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How Does Tiny Subaru Top Lamborghini and Ferrari? It’s Not About Performance

How does tiny Subaru top sports car brands Lamborghini and Ferrari? It’s not about performance.

Subaru has something in common with sports car brands Lamborghini and Ferrari, but it’s not what you might think. Subaru has a performance division, Subaru Tecnica International (STI) and builds a car like the WRX STI sports sedan, but that’s not it. And it isn’t that Subaru is heavily involved in international motorsports with the Nurburgring 24-hour race or Global Rallycross. It’s all about how they connect with their customers and keep them talking about their brands.

In the competitive automotive industry, brands have a tough time standing out among their competition. Subaru is doing something remarkable that ranks them in the top 3 brands along with Lamborghini and Ferrari. What are these brands doing to keep positive conversations going with customers?

Subaru ranks #1 for offline sentiment

In order to stand out amongst competitors, automotive brand’s marketers invest millions of dollars in digital marketing campaigns to boost their brand’s image and appeal, engage with its audience and build its customer base. Subaru doesn’t rank in the top 10 when it comes to social media, but they do rank #1 in auto brands for generating positive “Offline Sentiment.”

The data comes from Engagement Labs who ranked the top U.S. automotive brands on social media and through word of mouth (WOM) conversations and found some interesting statistics. They came up with TotalSocial scores based on four key metrics, conversation volume, sentiment, brand sharing, and influence.

Another impactful metric is sentiment, measuring whether conversations about the brand are positive or negative. Subaru didn't make the top ten “Online” brands, however the small Japanese automaker is #1 for generating very positive conversations with consumers along with top sports car brands Lamborghini and Ferrari in second and third place respectively.

What is Subaru doing better?

Subaru keeps positive conversations going about their brand through a number of offline events that engage their customers. They hold numerous Subaru sponsored car shows around the country where performance enthusiasts can show off their custom WRX STIs. These events feature live music, factory reps, prizes, and plenty of good food for fans. They also hold many winter events at popular ski resorts during the season to showcase their vehicle’s all-wheel-drive capabilities. Go to Page 2.

They also sponsor a Cherry Blossom Festival in Philadelphia, Dining Out for Life fundraiser, Subaru Loves Pets initiative, “Meet an Owner”, and many other customer-focused events. These are all geared towards creating a positive experience for owners who then have positive conversations about the Subaru brand with their friends. Subaru is doing this better than any other automaker including Lamborghini and Ferrari.

So the next time you see a new 2018 Subaru WRX STI performance car, Outback wagon, Forester SUV or Crosstrek crossover, the owner likely heard about the Subaru brand through word of mouth from a friend. Subaru ranks #1 in auto brands ahead of Lamborghini and Ferrari for generating positive “Offline Sentiment.”

Photo credit: Subaru (Ryan Baldwin)