HyundaiSmartLinks.com Showcases New, Innovative Approach to Online Vehicle Marketing

CCG.XM (www.ccgxm.com), the global provider of user-focused e-business transformations, and Hyundai Motor America today announced the launch of HyundaiSmartLinks.com, a next-generation automotive "launch site" that simultaneously serves information on Hyundai's upcoming Santa Fe sports utility vehicle while creating a unique, useful experience for the new Web user.

With personalized content, a sweeping variety of lifestyle, entertainment and informational links and upcoming online contests, HyundaiSmartLinks.com represents a substantial effort on the part of Hyundai to transform the typically staid automobile launch site into a personalized, value-added user Web experience.

Targeting not only existing Hyundai customers in the market for a new vehicle but potential purchasers as well, HyundaiSmartLinks.com offers users links to leading consumer information and content sites in the following areas: clothes, family resources, finances, homes, jobs, kids, leisure and travel. Additionally, with features such as "Your Links," "Suggest A Link" and "Send Links to a Friend," users can customize their individual content and clue friends into their new finds.

Based on End-User Understanding

The decision to create such an innovative vehicle launch site came from extensive study of Hyundai's current and target customers, undertaken to fully understand the site's eventual end-user. Based on this insight, CCG.XM conceptualized a model that would provide Web surfers with a rewarding and compelling reason to visit, and revisit, the Santa Fe launch site.

"Hyundai's customers are value-conscious consumers," said Stan Smith, Managing Director, CCG.XM Irvine. "And while in touch with consumer technology, most Hyundai owners are relatively new to the Web. With that in mind, we crafted a concept that would provide new Web users with services they would appreciate and to which they would respond."

"It's no accident that HyundaiSmartLinks.com is a deviation from the standard auto launch site," Smith added. "We invested months in understanding Hyundai's end-user, and emerged with a result that fully leverages that understanding."

"HyundaiSmartLinks.com serves as a capital opportunity to encourage visits to the Santa Fe's launch site by giving users something they actually value: content," said David Gault, Manager, Internet Marketing, Hyundai Motor America. "Today's auto purchasers are extremely media-savvy; they see through paper-thin generational advertising and marketing campaigns. Instead of luring them to the site with flashy gimmickry, we want to legitimately earn their visits with the promise - and the delivery - of quality information."

A New Model for Vehicle Launch Sites

With a user proposition unique among automotive launch sites, HyundaiSmartLinks.com breaks new ground. Vehicle launch sites typically offer product information without a compelling reason for the causal Web surfer to return; consequently, these sites become obsolete following the vehicle's introduction.

The consumer content value-adds of HyundaiSmartLinks.com not only distinguish the site from the pack of automotive launch sites, but the concept is designed to appeal to users even after the launch of the Santa Fe.

"While most car-launch sites disappear a few weeks after their vehicle's launch, we envision HyundaiSmartLinks.com living on beyond the 4th Quarter debut of the Santa Fe SUV," Smith said. "With changing, useful links, users visiting the site will continue to find a suite of new features and links. Visitors will want to return for that current, enjoyable content."

About Hyundai Motor America

Hyundai Motor America, based in Fountain Valley, Calif., is a subsidiary of Hyundai Motor Company of Korea. Hyundai cars are distributed in the United States by Hyundai Motor America and are sold and serviced through nearly 500 dealerships nationwide.

About CCG.XM

CCG.XM is a professional services firm offering solutions in e-business strategy, brand strategy, e-commerce execution, back-end network infrastructure, front-end design, and implementation--all driven by proven expertise in building customer relationships.

Operating from offices in the United States, Europe, Asia, the Middle East, and Australia, CCG.XM continues to influence the e-business revolution that is transforming industries worldwide. CCG.XM is a separate, wholly owned subsidiary of Cordiant Communications Group, the global, integrated communications organization (NYSE: CDA), with the capabilities to leverage the full resources of the parent, including the marketing, advertising, media, and research practices of Bates Worldwide.

CCG.XM has offices in New York, California, the United Kingdom, France, Belgium, Denmark, Norway, Finland, Singapore, Dubai, and Australia. Two-thirds of current revenues come from outside the United States. Clients include Compaq, Nokia, Visa, Coca-Cola, Warner Lambert, Cable & Wireless, Unilever, and Hyundai.