Instagram, Influencers Take Center Stage In Acura, Honda Efforts

Move over traditional media, American Honda is using Instagram influencers for two separate marketing efforts. 

Acura is supporting the launch of the ILX sports sedan by working with Instagram and GIPHY to launch the first-ever in-app vehicle customizer on Instagram Stories, where users can build a personalized ILX sports sedan from Acura’s Instagram handle.

There is an Acura-exclusive sticker-pack from GIPHY that Insta users can use to build their dream ILX, and Acura is also partnering with top GIPHY artists and influencers to amplify the program.

Honda is also leaning on influencers to help publicize the brand’s partnership with HGTV. The automaker hosted Instagram influencers and bloggers at the HGTV Dream Home last week for a dinner and a ride and drive program around nearby Glacier National Park. 

Instagram Stories is the fastest growing platform on social, with over 400 million daily active users, and GIPHY (which serves over 7 billion GIFs and Stickers across the web every day) is the exclusive provider of sticker distribution within Instagram. Acura will also repost some of the creations through the brand’s social channels.

To generate buzz and awareness among Instagram Stories users, Acura has collaborated with top Instagram influencers and GIPHY artists to create stories and stickers that incorporate the ILX.

Among the Instagram influencers participating in the campaign are artists Pablo Rochat (@Pablo.Rochat), who has 111,000 followers, and Sean Charmtz (@sean_charmatz), who has 892,000 followers. GIPHY artists who have collaborated with Acura on creating stickers for the ILX customizer include Lucy Turnbull (@Lucyturnbull) and Diesel raptor (@dieselraptor), each commanding over one billion views of their GIPHY stickers. 

Influencers who Honda is working with to highlight the Honda Pilot/HGTV connection include photographer Jeremy Cohen (@jermcohen), who has 139,000 followers on Instagram, family-focused poster Rachel Quenzer (@rachelquenzer) who has 289,000 followers, home design authority Annisa Zajac (@housesevendesign) who has 216,000 followers, and outdoor gear photographer Mason Strehl (@MasonStrehl) who has 62,000 followers. 

Acura ILX is the gateway vehicle to the brand, bringing in the most first-time Acura customers and youngest buyers. With the model capturing the highest number of millennial buyers in its segment, having a strong presence on social media platforms makes sense, says Jessica Fini, American Honda social media manager. The campaign was developed in partnership with Acura’s AOR, MullenLowe.

“Acura selected influencers who have a large Instagram and Instagram Stories presence that regularly used GIPHY stickers, and also with an audience aligned with the ILX target buyer,” Fini tells MediaPost. “We also used artists who created their own stickers for added reach and organic integration within the platform. Many of the artists we used have over a billion views of their GIFs on the GIPHY platform and are regularly trending.”

Research shows 60% of Instagram users are millennials, Fini says.

Honda for a third consecutive year is the exclusive automotive partner of the HGTV Dream Home Giveaway 2019. A 2019 Honda Pilot Elite joins the giveaway as part of greatest prize package in HGTV history, valued at more than $2.3 million.

Honda will produce a 30-second custom vignette showcasing the Pilot and invite viewers to enter the sweepstakes The creative concept for the vignette showcases how both the HGTV Dream Home 2019 and the Pilot are built for families who enjoy different types of adventure. The campaign was developed in partnership with Honda’s AOR, RPA.

The redesigned Honda Pilot Elite will also be integrated into the HGTV Dream Home 2019 TV special on Jan. 1, which showcases the construction and design of the home.

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