A Legacy of Performance
The Richard Petty Driving Experience is known for providing NASCAR enthusiasts the once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to drive an authentic stock race car at top speeds. In addition to stock car experiences, Petty also operates Exotic Driving Experience, which gives sports car lovers the opportunity to drive extreme super cars built by Ferrari, Lamborghini, Porsche and others through a custom performance track.
In 2013, Petty came to UNION ready to launch yet another driving experience brand. This time, the focus was classic, distinctively American muscle cars. The new brand, American Muscle Car Challenge, was to create a driving experience that allowed muscle car fans the opportunity to drive a Ford Mustang Shelby GT500, Chevrolet Camaro ZL1 and a Dodge Challenger SRT8 392 — in a side-by-side, test track environment. It is a well-known tradition of muscle car followers to debate which muscle car is the best, and Petty’s new concept would provide fans and friends with the perfect venue to challenge each other, once and for all.
With little more than this initial driving concept, Petty Holdings sought UNION’s help in bringing the American Muscle Car Challenge (AMCC) idea from idle to full throttle. Since AMCC is unlike any other driving experience on the market, UNION needed to assist Petty in crafting an engaging experience and brand story from the ground up, which would quickly communicate the new driving experience — and immediately engage fans and customers. And yes, we all took a few laps around the speedway in each car — for “research.”
- AMCC logo A
- AMCC logo
- AMCC logo B
As an entirely new brand, UNION first partnered with the team at Petty to identify the overall brand articulation. Our team led strategic brand planning sessions and guided their core team in defining the personality and positioning of the new brand as a “bad-ass performance challenge” with the brand promise of:
The American Muscle Car Challenge is the only hands-on driving experience that allows you to drive all three icons of American automotive muscle — as fast as you can — in a safe, test track environment.
Following the brand articulation work, UNION stepped into the driver's seat to begin our design work. We provided the Petty team with several bold identity solutions which would work well to deliver the personality and visual identity of the new brand. Then, with the new brand look and feel in place, our team developed a comprehensive style guide to help ground the brand's entire visual approach moving forward.
Constructing a Solid Framework
Understanding the importance of a digital marketing platform that is fully enabled to attract site visitors and to convert traffic into actual customers and revenue, our strategy work focused on overcoming two distinct business challenges:
One, AMCC was a new type of driving experience. Since it was unlike any other offering in the marketplace, we quickly needed to communicate its unique value and convince users that this track experience is one worth experiencing.
Two, as a result of a variety of user options and variables in the booking process, the overall experience would need to be condensed and streamlined for a better user experience.
Our solution was simple: show the three challenge car options side by side as much as possible. Our strategy also focused on crafting three main navigation items to keep the site lean and fast: The Challenge, The Cars and The Tracks. Finally, staying true to the “lean and fast” strategy, our team streamlined AMCC’s fourteen-step reservation process into seven simple steps, greatly improving the overall conversion performance.
Designing a Fast-Moving User Experience
Using responsive design techniques, the new platform was created to respond to any screen size — from desktops down to smartphones: any device, any OS, any browser, all needed to work.
How Fast Can You Go?
To capture the power and real-world intensity of the muscle cars — and their manufacturers — the design and content of the new platform needed to deliver. Since the client’s name is American Muscle Car Challenge and the cars were, in fact, symbols of American manufacturing strength, the use of a red, white and blue color palette was the natural choice.
When it came time to write the narrative and copy for the platform, we worked hard to capture a tough, yet inviting message. Our copywriters focused on speaking through a tone of “bad-ass performance” touched with inspiration from the fun and informative voice of brand spokesman Rutledge Wood.
Finally, understanding that the powerful, fast, high-quality—and let’s face it—awesomeness of these cars speaks for itself, we partnered with RPM3D to render, paint and position the cars — in just the right light.
By now we have all accepted that if you aren't on mobile, you aren't anywhere. Knowing this is a key user experience (and business) requirement for all brands, especially one with a primary track in Las Vegas, NV, our team optimized the platform's design to respond to various types of connected devices.
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Driving Driver Traffic
Following the launch of the platform, it was UNION's digital campaign team’s turn to deploy a comprehensive marketing campaign aimed at increasing brand awareness, driving qualified traffic to the platform and converting that traffic into reservation sales. To accomplish this, we executed three main tactics:
Because AMCC was a new property, the results of our work were immediate and clear. Within the first three months of launch, UNION was able to show meaningful and measurable business results to the brand.19,518 Average
Monthly Visits130% Return on