With nearly all its competitors using sports as their go-to sponsorship platform, Cadillac has opted for a slightly less traveled road.

The luxury vehicle maker has placed more focus on arts and culture since relaunching its brand and moving its headquarters to New York City in 2015.

Cadillac has dropped its involvement in golf because of the shift, including its sponsorship of the World Golf Championships—Cadillac Championship.

“Cadillac has moved away from golf, where our competitors are focused, and doubled down on art, fashion, travel and entertainment. Cadillac has always been a pop culture muse and icon and the brand can leverage that equity in a new way by committing to the arts and culture, areas of high interest to our target audience,” said Katie Kim, Cadillac manager of brand partnerships and experiences. 

Cadillac uses the arts to engage Gen X and Gen Y luxury vehicle consumers, as well as non-luxury consumers moving up into luxury, she said.

Recent partnerships span digital publishers, record labels, fashion designers and streaming video services. Those include Gwyneth Paltrow’s Goop, Global Citizen, Republic Records and Apple Music’s Car Karaoke: The Series.

Cadillac uses the partnerships to reach cultural tastemakers, highlight product in an immersive and/or organic way, and showcase cultural relevancy. 

Cadillac’s partnership with Goop provides access to an affluent female demographic who represent luxury vehicle conquests. Cadillac leverages the tie with cobranded content and experiential programs such as “Road to Table,” a farm-to-table drive and dining experience.

Cadillac uses Global Citizen to promote its shared values with Millennials. The automaker kicked off the partnership in August with the “Accelerator Series,” a set of exclusive music performances at the Cadillac House, the automaker’s brand experience center in New York City.

Cadillac uses the performances (Charlie Puth, Andra Day, etc.) to honor social entrepreneurs “driving systematic change and creating solutions to global platforms.”

Product integration also plays a key role in Cadillac’s sponsorship strategy. The automaker uses Carpool Karaoke: The Series to weave together Cadillac vehicles and pop culture content.

“Cadillac's marketing strategy of outwitting our competitors, and of disrupting, intriguing, and sparking a conversation is reflected in our approach to sponsorship,” said Kim.

And the company has seen success from the partnerships.

“Brand partnerships and experiential marketing are one of the most effective tools to impact brand awareness and especially brand relevance, our more upper funnel metrics. We have seen measurable impact of our sponsorships on brand health metrics including brand opinion and brand consideration lift, with a long tail effect and not merely temporary excitement after an event.”

The automaker’s sponsorship strategy may soon take another turn following the January 2017 launch of BOOK by Cadillac, a subscription-based concierge service. Members can use the service to access any vehicle they want, whenever they want, in exchange for a monthly fee.

“We currently focus our sponsorships on the overall brand, and less so on specific product technology. With BOOK by Cadillac as a major new initiative, however, we anticipate finding innovative new ways to present this new ownership model through sponsorships and partnerships.”

Other Cadillac partnerships include The Andy Warhol Museum, Visionaire, Council of Fashion Designers of America, Jason Wu, American Black Film Festival, Pebble Beach Concours d ’Elegance, Blade, Inspirato and more than a dozen hotels.

The automaker also leverages media partnerships with experiential marketing programs. Those include the Oscars, MTV VMAs (with Republic Records), Refinery29’s 29Rooms and the ESPYs.