Tesla marketing push in China sparks hope for investors in the West

As Tesla has ramped its marketing presence in China, some investors are hopeful the automaker could expand the strategy to Western markets.

One significant distinction between Tesla and traditional automakers in Western markets is the EV leader’s lack of marketing and advertisements. Unlike Ford, Chevrolet, Jeep, or even premium brands like BMW and Mercedes, Tesla has never had a Superbowl commercial, nor does it engage in any other traditional marketing mediums. However, with some investors now pushing Tesla to begin a marketing effort, the automaker seems to be implementing a marketing blueprint in one of its largest markets, China.

Like in Western markets, Tesla controls a solid social media presence in its second-biggest region by sales. However, alongside this online focus, Tesla has also increasingly engaged with the public in person. Most typically, this can be seen in community engagement events, in which Tesla displays its lineup, working to educate and influence the Chinese public to consider a Tesla for their next car purchase.

One great example of this marketing strategy was seen earlier this week as Tesla appeared at the Xichan Tempel in Fuzhou, China. At this event, the automaker brought vehicles for potential customers to interact with and also showed off a prototype of the Optimus robot and set up fun games and activities for children to play with.

Today, another example was published on the Chinese social media website Weibo, in which Tesla showed off much of the same at a marketplace in Xi’an, China.

Most importantly, thanks at least in part to this advertising push, Tesla continues to be a leader in EV sales in China, despite the incredibly competitive market. Just demonstrating a sample of this success, the Tesla Model Y is consistently one of the top-sold vehicles in many regions in China. For some investors, these results are evidence that the company should feel emboldened to advertise in other markets.

Regarding Tesla’s marketing strategy in North America and Europe, as noted above, it is lacking, resulting in calls from many notable investors to begin some kind of advertising campaign. As reported earlier this week, the automaker already has a strong social media following, particularly on Twitter, where it now eclipses top brands like Apple and Facebook in followers.

Some Tesla fans have taken this advertising effort into their own hands. Perhaps the best examples have come from Sawyer Merrit on Twitter, who has been publishing a series of videos advertising the most attractive aspects of EV ownership, explicitly focusing on the incredibly popular Model Y.

I made a new @Tesla Model Y video: pic.twitter.com/fx1gMqeQfK

— Sawyer Merritt (@SawyerMerritt) May 4, 2023

Neither Tesla nor Elon Musk has commented recently regarding the push from investors to engage in advertising. However, the CEO has previously noted that his comments on Twitter serve as an advertisement for the brand. With a multi-million follower count, Musk certainly has the credibility to back up his statement.

Not all Tesla investors are behind the recent effort to begin advertising the Tesla brand, with many pointing out that the business’s lack of advertising is an attractive force on its own. Moreover, many believe that an investment in advertising would take away funding from Tesla’s primary focuses; engineering, design, and software development.

What do you think of the article? Do you have any comments, questions, or concerns? Shoot me an email at william@teslarati.com. You can also reach me on Twitter @WilliamWritin. If you have news tips, email us at tips@teslarati.com!

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