What does it take to get a bike-riding Brooklyn urbanite to buy an Audi A3? Executives at Audi think craft beer and cutting-edge music will help market the Audi A3. Will bacon donuts and and microbrews really bring the buyers in?

That’s the hope, as Audi sent a 64-page primer to its 280 American dealers to help them plan a launch party for the entry-level A3, a car aimed squarely at people in their mid-20s to 40s. The package never specifically refers to hipsters, though it recommends playing hipster-centric bangs like Chvrches and sourcing local organic food and microbrews.

So who is Audi aiming for? According to the primer;

The A3 target consumer is cool, young and urban and looking to upgrade from their non-premium sedan into an Audi, as well as other A-segment consumers who are attracted to the Audi brand.

The pre-launch party event is planned for April 3rd, and salespeople are encouraged to invite friends and colleagues to check out the new Audi, while offering unfiltered wine and beer. Apparently that’s another hipster thing? The whole farm-to-table restaurant appeal is also mentioned in the packet, as well as marketing the A3 as “uncompromised luxury” to a generation which refuses to “sell out,” whatever that means.

Yet you’ve got a multi-billion dollar luxury carmaker blatantly trying to appeal to a generation that can see through any marketing attempt. Just tell us about the car, and why it’s awesome, and stop trying to make it into some sort of lifestyle statement. If nothing else, most of my generation see cars as just another tool. Marketing it as anything more? Meh. It seems like wasted effort to me.

It’s not that people won’t show up for the free beers and food, or to even check out the new Audi A3. Heck, some of them might even buy one eventually. Realistically though, most will still drive home in their 20-year Volvos and electric bikes while pining over the Tesla Model S.

It all just feels so forced and silly. Instead of a silly launch party (which is one of the oldest marketing ploys out there. by the way), why not develop a program that lets potential buyers take the car home for a day or two?

Here’s how Audi could sell me and my friends an A3. I come in on a Thursday, drop off my old beater and take a fully-loaded loaner home for the night. On Friday night I come back in, friends in tow, and that’s when you have the craft beers and fancy food. It’s a lot harder to get back into that old Volvo once you’ve spent the day wowing friends and family with that fully-loaded A3, and studies show that Millennials are using rental cars as a sort of extended test drive. So why not make that extended test drive a dealer option?

Because Audi isn’t planning on selling many A3s to young people. Instead, they want us to dream of one day owning their car. SO maybe, one day, down the road when the economy doesn’t suck and all the Baby Boomers are retired/dead, MAYBE THEN we can own…an entry-level compact luxury car.


Source: Automotive News