A Complimentary Brand Project – facebook Fanwagens by Volkswagen

branding agency

Check the ‘fanwagen T1’ and ‘fanwagen Beetle’
In a great piece of complimentary brand leverage, Volkswagen in the Netherlands have created an integrated marketing campaign by hooking up with the facebook brand. The fanwagens are one-off, facebook-themed vehicles produced by Volkswagen of the Netherlands. This great piece of brand communications was created as part of an integrated advertising campaign undertaken by Volkswagen in the Netherlands. More than 33,000 people got involved in the competition, voting online for which model they wished to be built, and entering to be the lucky winner of the final, limited edition fanwagen vehicle. (More detail and pics after the jump).
Some features of the car have been replicated to reflect uniquely facebook-related functionality. On its dashboard, the ‘fanwagen’ features the ‘feed-o-matic’, a device that prints the last ten posts of a user’s news feed at the push of a button. A small panel beneath the rear license
plate showcases the driver’s relationship status, rotatable via a small scroll wheel. The car will be delivered to the winning participant along with a map already marked with the locations of all of his facebook friends.

Other aspects of the cars are playful reinterpretations of standard features. the horn is replaced by the ‘poke’ button, ‘made to grasp the attention of other drivers’. The door handles of the vehicle are labeled with ‘add friends’, while a bulletin board ‘wall’ on the side doors of either model lets users leave ‘posts’ and even photos using the included instant camera. The ‘inbox’ (glove compartment) offers a way ‘to store all of your private messages’ with the instruction, ‘to remove a message, take it out of the inbox’.

The user’s manual for the ‘T1 fanwagen’ document the three privacy settings of the vehicle: ‘all’ (window shades pulled open), ‘friends only’ (curtains at halfway), and ‘only me’ (pulled completely shut). both cars feature a ‘chat mirror’ (rearview mirror) for ‘live chat with friends in the backseat: look into the chat mirror to see available friends, and select a specific friend by adjusting the angle of the mirror’.

brand developers


We’re big fans ourselves of complimentary brands leveraging the equity of another to connect with their customers. In this case Volkswagen have captured the spirit of facebook, and in our opinion created as close to the perfect integrated brand communications promotion as you’d ever wish to see.

Dave Ansett, Brandamentalist
Creator of Brands with Fans

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