Chefs and Test Drives Amp Up Cadillac’s Mall Tour
Cadillac’s Culinary Challenge put a new spin on the old mall tour. The ride-and-drive experience with culinary and lifestyle twists traveled to 14 luxury malls, spicing up the experience with test drives of Cadillacs and competing vehicles and a cause- marketing overlay.
After a few years running the Culinary Challenge, Cadillac expanded on the competition between its vehicles and rivals by bringing in celebrity chefs for cooking competitions with local chefs. The addition, a partnership with Share Our Strength, Bon Appétit and Epicurious.com, was designed to spotlight the U.S. hunger epidemic, and led to a $100,000 donation to Share Our Strength.
Consumers were encouraged to drive as many Cadillacs as they wished and to create a “challenge” of their own by testing the competitive vehicles on-site. Product specialists answered questions and vehicle displays and an innova- tion lounge showed off Cadillac, Bose and On-Star technology. A Cadillac concierge connected consumers with local dealers by setting appointments and arranging extended test drives.
For the cooking duels, chefs prepared regional fare with a theme ingredient, and guests got to sample the creations, participate in Q&As and receive recipe cards afterward. In all, the Culinary Challenge brought in 12,779 online registrations and 6,839 attendees who took 6,223 test drives. For the calendar year, it helped generate 269 vehicle sales, and 84 percent of respondents to post-event surveys said their opinion of Cadillac as “very good” or “excellent.”