Audi India’s #StartYoung Targeting Millennials Is a Half Hearted Approach On Digital

To promote the latest Q3, Audi India launched #StartYoung campaign targeting millennials. It is a bold effort but the digital execution is a half hearted one

This year brands have two defined agenda set on digital - 1. Spread the brand communication with videos, and 2. Tell real life stories on digital to get the attention of millennials. We have already seen this in brand campaigns like Ford Figo Aspire #WhatDrivesYou, Mountain Dew #NaamBanteHainRiskSe, Johnson Tiles #RedRampProject, among others following the trend of leveraging real life stories to bring alive their brand message on digital. The latest brand to follow this is Audi India with its #StartYoung ambassador campaign.

Audi, the German luxury car manufacturer last month rolled out the 2015 Audi Q3 facelift in the Indian market at Rs. 28.99 lakh (ex-showroom, Delhi). The new Audi Q3 compact SUV is offered in only three variants.

The Indian market has been fruitful for the German manufacturer, the company sold 10,851 units in 2014, registering a year-on-year increase of 8 percent. “India is a strategic market for Audi and the fourth top market in Asia after China, Japan and South Korea. We have a 34 percent share of the Indian market, which is among the highest for us globally. Audi has a similar market share in China whereas Brazil, our other growth market, is lower at 32 percent. That is the reason why we are taking a ‘long-term’ position on India,” informed Luca de Meo, Member of the Board of Management for Sales and Marketing, Audi AG to Business Line.

Audi Q3 - start young live big

For the new Q3 SUV, the company has already initiated its marketing efforts. To start with a 45-second TVC has been launched that showcases lifes new experiences and thrilling adventures with the car. The video ends with a message - “The world is yours for the taking. Start young live big.”


Centered around the brand message of “Start Young. Live Big”, Audi India has initiated a #StartYoung campaign on digital. #StartYoung is a collection of real life stories of youngsters who have chosen paths that they believe in.

For instance 21-year-old Soundarya Jayachandran is a singer, a songwriter and a guitarist. And she has found a unique following of her blues & pop rock music in Bengaluru. “I thought that I was good at guitar and if you are good at something you should go for it. Take all the chances that you want to take because when you start young you have the gift of time,” adds Soundarya in the minute-long video. “Start young, live big and keep smiling.”


As of now Audi India has uploaded five such inspiring stories of today’s youth who have started young and trying to make a difference. The latest story is of Chef Siddhanth Sawkar who serves a hot and fiery barbecue menu on the streets of Bengaluru from his popular food truck. “The whole idea is to start young and live big,” adds the chef at the end of the minute-long video.


Social media channels of the brand - Facebook and Twitter are being used to share the videos to garner more views.

#StartYoung - a half-hearted attempt on digital

Audi India has been working for years to get in the good books of the millennials. In the year 2012, during the initial launch of Q3, the company roped in Bollywood actor John Abraham and released a youth anthem - “This is our time.” The music video features actor John Abraham and musicians Mikey McCleary and Nikhil D’Souza, and captured young people seizing the moment. The music activation was seen on cinema, social, digital and mobile.

With Audi launching a new Q3, the automaker has tuned its communication while keeping the youth in the center. The message is bold and clear, powered with real life stories of today’s youth who are taking bold decisions and living life big. While the message works but the storytelling is a half-hearted one; the brilliant stories are cut short to minute-long videos. Before you can know about the youngsters and their stories, the video is already showing the Q3 brand message.

Looks like the brand wanted to feature real life stories but for the TV audience. The brand could easily have 3-4 minute long videos where the stories are told, giving justice to the work these youngsters are doing. For instance Ford for the launch of its latest compact sedan Figo Aspire, kickstarted a campaign called “What Drives You?” The objective was to discover the aspirations driving modern India, much like the new sedan that reflects the needs of the young consumer.

And to discover what young India aspires for, Ford roped in Farhan Akhtar as an anchor to bring forth passionate stories of real life achievers that included founder of, co-founders of, among others. Here’s Farhan on a drive-by interview with Phanindra Sama who founded, the online bus booking site. The duo in a three and half minute long video talk about what drove Phanindra to start Redbus and ends with Farhan inviting the viewer to share their own story.


Going by the campaign Audi India is targeting today’s millennial but with a TV mindset which falls flat as  millennials spend more time on digital and mobile. Moreover, the social media channels could have been used more creatively rather than for mere sharing of the videos. Audi can invite millennial achievers to share their own stories.

#StartYoung is no doubt a bold and great effort but the half-hearted execution on digital puts it off.