Aspire Activate
Aspire Communicate
Aspire Connect

Exploring new brand terrain with Thule

Client

Thule

Services

Aspire Activate
Aspire Communicate

Brief

Increase brand awareness in key market sectors and build visibility in urban and lifestyle spaces

For those who know Thule, the Swedish outdoor brand, there is no better kit to partner with on an adventure. But what about those who don’t know about Thule’s commitment to sustainability and its innovative product line-up? In our first year working with Thule, we set out to connect with core fans and inspire a whole new audience to get active and explore more.

A Swedish success story

Thule began in the small village of Hillerstorp in Sweden in 1962. The company started out making ski racks and over the years moved on to designing and producing all kinds of outdoor storage products, from roof racks, camping equipment and bike carriers to kids trailers, buggies, backpacks and most recently dog crates.

From those humble beginnings, Thule is now internationally renowned with sales in over 130 countries. Even with such worldwide success, the company has never lost its passion for the outdoors and helping people live an active life.

Thule is an innovative brand with purposeful values – quality, safety, design and ease of use – and an industry leader, driven by a passion that allows people to ‘bring your life, wherever it chooses to take you’. 

Our goal in a year working together was to push the boundaries of brand awareness and reach the people who need to know about Thule in new lifestyle sectors.

“Thule has designed an aftermarket car storage solution that appears to defy the laws of physics”

Top Gear Magazine

One year of brand building

To heighten brand awareness, profile and reputation for Thule across the UK market, we began by agreeing key messaging, strategy and narratives for the year ahead.

We wanted to reinforce USPs, the ‘why’ behind the brand, while driving a premium, must-have sense about Thule.

We mapped out 3 different workstreams to maintain credibility and visibility in established sectors while broadening appeal in urban and lifestyle spaces.

1. Reactive and proactive press office 

With 8 key product launches across the year, we had an opportunity to deliver and secure credible coverage across the outdoor, lifestyle, travel and sports space with key media outlets and freelance journalists in the UK.

Our ‘always-on’ press office ensured we gained inclusion in the right places at the right time for Thule products.

2. Brand ambassador programme

To represent the brand and generate content for seeding, we sourced and managed Thule brand ambassadors in the UK.

Not only did the ambassadors (Hannah Barnes, Scott Laughland and Paul from the Moloko Cycling Community) help to broaden brand reach, we also used local creative ambassadors (Rebekah Jade and Darren Rowlands) to create brand content with Thule hero products.

3. Big brand moments

Throughout the year, we used key brand activations to attract diverse media including from the urban lifestyle sector. We wanted to maintain the brand’s core credibility while introducing new audiences to Thule’s technology, innovation and design.

“We’ve got hands-on experience with many roof boxes this year, but the one we want on our car is the Thule Motion XT”

Forbes

Thule European Roadshow

Thule came to London to showcase its new product range and we used the opportunity to attract a cross-section of guests. We took a deep dive into the product line-up and targeted exposure in key titles.

Eurobike & Hillerstorp Media Trip

We invited top tier journalists from the UK media to visit the Thule factory in Hillerstorp leading to detailed brand coverage in titles such as Road.cc. We also invited the UK cycling press to visit Eurobike in Frankfurt, Germany, where we hosted an international media breakfast at the Thule expo booth.

THEX 23/24

Later in the year, we took high profile journalists from the automobile, design, tech and cycling spaces to visit the Thule Brand Experience in Malmo, Sweden. This was a rare moment to experience the brand first-hand and have quality, in-depth time with brand representatives.

Gaining kudos across channels

394k

new followers across social channels

1.7bn

online readership from media campaigns

4.7m

Instagram reel plays

Delivering positive, on-brand visibility

Over 12 months working with Thule, we delivered high quality earned media exposure including 121 pieces of coverage with an online readership of nearly 1.8 billion.

Our work gained traction on social and community channels, too. Across Instagram, TikTok & YouTube Thule gained 394k followers, 457k likes and 195k engagements.

The use of key activations such as the Hillerstorp visit generated in-depth brand coverage such as an exclusive ‘behind the scenes’ content from the factory tour. While the brand ambassadors helped Thule to extend its profile into new brand areas.

As 2023 proves, there’s a lot you can achieve in 12 months. But using the adventurous spirit of Thule as inspiration, there’s even more brand terrain to explore next year.