see content produced by their peers as material made by the brand itself: 49 percent prefer user generated content (UGC) while 51 percent want to see content created directly by car manufacturers and/or dealers.

Car brands and dealer groups are beginning to grasp just how important storytelling can be, but there’s a lot more that they can do to engage both current and future customers. One of the key areas they need to explore further is advocacy content – getting their customers themselves to tell the stories of why and how they bought that particular car, why it’s worked so well for them and why they’d buy from that manufacturer again.

That’s the type of content most likely to resonate among millennials, who’ve been brought up on similar stories told by brands in other sectors.



Auto brands & brand storytelling [research] from Headstream