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Bike Brands Now Targeting Mainstream Consumers

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In another sign of how cycling is rapidly becoming ‘mainstream’, two very different bicycle companies are both reaching out beyond the usual audience of bicycle brand marketing campaigns. 

Cannondale chose their new Adventure Neo, their lowest-priced Bosch-equipped comfort ebike, as the model to promote via a billboard campaign using iconic locations including the City of London, Times Square in New York City and downtown San Francisco.

Cannondale billboard London
This billboard in London puts a new twist on an old campaign slogan. Photo credit: Cannondale. 
This huge electronic billboard in Times Square, New York City is possibly the world’s most expensive, costing up to US$3 million per month. But Cannondale booked it for just long enough to take photos for their broader campaign. Photo credit: Cannondale 

“We are now taking a more strategic approach to reach a wider audience,” said Nick Larsen, Cannondale’s Vice President of Global Creative. 

“The objective was not to reach people on the ground. The idea was to put bicycles front and center in locations—and at a scale—where you wouldn’t normally see a bicycle advertised.” 

“If we’re going to be successful in the mobility space, we need to understand the audience and not talk about a bike’s spec, but what that bike can do for you,” said Dennis Kim, Cannondale’s Global Vice President of Marketing.  

“The bike industry usually advertises to existing cyclists, but that’s just marketing to ourselves, really. The pandemic has shown people what we’ve known all along, that cycling is liberating and yet practical; we want to emphasize that.” 

Never Too Old 

Meanwhile folding bike specialist brand Brompton has launched a unique campaign aimed at older potential cyclists. 

Despite making very small bicycles that have an equally small market share in Australia, globally Brompton is a significantly sized company by bicycle industry standards. It employs over 300 staff, making approximately 50,000 bicycles per year from their factory in London and with annual sales approaching A$100 million. 

Seeking to flip outdated stereotypes on their head and show that it really is never too late to get on a bike, Brompton’s ad campaign flips the term ‘Getting On’ to become a clarion call for all those who believe that everyone should experience the joy and freedom that a bicycle provides, whatever their age. 

Brompton Getting On campaign
Brompton have created a new meaning for the old expression, ‘I’m getting on.’ 
Photo Credit. Source: Campaign.co.uk Photographer: Spencer Murphy

Since the launch of its electric models which feature in the campaign, Brompton has seen a shift in its customer profile, with over 55% of customers aged over 55 buying Brompton electric bikes, compared to around 30% for their non-electric models. 

Christina Lindquist, Head of Marketing, Brompton Bicycle Ltd said, “We’re proud of the opportunities that our bikes give to people of all ages, and wanted to make a clear statement countering the notion that some people are ‘too old’ to cycle. 

“It’s time to end the stigma around physical activity for older generations. We know from speaking to many of our customers who are over 55, that they ride absolutely everywhere – whether it’s for errands, seeing friends and family, or exercise.” 

Brompton

Some of the Cannondale section of this article first appeared in Forbes.com and some of the Brompton section first appeared in Cycling Industry News (UK). 

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