Hyundai USA has created a new website called Hyundai Momentum where they purport to aggregate voices about their products from across the web. The tagline is “Everything you need to know about Hyundai. As told by everyone, except Hyundai”.
Initially, I was really excited by this.
Social media commentators have for ages been labouring the point that brands are made or broken by the public, not by the company. You should thus be listening and engaging wherever conversations about your brand are taking place away from your own website.
On the surface, the implementation of Hyundai Momentum is very attractive, using a CoolIris (formerly PicLens) style wall of thumbnails. The panel of site representations extends seemingly infinitely both left and right and the huge numbers cycling in the top left corner reinforce the message that all these external websites say good things about Hyundai.
Unfortunately, once you dig a bit deeper, it turns out this is nothing more than your standard marketing exercise:
- The seemingly millions of thumbnails repeat. A lot. I could only find 30 actual different pages from maybe a dozen websites
- All stories linked are suspiciously gushing. No dissenting voices allowed
- There is no way to filter stories. If this were really pitched as a resource for car buyers, shouldn’t you give them an option to only see stories about a particular model?
Such a good premise. Such a letdown.