Honda is furthering its fan appreciation efforts with the launch of HondaStories.com, which, as the name implies, asks fans to share stories about their Hondas. And, in order to facilitate conversations, the brand is also encouraging fans to use the hashtag #StartSomething.
The Honda Stories site asks owners to submit stories in 2,000 characters or less. They can also submit photos and tag their submissions with #hondalove, #mycivic, #honda, #bestyourself and #myhonda.
To kick off #StartSomething, Honda showed what it calls some "special appreciation" to a couple because of their long family history of Honda loyalty. The couple had contacted several dealers in the New York area looking to borrow CRVs for their upcoming wedding ceremony.
However, according to Alicia Jones, manager of Honda and Acura social marketing, the brand saw it as an opportunity to extend its Honda Loves You Back campaign and instead upped the ante. As of October 29, the YouTube video of this #StartSomething surprise has 97,000 views.
A 2011 press release calls Honda Loves You Back "a series of feel-good surprises" that connect with fans and show appreciation to current Honda owners like surprising Honda owners by paying for their parking at a Honda Center sporting event in Anaheim, Calif.; giving Honda owners a free car wash, free lunch and free back rub in Atlanta; and paying for Honda owners' parking at Aquarium of the Pacific in Long Beach, Calif.
More recently, a band called Monsters Calling Home "recorded, shot and edited an entire music video in their Hondas," Honda says on its Facebook page. "We think that's pretty rad. So we're doing everything we can to make them famous."
A video of the band's surprise performance on Jimmy Kimmel Live that was facilitated by Honda has 1.4 million views as of October 29.
And, Jones says, the brand is now using the #StartSomething hashtag to start conversations "where we can show some special appreciation."
In fact, the #StartSomething campaign launches along with a national TV spot called Thank You that shows photos and videos of families demonstrating appreciation of the Honda brand. Honda, in turn, thanks them.
According to Jones, the brand has had the ability for fans to submit stories to Tumblr for several months, but officially launched the Honda Stories site on October 28 and is "hoping to get more interesting stories from fans and customers through that."
As of October 29, Honda had received 14 stories via the new platform, Jones says.
According to Honda, the #StartSomething conversation will carry on across its social platforms, including Facebook, Google+, Instagram, Tumblr, Twitter and Vine. All stories will be collected at hondastories.com.
"We realized we have great stories that our customers and fans are posting and these are remarkable and interesting and fun stories that are a better testament to Honda products than we could ever dream up," Jones says.
Honda has 3 million likes.
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Lisa Lacy is senior staff writer at ClickZ. In addition to ClickZ, her work has appeared in The Huffington Post, The Luxury Spot, LearnVest, MarthaStewart.com, GoodHousekeeping.com, amNewYork, and The Wall Street Journal. She's a graduate of Columbia's School of Journalism.
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