Volkswagen (VW) remains the number one car manufacturer in the world and with the launch of its BlueMotion range of cars, VW faced the challenge of promoting its eco-conscious thinking. It wanted to launch a print campaign that was effective in building brand awareness whilst being kind to the environment.
The BlueMotion range is powered by innovative, energy-saving technologies specially designed to reduce both fuel consumption and harmful emissions. It wanted to create print ads that saved paper instead of wasting it and decided that recycling would be the best way of doing so. The people of South Africa have easy access to post boxes, however, not every neighbourhood has a formal recycling bin. Therefore, VW introduced ‘the blue label,’ a small advert that easily allowed people to recycle their magazines. The brand’s production budget, which was originally meant for photography and/or illustration for the campaign, was instead used to make the sticky labels.
Because of the lack of local recycling facilities in South Africa, 77% of magazines in the country are thrown away. The ‘blue labels’ were magazine inserts that doubled as pre-paid postage stickers. Once the reader was finished with their magazine, they could simply secure the label onto the front cover and drop it into a post box after which it got sent to a recycling plant. Turning the post boxes into recycling bins meant that many people in Cape Town were able to actively participate in recycling for the first time.
VW successfully created a campaign that echoed BlueMotion thinking.
It received a 9% response rate – almost double the projected figure.
After the success of the ‘blue labels’ in Cape Town, VW decided to introduce them to other cities in South Africa.