Mini Gets Daring with Not Normal Auction


Known for its outlandish marketing efforts, Mini is upping the stakes with a social car auction where bidders use creative thinking instead of cash. 

The latest stunt in its Not Normal campaign was born out of a poll that found that 77 percent of Brits use “creative currency” to fund purchases, with 30 percent eager to put that effort towards a new car.

“Brits are now more willing than ever to put themselves out there and to deploy unique ways to get what they want,” said Michelle Roberts, General Manager of Mini brand communications, according to The Drum. “At Mini, we find this inventive spirit really inspiring and want to celebrate and showcase it through the auction.”[more]

The gambit, which makes use of Mini’s Facebook and Twitter accounts, asks fans to come up with something creative that they’d do to get a Mini of their choice. The bids, which so far include a walk on hot coals, a Mini tattoo and a Mini-inspired name change, will be put to a vote, with winners having to complete their bids in order to get their prize. 

The untraditional auction is just the latest stunt that the company has pulled off, as earlier this year it turned its cars into a roller coaster, and over the summer, it created personalized billboards in real-time that ‘spoke’ to Mini drivers on the road. 

No stranger to non-normalcy, in fact leveraging it to the hilt, the brand turned a car into a roller coaster last month:

“The stunt was truly an unconventional and a not normal way to communicate the brand core of excitement,” said Dave Douglass, partner/ECD Anomaly, agency of record. “We hope people take away that driving a Mini is an absolutely thrilling experience and its “corners like it’s on rails” abilities are completely unlike any other car.”

Earlier this month, Mini targeted Mini drivers whizzing past billboards in London,, continuing to riff on their Not Normal launch in July:

Mini is accepting ideas through October 1 on the brand’s Facebook page,, and so far, submissions include a walk on hot coals, a MINI tattoo and a DIY build of a Mini car.

The ideas will be shortlisted and put to a public vote from October 3-10 with the winner announced on Facebook and Twitter.