“Win the Weekend,” the recently released eight-part docuseries capturing behind-the-scenes development of the International Motor Sports Association’s new hybrid-electrified GTP class, has exceeded expectations from both the sanctioning body and Michelin, the presenting partner on the project.
The catalyst to create the docuseries originated with a vast IMSA-Michelin consumer research project conducted by Navigate that provided data insights around potential new audiences for IMSA content. The late 2021 study revealed that 65% of those unfamiliar with IMSA indicated they were potential fans.
“We found obvious direction from the Navigate research data that indicated a desire for IMSA content,” said IMSA Senior Vice President, Marketing and Operations, David Pettit. “But jumping straight into an IMSA race could be challenging for potential fans for various reasons. So, we opted for a different approach and utilized a platform that’s always on, always available and free to view.”
“’Win the Weekend’ is a great example of a client creatively utilizing the data, expertise, and consulting we provided to maximize the reach of their brand,” added AJ Maestas, founder of Navigate. “This project helps them connect with a massive new audience, while also providing value to existing fans.”
With an average of 1.5 million viewers per episode, “Win the Weekend” has exceeded viewership expectations, but also achieved exactly what IMSA and Michelin hoped it would – reach new audiences.
“We opted to utilize the YouTube platform so that we could intentionally target the various automotive affinity groups and passionate auto enthusiasts throughout North America,” Pettit said. “The goal was to build brand awareness and product interest among those not previously exposed, and early key performance indicators show that we are succeeding.”
Of the 4.7 million total viewers over the first three episodes, 4.2 million were previously unexposed to the IMSA YouTube page. IMSA has also seen increases in its subscriber base (+9,000 since episode 1, a 4% increase), and positive sentiment (+82%) in reaction to the on-demand content. *
Michelin, a longtime IMSA Corporate Partner, which spearheaded the research project with Navigate to gain a more comprehensive understanding of the IMSA audience potential, is also pleased with the results to date.
“Thrilling races have always been a part of the IMSA series, and 'Win the Weekend' shares a new perspective of life in the paddock,” said Katelyn Berry, vice president of business to consumer marketing of Michelin North America, Inc. “Seeing an increase of new viewers is exciting, and we are proud to partner with IMSA in unique ways to tell their story.”
Produced by the automotive creative agency, Tangent Vector, “Win the Weekend” offers an exclusive, inside perspective from teams, drivers and industry professionals around the new GTP class. The docuseries is available for free to all viewers on the official IMSA YouTube channel (https://www.youtube.com/imsaofficial).