Subaru have taken several pages from Foursquare's book and launched a new site offering vehicle owners a series of “merit badges for lifestyle activities” which can be displayed on their cars. The decision to launch the service is based on the brand’s "heart to wallet" strategy – focusing in on the emotional attachment over more rational purchase decisions .
"We plan to evolve it into our version of a 'frequent flyer' program, so that based on your interaction with the brand [both at retail and online], you can earn things,” says Kevin Mayer, Subaru's director of marketing communications.
The badges themselves depict the ranking of ownership numerically (as in ‘this is my third Subaru’) in order to push brand devotion. Icons representing various hobbies, passions and achievements can also be added, from snow sports to gardening to even highlighting a driver’s earnings. Judging by the 7,000 orders the concept has been picked up well by owners keen to customise their vehicles with personalised status markers.