Hyundai targets millennials, Gen Z with retro Netflix tie-up

    • Hyundai Motor Company teamed up with Netflix to provide various retro models from the 1980s and a location for a car chase in new film “Seoul Vibe,” per a company release. The automaker will also reveal the silhouette of its new Grandeur (Azera) model in a digital spot themed to the film, which Netflix released Aug. 26. 

    • In addition, Hyundai recreated the garage shown in the film on metaverse platform Zepeto, where consumers can assemble and drive the vehicles featured in the movie, meet with a non-player character (NPC) version of a character from the film, and join in a vlog event.

    • Hyundai’s marketing campaign across digital channels sees the automaker targeting millennial and Gen Z consumers and comes as Netflix seeks to work with marketers in advance of the launch of its ad-supported tier.

    Hyundai’s tie-up with Netflix around new actioner “Seoul Vibe” utilizes several channels and tactics that are popular with marketers seeking to engage with millennial and Gen Z consumers. 

    “Through close collaboration with Netflix from the early stages of production, we endeavored to provide a unique atmosphere for our historic vehicles and locations with a newtro (new+retro) vibe that will appeal to every generation, including millennial and Gen Z audiences,” said Thomas Schemera, executive vice president, global chief marketing officer and head of the customer experience division at Hyundai, in the press release.

    “Seoul Vibe” is set during the 1988 Seoul Olympics and features a car chase, making it a perfect fit for the South Korean automaker. For the film, Hyundai provided a filming location and various models, including the first-generation Grandeur (Azera), Pony Pickup, Porter light truck and old sedans such as the second-generation Sonata, Stellar and Cortina. Along with being period-appropriate for the film, the cars tie into 1980s nostalgia popular among millennials.

    To promote its forthcoming Grandeur (Azera) model, Hyundai released a cinematic digital spot that spins off the film’s story, features the cast and highlights the model’s evolution. The video is available on YouTube and Instagram, expanding the campaign’s reach beyond the subscriber-only confines of Netflix.

    Beyond video content, Hyundai is dipping its toes in the metaverse with an activation on the Zepeto platform that lets consumers assemble and drive vehicles from the movie, interact with an NPC version of one of the movie’s characters and join a vlog event. The elements of the activation show how some marketers are exploring the metaverse, especially with the rise of virtual brand characters.

    Hyundai is the latest brand to utilize the product placement capabilities of Netflix. Recently, Coca-Cola and Lacoste generated brand value by appearing in the platform’s smash hit “Stranger Things.” Until now, product placement has been the only way for marketers to engage with Netflix viewers, although the platform plans to launch a much-anticipated ad-supported tier in early 2023 with ad-tech and sales partner Microsoft.


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