One of the things I always found interesting from a marketing perspective with regards to Formula 1, is that the former owners relied on race promoters, teams and their sponsors to do much of the heavy lifting when it came to marketing of the sport.
To its credit, it didn’t need to do much more to garner 500 million viewers per year but I still found that interesting when viewership began to wane. I always thought F1 could use some marketing of its own and now that seems to be the case for the new owners, Liberty Media.
In its first-ever global marketing campaign, F1 has release a 1-minute video promoting the upcoming season starting in Melbourne Australia. Here is the press release:
The new campaign premieres ahead of the season opener on 25th March, with bold new imagery, a new tagline and a hero film which features six of F1’s biggest super fans.
The 60-second film, released on F1’s social channels on Friday 16th March at 9am GMT, shines a spotlight on the innovation, endurance and elemental nature of the sport, putting superfans at the visceral heart of the action, as though they are the ones battling it out from behind the wheel.
Inspired by the thrilling dance between chaos and control that draws fans to F1, the outtake is Engineered Insanity, the juxtaposition of two opposing forces which make Formula 1 unique; formidable engineering coupled with a no limits mindset.
Engineered Insanity, also the new tagline, forms the backbone of a multi-platform campaign that kicks off in Melbourne with high impact out-of-home advertising, featuring proximity in-airport and in-city posters, hand-painted murals and extending to extensive social and digital channels. It will then roll out to appear in key Grand Prix destinations in China, France, Germany, USA as the season unfolds.
The film’s stars were chosen for their indomitable love for the sport, but also represent the diversity of the Formula 1 fan base. The six fans were subjected to heat, wind and rain in a specially constructed wind tunnel, experiencing first-hand the heart stopping drama of the race.
As the season advances, a new master edit will be cut, documenting how the real action unfolds, and released following each Grand Prix.
Ellie Norman, Director of Marketing, Formula 1 said:
“We want to create a perceptible shift in how people perceive F1. This campaign switches the focus away from our own echo chamber, instead spotlighting why our fans love this sport. Our brief to Wieden+Kennedy London was to translate its raw, exhilarating thrill into something that will transcend its appeal across the entire spectrum of sports fans. Last season, we made a promise to our fans to bring them closer and to reshape the sport into something that resembles what they want to see, the gladiatorial conflict at its heart. Nothing we came up with creatively delivered this better than seeing it through the eyes of our most passionate fans. Across the next year and beyond, we will be creating further fan-centred activations at the races, at fan festivals and across F1 social platforms. Watch this space. We are here to excite.”
The Fan First mentality doesn’t only extend to including fans in the film: they – are going to be actively engaged in the roll-out of the campaign as it gains momentum globally. This will start with the superfan stars being given the chance to tease the campaign first via their own social channels.
The visual language of the campaign will be put into the hands of the broader community of fans through a series of GIFs and interactive Insta stories that enable the viewer to unleash the campaign by tapping through the story.