Pleased with the success of the inaugural Ganassi Sound Garage, Chip Ganassi Racing plans to repeat and expand the program in 2015.

The motorsports team, which hosted the Sept. 8 concert to engage social media-engaged millennials, saw significant results:

  • 41.1 million Twitter impressions
  • 1.02 million Instagram impressions
  • More than 5,000 Tweets and Instagrams

Further demonstrating success, the number of Twitter conversations with the #SoundGarage hashtag exceeded conversations with the #MNF hashtag (Monday Night Football) on Sept. 8. The #SoundGarage hashtag gained 19.6 million impressions versus 5.2 million for #MNF.

“When we had first decided to do the concert Chip asked ‘why would we do a concert?’ When it was over he asked ‘when are we doing the next one?’ said John Olguin, CGR vice president of communications.

The Origin of Sound Garage
CGR created the program to introduce the team’s three millennial drivers—Sage Karam (Verizon IndyCar Series), Dylan Kwasniewski (NASCAR Xfinity Series) and Kyle Larson (NASCAR Sprint Cup Series)—to young social media influencers with the goal of creating new race fans.

Using millennial passion points of music and access as the hook, CGR hosted a social media-driven concert featuring country musician Cassadee Pope. The event was held at the Ganassi Race Shop in Mooresville, N.C.

CGR invited 200 social media influencers to the event. CGR retained sports social media intelligence agency MVPIndex to identify 15-to-24-year-old influencers who live within 100 miles of the team’s race shop.  

CGR structured the concert to encourage user-generated content. The team accomplished that task with a “reverse red carpet” where attendees could walk the carpet in front of Pope and the drivers. The event also had photo booths were attendees could take photos of themselves with music and racing accoutrements.

“We felt it was important to let the audience tell the story through social media because that is what they are used to. They want to create content themselves.”  

CGR leaned on sponsors to enhance the event experience. Big Machine Records secured Pope, while General Motors Co. displayed Corvettes and other vehicles equipped with built-in Wi-Fi.

To no surprise, the program was well received by sponsors.

“As a sponsor, we are always challenging our race team partners to provide value beyond the track. The Ganassi Sound Garage experiment is a prime example of this leadership. The seamless layering of entertainment, racing and social media has caused me to rethink how we activate this growth segment in our business,” said John Acosta, director of marketing with Bass Pro Shops.

“We don’t want to be just a race team or a sports team. We want to think differently and create things that brands need,” said Olguin.

The team also secured several new sponsors for the program including Hewlett-Packard Co. and Skullcandy, Inc. H-P provided products to help attendees check in and print photos while Skullcandy distributed headphones.

CGR streamed the concert on ChipGanassiRacing.com, NASCAR.com and Indy.com.

Ganassi Exposure With Millennial Influencers
Ganassi Exposure With Millennial Influencers