AA’s latest ad campaign puts the company's brand back on the right road

Stephan Shakespeare
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A car gets fixed
Insurer the AA has had a surge with a new advert (Source: Getty)

Over the last month, AA has achieved the greatest uplift in its ad awareness score among all the brands YouGov tracks.

This is as a result of a £10m campaign, which features a young girl sat in the backseat of a car miming along to Tina Turner’s ‘Proud Mary’. The girl continues to sing despite an unexpected breakdown, thanks to the AA’s rapid response.

It marks a new direction in the brand’s advertising, moving on from the traditional ‘man under a bonnet’ ad that has often characterised the campaigns of car breakdown services.

Read more: AA blasts government over discount rate impact on car premiums

YouGov brand tracking data points to the success the advert has had. Since its release in early June, AA’s ad awareness score (whether someone has seen an advert for the brand in the last two weeks) among all respondents has grown by 10 points, from 10 to 20.

Crucially, the score is more pronounced among those that would consider purchasing an AA product. Looking at this group, its score jumped from 16 to 35 – underlining how well targeted the ad is.

Of course, the brand’s modernising efforts, and increased sense of fun in its advertising is in part to attract younger customers. Again, the signs are good for the AA – its ad awareness score among those aged between 18 and 29 has grown from 10 to 22.

Read more: AA shares leap as it jump-starts membership

However, our data shows that simply enjoying the advert won’t be enough to turn viewers into customers. YouGov’s Motor Insurance: Young Drivers report explores the purchasing journey of younger drivers. It shows that 70 per cent of those aged between 18 and 24 years check product reviews before buying something, while 82 per cent will use price comparison websites (compared to 70 per cent of the general population). Three in ten will ask advice from family and friends prior to switching, against just a fifth (21 per cent) of the public at large. And of course, price is still the main diving factor – 83 per cent are usually looking for the lowest price when they are shopping.

The study underlines that although AA’s successful campaign is one step on the way to attracting younger drivers, it still needs to ensure other areas of the business are suited to those potential customers’ needs.

Read more: AA grows revenue and earnings as it reverses decline in member numbers

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