With the recent advent of more prevalent electric car ads, including one from Audi in the Superbowl and generic ads from Electrify America and Veloz, we thought it was high-time to ask our readers what they think is worth advertising about electric cars.
Audi's Superbowl ad felt a little formulaic. It was slick, heartwarming, and exciting at times, but in other ways felt like an old Subaru commercial. With five months or so before Audi's first electric car goes on sale, it was hard for readers to understand the takeaway. The same goes for Electrify America's "Jetstones" campaign, which feels a little cartoony and has no call to action to buy a particular electric car, since the company can't single out brands in its advertising. (It's part of an agreement with the government over VW's diesel emissions scandal.)
If those ads don't quite seem to cut it, we wondered what would. So our Twitter question last week asked: "What EV advantages should ads emphasize for the masses in 2019?"
What EV advantages should ads emphasize for the masses in 2019?— Green Car Reports (@GreenCarReports) February 4, 2019
Among the options were: "Money savings," "Environmental cleanliness," "Quick, quiet performance," and "Cars' romance and freedom," which seems more or less what the Audi ad was trying to do.
The largest number of respondents, 41 percent, said automakers and others should advertise electric cars' quick, quiet performance. It is one of their most salient attributes, and one that many non-EV drivers haven't experienced. It's also one that most electric-car ads haven't mentioned.
The second largest group, 36 percent, chose "money savings," another perhaps unsung benefit of buying electric. Consumers tend to focus on higher sticker prices, and may not realize how much money driving on electricity and saving on maintenance can add up.
Surprisingly few respondents went with environmental cleanliness: 18 percent. Many viewers perhaps already associate electric cars with environmental awareness, and some segments of the public are put off by the association. This seems to be the main message of the "Jetstones" ad campaign.
Hardly any respondents thought electric cars should be advertised the same way as conventional cars have for decades. Fewer than 20 of our Twitter followers chose "Cars' romance and freedom" as the theme to highlight in electric car ads.
As always, remember that our Twitter polls are not scientific, because of their low sample size and because our respondents are self-selected. We're not sure automakers would listen to our suggestions anyway.