Launching a daring SUV to a new target group

In 2016 Toyota launched a brand new crossover SUV, the Toyota C-HR. The new model was aimed at young 26-40-year-old urbanites – an entirely new demographic for Toyota.

Our goal was to position Toyota as a cool and relevant brand to the target group without simultaneously involving Toyota’s existing fan base and risking they thwarted our efforts.

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Process & Approach

We knew that the young urbanites did not want to be told what is cool – they want to find out for themselves. Also, they have a distinct fear of missing out. Therefore, we designed a campaign flow with two phases:

A mystery phase to build audiences and a conversion phase, utilizing our gathered audiences.

Phase one

In the mystery phase, we produced and released a film of urban and nature lifestyle situations, along with a motivational voice-over. We added a timer to the film – this was a consistent element in phase one.

It counted down for 25 days without telling why. We were spreading the countdown only in niches where our target group was; including fashion magazines, relevant outdoor media and influencer Instagram posts.

As the timer ran out, we displayed the final hours of the countdown in places where we knew the target group would notice.

Finally, we held an event at the harbor front with hand-picked influencers and the first C-HR on Danish soil. When the timer ran out, our website began taking orders for the C-HR.

Phase two

The website was only accessible via specific C-HR related codes. We began releasing codes via all channels, targeting the gathered audience. The codes had a usage limit, to cultivate the ongoing hype and tap into the target group’s fear of missing out. The fact that you could order a car online was another testament to just how radical the campaign was.



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In total, we made over 4.500.000 impressions, during the campaign period. The campaign website saw a 54% increase in visitors throughout the first 24 hours of the release. We met our ambitious goal, as the 100 very rare First Edition C-HRs were steadily being claimed.

And, because we used specific codes for specific media, we could track which media had the best conversion rate – across both online and offline media. More than 4.500 within the target audience typed in a password on the site, and 75% of the pre-orders were driven through social and digital media.