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Whetting the appetite

Within the automotive industry, the subject of Alternative Fuels is of ever-increasing importance. With changes in legislation forcing the hand of production, manufacturers are embracing the technologies behind ‘greener’ methods of travel – but there is a lot to learn.

Kia have recently launched an ‘Alternative Fuels’ Instructor-based workshop, which takes place over two days and educates learners to a high level on all aspects of alternative fuel types – what they are, their benefits (for the environment and the customer), and why is it so important that they are embraced worldwide. However, they found that people were attending the course with very different levels of base knowledge, which presented some difficulties for the trainers in pitching the training materials at the right level.

Kia therefore requested a training course from the team at mobedia which provided staff a ‘ground level’ knowledge-base in Alternative Fuels, with the aim of encouraging staff to attend the two-day workshop to further enhance their learning.

Stuff We Did:
  • Became subject matter experts by attending the workshop to gain an in-depth knowledge of the content; then ‘scaled it back’ to an introductory level
  • Delivered a large quantity of complex information in an engaging and informative way by keeping content punchy and straightforward
  • Designed a sophisticated, interactive eLearning course structured to retain high levels of learner engagement and retention of facts and benefits
  • Created a course that directly supported a wider curriculum of learning to sit within our client’s Training Academy

Feature, Function, Benefit: bringing facts to life

There is a lot of information out there about Alternative Fuels. Seriously. EVs, HEVs, PHEVs… there is so much to learn about them that it can be overwhelming to start off with – especially when you couple that with all the legal mumbo jumbo flying around – sale of certain vehicles being banned by 2050, carbon emission reduction targets, Air Quality Plans… and that’s before you even teach people how to charge up their cars.

As we started looking into this course, we very quickly realised that we had to find a way to present the relevant facts not only clearly (that’s a given), but in a way that got people interested.

Where possible, then, we used the tried-and-tested marketing method of ‘Feature, Function, Benefit’ (FFB): What is it? What does it do? And why is that so great!

FFB is generally found within a Sales environment, often used as a tool to keep sales executives on track when trying to persuade a customer to buy in to a product. Customers like benefits – especially ones that apply to them. We’re all more interested in something if it has a directly positive effect on our own lives.

Okay, so we’re not selling a product here, but our aim is to get learners to buy in to facts and ideas – and, in a way similar to a product they might buy, we want them to keep these ideas with them and share them, passionately, with others. So following the FFB method helps. It makes sure we follow a clean and structured explanation process, which helps when presenting complex facts.

Short and snappy

Something else we had to bear in mind was that the course duration was only 10 minutes. When you’ve got so much information to channel into a course, this can feel a little daunting. Scriptwriter Jen talks about how this can be a challenge – in general and personally.

When you’ve a lot of information to get across, and only a short period of time to do it in – it becomes a careful balancing act, of trimming content in the right ways so that crucial info doesn’t get lost. It’s still got to be in-depth enough that learners come away having actually learned something, but has to move quickly enough to cover all the ground in a short space of time. I like to take my time with sentences, so it was a bit of a personal challenge for me… luckily my boss Gary (mobedia’s Creative Director) has the great approach of “Show, don’t tell!” so I have learned a lot from him about how we can use the screen to show information without it being said aloud. People take stuff in with their ears and their eyes simultaneously. This way, we’re able to condense a large amount of content into a short, sharp and effective 10 minute course.

A fitting design

In keeping with the theme of environmental sustainability, we took inspiration from the dashboard tree that grows on the Kia Niro, and built in an ‘Eco-Points’ system, so learners could collect points as they learned new facts.

We wanted to stress that Alternative Fuels really do have a positive and long-lasting effect on the environment. So we opted for a cool, calming colour-palette throughout the course, for a sense of tranquility and natural peace. We broke the course up with lots of interactivity – not just boring old hotspots, but useful interactive elements – dragging the charger on to the car’s charge-port, for example, so learners had a practical understanding of where the charge-port was!

As always, Guy Harris provided us with a fantastic quality voiceover, with complex information being delivered in a friendly, relatable tone. And, of course, we rounded the training off with a strong call to action. A video encouraging staff to register on the Kia Alternative Fuels IBT, challenging them to become experts in the subject.

The result

When you’ve built up a strong, positive relationship with a client over a few years, you get better and better at delivering stuff exactly how they want it. You know them.

So when our we had Version 1 sign-off for this project (i.e. our client was happy and no amends required), we were delighted – as it showed not only had we delivered a fantastic product, but that our working relationship with Kia continues as a healthy one. The feedback was as short and snappy as the content – but it said all it needed to say: “Approved – lovely looking piece of work!”

With a creative team encompassing video, animation and design, see how we can produce innovative, far-reaching digital content for you and your brand.

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