MemberDecember 6, 2021 at 6:53 pm
Here’s the Lucid Air Marketing’s first definition at who they are:
Aptera has had several “coming soon” marketing pieces, and they all kind of adhere to this Lucid Air type of fetishization of the lines, the movement of the vehicle, the technology, etc.
For now, this is presentation of the car/technology is great. It can continue, as there is ample technology to fetishize.
But what are some other alternatives? Please give your suggestions. I think that many YouTube “ads” can be presented to sell the Aptera. And I think it would be useful to break from the Johnny Ive type of promotion that Lucid Air is doing.
The Johnny-Ive-Lucid-Air YouTube promotion is all well and good, and Aptera has the technology innovations to out-techno-fetishize Lucid, but other approaches may be more appealing.
Here are my suggestions:
1. The Three Things Template: Extreme Efficiency / 99% Driving Cases / Safety
The “three things template” would resemble the introduction of the iPhone:
An Ipod, a phone, an internet communicator. Before this time, there were devices, high-end Nokias (among a few others) that could tenuously claim being all three, but had poor implementation and no one could use them in the US.
These Nokia devices were similar to the Lucid Air: really expensive, and frankly a bit too precious for use.
So for this commercial, you take three Aptera features, and keep on demonstrating them over the course of the commercial. And you end with the tag “Aptera” instead of iPhone.
2. The “in automotive history, flashpoints of innovation occur . . .” Template
This commercial has been done with certain aspects of automotive history, mostly Mercedes performance commercials, touting Mercedes as part of a grand tradition of performance and automotive history.
So you could do a b&w drag race of an Aptera vs. a sports car, intersperse techno-looks at automotive Aptera advances, move to color and the finish of a drag race. Focus on woman taking off her racing helmet, cut same image of her fixing her hair as she picks up her kid at school. Tagline reflecting automotive history and practicality.
This is more of a mock automotive history commercial, a serious one would also be great.
3. The Car that Sells Itself Adaptation. See Honda campaign.
This I think is an essential commercial YouTube Video for the Aptera. Basically, the Aptera’s potential owner has a pretty good idea of the value of the car. The problem is looking at the car, you don’t know that it fits all the use cases that you need. So you have to test it. A good commercial/ YouTube campaign would go through all the basic scenarios for Aptera use.
1. Basic Version: testing car for various purposes before buying it. Mimic of Honda commercial buyer selling car, but also loading it for different purposes.
2. Story Version 1, sad but happy ending: Boy has girl. Boy has another love, the Aptera. Girl is jealous of Aptera. Boy buys Aptera. Girl jealous. Angry at boy. Boy gives girl Aptera. Girl falls in love with Aptera. Boy loses Aptera, but wins girl who now may love the Aptera. You could do this in 60 sec.
You can go through different permutations of this Honda template, based on the Honda commercial premise that the car can do all the things that the potential owner imagined.
But the way the Lucid is marketing itself is “we are more Johnny Ive than Tesla.” And Tesla’s brand is futuristic with its cyber-truck and self-driving.
Aptera needs to say, “yes, we’re all that, and more in terms of tech, but we can also fit your biggest Costco trip in the trunk.” That is, the practicality and cost must be marketed alongside the pretty pictures and techno stuff.
The fault in the Lucid Air stuff is that they just use “Johnny-Ive” techno-fetishization and neglect the other half of the Apple marketing–here are all the things you can do differently.
MemberDecember 6, 2021 at 7:51 pm
In my view, Aptera is not for everyone, because not all of us are that cool, or adventurous, or have a vision that changes the 100 year old automotive paradigm. Tesla is just a car with electric motors instead of an internal combustion engine. the other electrics from Porsche- ford are even less interesting. 1/4 the power consumed per mile as Tesla, thus 4x the range on the same battery pack. no need to plug in for the typical commute. coolest looking vehicle on the planet. Count me in.
MemberDecember 6, 2021 at 8:22 pm
John, I think you make some very interesting points. Lucid is competing I think for the Tesla buyer and trying to upscale. There is essentially little difference in the two platforms or if there are they are incremental. Aptera on the other hand has capabilities which are called functional differentiation in industrial marketing terms. 1/4 the drag resulting in 1/4 the battery power consumption per mile is a functional difference. Huge. this is a game changer. Neither Tesla or Lucid, Posrshe, Ford etc, can claim the same or easily adapt to deal with their functional weakness. This segment of the market belongs to Aptera. If the custom latches onto this differentiation of 1/4 the drag resulting in 4 x the range for same battery power Aptera wins. Resulting in solar powered car most days, no charging stations required, no gas stations. a huge winner.
combined with easily 600 mile range. again a winner.
additionally, in the evolving EV market, the claim is that the Aptera 3 motor vehicle is faster than a Porsche Carrera and probably as fast as the Porsche EV at 1/3 the price. Aptera is the new two seater sports car of the EV market. This is a big segment I think. Add some racing stripes.
Two seats. The number of times I see more than two people in a car on the 405 is less than 1 in 100.
MemberDecember 6, 2021 at 8:38 pm
It’s not the number of people you see in the vehicle on Interstate 405 that counts. It’s the number of people at home that need to be carted around.
I suppose the Aptera could be the Miata of the EV world.
MemberDecember 6, 2021 at 8:31 pm
I come from a racing background. I really enjoy the performance numbers including the range. The base model is not too far off of entry car range, but nothing for the price can match the performance or the mileage. One of the things I’m looking at is an all-wheel drive 250 mile range model to have as my speed demon and race around vehicle. I like the idea of attracting young buyers and racing enthusiasts, I think it makes for a great future.
MemberDecember 6, 2021 at 8:31 pm
dont think its worth paying for advertisements when most people most the time hate advertisements wasting their time anyway especially nowdays b/c mass shortening of attention span. meanwhile, youtubers show people novel stuff and people want to watch it. even the cringe youtubers liek supercar blondie are worth using, the better ones like savagese, jay emm, topautoNL, etc for content worthy of sharing with people that arnt mentally or literally children, and you can put their stuff on main website. non car youtube too like “unbox therapy”, marques brownlee, mrwhost soheboss etc. also people who make music but arnt label signed so they reach people but are not expensive to deal with (not even any talk about the car, just having it visually as focus piece like usual luxry cars are used).
wrap over headlights etc (assuming u dont need all the headlights on a given left or right side of car) can give different aesthetic.
MemberDecember 7, 2021 at 1:43 am
I don’t really think Aptera should invest much in advertising this early in the game. When they have a few thousand vehicles on the road I think they will get swamped with orders. It is not good to make people wait too long after seeing an ad for something before they can own it.
That being said; The words I have heard Chris say a number of times now, and that I believe needs to be said until it sinks in is ” If you start with the equation – you end up with this.” In what shape do you transport two people, sitting comfortably upright, side by side in the most efficient manner possible. Aptera – the shape of things to come. ( And maybe just for spite – have it drive past a dilapidated, cobweb covered and dirty Exxon station with the sign hanging from one bolt holding the corner up.)
MemberDecember 7, 2021 at 7:25 am
“Imagine FREE Fuel” APTERA Driving past Fuel Cost Signs
“Carbon-Free Fuel” APTERA Parked by Pretty Flowers
“New Motoring Sounds” Cockpit View (at Speed) of Beautiful Place/National Park, Luciano Pavarotti Track “VINCERO”
“Leave No Trace” APTERA passing by at Speed
“Late Arriving” Two Clips – One of Noisy Car, Date Gets out, Lights Come on…APTERA arriving, Kiss Good Night, No Lights Come on
ModeratorDecember 7, 2021 at 8:27 am
Hi, John. Looks like you stirred up the hornet’s nest — in a good way!
I tend to agree that doing a TV-worthy commercial this early in the game is not a good idea. I’ve been brainstorming Aptera advertising slogans for some time. Others have as well. My personal favorite so far is this one that popped into my brain the other day: “Aptera — The Cure for the Common Car”. I envision this on a one page flyer with text that emphasizes the unique aspects of the vehicle and how an owner will stand out from the crowd. There’s a real trend toward personalization of vehicles these days = vehicle wraps, special wheels, unique colors. I’m reminded of Apple Computer’s “Think Different” campaign from years ago. Many of us like the idea of taking a different path from the herd.
MemberDecember 7, 2021 at 8:59 am
Yeah, I realize that Aptera can’t do the million dollar Toyota commercial right away. But you can post on YouTube for free, have it go viral or semi-viral with a shoe-string budget. For example, take ” ” If you start with the equation – you end up with this.” That’s a really exciting statement, and Leno reacts to that big statement will all the emotion and enthusiasm of a dead fish. (This is the problem of relying on unscripted YouTube–like the one with the guy who puts a bike in the back. Great example, but delivers the message that it was a delicate operation to get one bike in the back.)
You could take that “If you start with the equation–you end up with this” statement, add a comment from a more interested interlocutor, “it’s so obvious, how long did it take?” then go through a chronology of building the car with all the technology displayed, done to a guitar riff like a version of “Bad to the Bone.”
Or, revise the bike-fitting YouTube post. (Not a bad post!)
– In 60 seconds, you could demonstrate fitting 30 use-case scenarios into the car.
– You add a storyline of an obsessive compulsive type insisting on going through the use cases.
I’m just saying that it’s a cool exercise to think of cheap but more highly-produced YouTube (free) commercials you could do on a shoe-string budget.
So, you could do something like the Toyota commercial–going against the common perception of a solar car–with an ancient drag racer going back to the track with an Aptera. That image of going past an old Esso/Exxon station is great!
None of this needs to be really expensive. I’ve been reading through the posts here, and looking at the videos of what people say that they want it for. And my general feeling is that it’s like the iPhone debut–same functions as other phones–or in this case, same experiences as other cars, but better. I like the way that the aptera is being sold now, and there’s no need to move from that now; but I think it’s an interesting exercise to talk about how to outdo a Lucid “commercial” (this was a YouTube post) or do something different.
By the way, that Lucid spot is highly produced.
Anyway, I have some friends in the editing and film world–you might be able to get a young director or editor to work for stock. Or you might think about running a contest.
Or we could just kick around ideas for months on this forum! Really like that image of an Aptera zooming by an old gas station in the desert.
MemberDecember 8, 2021 at 8:46 am
The marketing needs to embrace the strengths of the car from a practical “jobs to be done” standpoint which I believe are:
1) Practical charging freedom
2) Long distance capable
3) More efficient than almost anything else out there
The polarizing design is consumer obvious, so it should not be the focus. You love it or hate it. The focus should be, in my opinion, function over form. You can experience having an EV now without all the charging headaches others out there experience.
1) You can easily use 120V to car your car. No fancy installations necessary at home.
2) If you don’t have a home and need to park in an apartment lot, no worries. The sun will keep you going until getting to a charger. The efficiency should virtually eliminate the need to have charging capacity at home.
3) Aptera will charge fast! Not only will DC fast charging be available, but you get more miles on the same charge reducing the time needed to get you on the road (numbers can be figured out here).
4) This is the first affordable long distance car at the larger battery sizes. You can drive across the country for the whole day and charge overnight. You may not need to stop and wait for the car to charge. Can’t do that on virtually any other car (maybe the Lucid is on the edge). This could be a major game changer for those who like to travel by car. The first distance freedom car!
5) For the environmentally conscious, efficiency matters. Go further on less. Costs and consumes less mile for mile than any comparable options. This is already a big point Steve focuses on, but I think it has a limited reach. I personally think this is a great selling point for us geeks, but for the broader audience, I’d focus on how it would change their lives. Less charging issues, farther distances, costs less. The only major functional drawback is that it is a 2 seater . If this was a 4 seater, it would revolutionize the mid tier EV industry.
Second: This is the first true
MemberDecember 8, 2021 at 1:14 pm
Aptera’s design is it’s selling point. Polarizing is good, it’s fine if 99% of the public don’t like it just as long as 1% love it. This is a very niche car and that’s also good because going forward there is no room for another mainstream American car company. Tesla is the first new American car company in a hundred years, the last was Dodge, to achieve mass volumes. They will also be the last. There will be Chinese mass market companies that enter the market, after they’ve established themselves at home, but there won’t be another American company. Aptera needs to carve out a niche that’s big enough to be profitable but not so big as to attract the attentions of a big player. Ultimately their success or failure will depend on how well the car performs, it will have to come close to their efficiency promises and it will also have to perform well as a car. If it performs like it looks they won’t have to do much to attract enough buyers, if it doesn’t there is no amount of marketing money that will save them.
Lucid did a fantastic engineering job, they have the lightest most efficient drive units of anyone and the best range. But their big problem is that they set out to build an electric S Class, which they’ve done. Unfortunately for them Mercedes also set out to do the same. They had to be hoping that Mercedes would half ass it, which was not an unreasonable assumption, but they didn’t. The EQS is a terrific vehicle, it’s less efficient than the Lucid Air and has less range but it’s range is over 300 miles which is good enough. As a true S Class the EQS hits the mark which is going to make Lucid’s life very difficult. That’s why Lucid is running an old fashion marketing campaign, they need to convince customers to come to them, they can’t happen on that happening organically.
MemberDecember 11, 2021 at 6:00 am
I agree about the polarizing design. I don’t have any issue with it myself, but you don’t spend marketing dollars on something that is so consumer obvious. That point sells itself and you won’t convince many people who do have issues with the design. The educational value on advertising spend is the transformation of the charging life and range (my opinion). If the final product promises are true, then your marketing investment would be well spent on how the Aptera transforms the jobs that can be done that other EVs cannot. The only additional thought I had that isn’t consumer obvious, but relevent to people’s lives is the storage capacity. They’ve attempted to display this with a bike, but the message doesn’t resonate yet. Again, focusing on how this can transform what people can do with an EV, I’m sure they will be better able to demonstrate this in the future when they are further along. I’m just thinking about what I could do down the East Coast over long distances and it could enable travel down that corridor that it not easy with EVs today.
MemberDecember 9, 2021 at 9:21 am
The Luna reveal video would be a great start.
MemberDecember 10, 2021 at 6:25 am
I am going to make some one page flyers with a picture of Aptera on it with a LOST if found return to me. And post them on telephone poles around town.
MemberDecember 11, 2021 at 10:12 am
That’s a funny idea, I like it. ????
The flyer could be like:
[picture of Aptera]
REWARD $ 25’900.-
Parked or on it’s way
MemberDecember 10, 2021 at 7:04 am
“Take Me To Your Leader”!
MemberDecember 11, 2021 at 6:27 am
Tread lightly. Without compromise.
Range anxiety is a thing of the past.
With 1,000 miles of available range, access to a nationwide network of fast chargers, a base price under $27,000, and jaw-dropping performance, Aptera is the electric vehicle for people who didn’t know they wanted an electric vehicle.
MemberDecember 11, 2021 at 7:05 am
I like range anxiety is a thing of the past!
MemberDecember 11, 2021 at 11:22 am
Let’s get a little playful here…”Aptera – the exhilarating cure for Range Anxiety! Leaving you free to concentrate on all of those other pesky anxiety- producing issues!”
MemberDecember 11, 2021 at 12:08 pm
LESS weight, LESS drag, LESS money, LESS energy. MORE excitement, MORE fun and
MemberDecember 11, 2021 at 1:34 pm
So, like the freedom ideas. Here’s a version.
FREEDOM: END OF THE WEEKLY SHAKEDOWN
Grizzled, dressed in an old jeans jacket. Fits your idea of a “frontiers-man” or “frontiers-woman” from an old western.
Ingenue male or female, driving age.
GAS STATION ATTENDANT
man in oil-splattered uniform.
Open on halcyon morning, Gramps driving Ingenue in Aptera. Life is good. Interior of Aptera.
INGENUE: What other things?
GRAMPS: Oh, there was a lot that was different. The world was different. I kind of——
Suddenly, something catches the eye of Gramps, and he screeches the Aptera to a halt. Gramps’s demeanor darkens suddenly as if he’s seen a monster. He stares to the side of the road at something we cannot see.
INGENUE: What is it? What’s the matter?
Ingenue looks in the direction that gramps is looking. We get a distorted view in the reflection of the windshield that Gramps is looking at a gas station, but it’s not clear what it is.
GRAMPS: See that place at the side of the road?
GRAMPS: See that guy?
Cut to grainy flashback of shakedown: Repeated scene of a young Gramps counting out money and hands it over to the guy.
GRAMPS: For almost all my life, every week, that so-and-so would shake-down me and everyone in town. I must have paid him hundreds of thousands. Each week, sometimes twice a week, I’d go there and say, “How much is it this time?” Sometimes it was twenty. Sometimes a hundred.
INGENUE: Whatever he wanted?
GRAMPS: Basically. That was how it worked.
GRAMPS: Makes me just want to——
Suddenly, Gramps floors the accelerator and tears into the place that he is looking at, which we still don’t recognize as a gas station. Gramps and Ingenue get out of the Aptera, and Gramps marches over to the station attendant.
GRAMPS: Hey, you!
INGENUE: Calm down gramps.
Gramps and Attendant face off. The attendant takes out his cigar and smiles.
ATTENDENDAT: Haven’t seen you here in a while.
GRAMPS: Just curious. How much you taking this week?
ATTENDANT: Bout five hundred per sucker. You got a friend who needs some?
GRAMPS: No, just wanted to tell you, I’ll never pay you again, and you’ll never see me again.
ATTENDANT: Suit yourself. Some just love to pay.
INGENUE: Let’s go Gramps.
Ingenue and Gramps walk back to the Aptera. In a widescreen shot, we see that they were at a gas station. Cut to back inside car, Gramps and Ingenue quiet.
INGENUE: Can’t imagine what it would be like to pay to drive my Aptera.
GRAMPS: There once was a day when we couldn’t imagine it otherwise. It’ll never be that way for you.
INGENUE: That’s good.
Aptera drives into the sunrise on the horizon.
MemberDecember 11, 2021 at 1:51 pm
Whoops, didn’t stick the ending. Scratch the last exchange and replace with the following:
Interior of the car after a beat.
INGENUE: So, let me get this right. You had to pay that guy?
GRAMPS: When ever we wanted to drive—
INGENUE: If you wanted to go anywhere?
GRAMPS: Anywhere. We had to pay. Whatever he wanted!
INGENUE: No way!
GRAMPS: Cars didn’t alway run on solar.
Fade to exterior drone shot of Aptera riding into the sunrise.
ANNOUNCER: Aptera, [tagline]
MemberDecember 11, 2021 at 2:27 pm
You might even say Less is More.
That would be a comforting message in these times of rapid change.
MemberDecember 14, 2021 at 2:09 am
MemberDecember 14, 2021 at 3:26 am
Aptera already has enough preorders to last 18 months. Aptera now has to build the brand and look to the future where they deliver a 4/5 seater, a pickup, a van…. all designed for efficiency. The Aptera roadster is already a collectors vehicle. An add that shows Aptera morfing into future designs focusing on efficiency.
In a hurry, out of gas, all charge points taken, Aptera keeps going on sunshine.
MemberDecember 14, 2021 at 9:13 am
Agree with both Ronster and David…no need to advertise outside of current WOM by Ambassadors/Reservation holders. Hype now would backfire if unable to meet demand, especially given small scale manufacturing. Time to advertise would be after current orders fulfilled and additional manufacturing sites secured!