The objectives of the communication campaign consisted of defusing the criticism surrounding e-scooters while simultaneously increasing awareness of the Lime brand. The objectives also included explaining its e-scooters transparently while establishing an authentic image that sets the brand apart from its competition. In the course of the media relations campaign, we defined four strategic focal topics for the agenda setting process: 1. Twinning city launches, 2. Road safety, 3. Transparency of the company and product and 4. The overall vision of urban micromobility.
Despite the flood of daily press enquiries (amounting to approximate 3-4 separate enquiries per hour), we also implemented our own specific focal areas: We supported the city launches on location while simultaneously establishing the Lime driving safety training seminars as events for consumers and the media. We presented the Lime and its e-scooter product transparently utilising data PR and media tours of the Lime logistics centres in order to present the product-related processes. We conducted media trainings with Lime “Juicers” – freelancers who collect and charge e-scooters – and connected them with journalists in order improve their negative image. This little authentic coverage that also diffused the critics’ claims. Furthermore, we positioned the head of Lime Germany, Jashar Seyfi, as the authentic face of the brand through interviews in the German media, in order to make the brand more tangible.
After three months of the campaign, we had already achieved approximately 1,000 clippings on TV, radio, print and online, handled almost 700 press enquiries, published 15 press releases and conducted more than 50 interviews. In addition to the visible success with over 300 media publications between September and the end of the year, a study in November 2019 revealed that, despite domestic competition, Lime had successfully become by far the best-known e-scooter rental company in Germany and also one of the most positively reviewed brands from the previous summer.
We supported Lime’s positioning as a first mover through
proactive communication of the scooter safety training and by targeting of consumer media;
data-driven PR to rebut criticism and educate the public about the e-scooter product;
positioning of the head of Lime Germany, Jashar Seyfi, and establishing contact between the media and “Juicers” in order establish an authentic image for the brand.