Having already introduced its Passat and Jetta models in India, Volkswagen (VW) wanted to become the top-of-mind automotive brand in an increasingly crowded market with the launch of the Beetle, the Phaeton and the Touareg.
The concept was to have India 'wake up' to VW. To achieve this, the brand collaborated with DDB and The Times of India (TOI), the country's most widely- read English daily with almost seven million readers, to set up a 'roadblock'. It became the first brand to block book an entire newspaper. On 11 November, India woke up to VW with an unprecedented 9 and a quarter pages (5700 sq cm) across 16 editions of the TOI dedicated to the brand. The campaign spoke of the brand's long history of innovation and of its dedication to the Indian market.
On the day of the 'roadblock', the VW website recorded 70,000 page views and 'VW' was also the most searched term on Google. Within two days, 63 Beetles and 23 Touaregs were booked; To date, those figures have risen to 268 and 55 respectively. The campaign received extensive media coverage resulting in PR worth thousands of dollars.
This article was originally published as part of the 2010 Top 1000 Brands report.