The sharing economy puts collaboration at its heart. While in its infancy, it has been pioneered by early-innovators such as Airbnb, Taskrabbit and Easy Car Club. Its possibilities are only just being realised: from peer-to-peer property and car rental, to free libraries popping up in old phone boxes. The sharing economy is increasingly embedding a feeling of community and collaboration in our economic and social lives.

At Car Quids we’ve relied on the sharing economy to develop our inventory of over 10,000 cars. Having created this community, the next stage is collaboration: finding brands which our drivers are ready to champion on their vehicles. We want our drivers and brands to be part of the same journey to drive change.

surveying our driver community

Personalising the sharing economy

There is the risk that the sharing economy can be impersonal: that relationships can be commoditised. At Car Quids we believe that approach is not the best way to make the most of the opportunity for collaboration the sharing economy presents. We’re fostering a community – of nuclear engineers, teachers, retail workers – people from all walks of life who understand innovation and are ready to disrupt the way things are done in advertising.

When we have new campaigns, we allow our drivers to choose which ones they want to be a part of. Collaboration is about sharing more than a product or space, but the information and knowledge our drivers have. Some of our campaigns even include people who are already customers of the brand – this means they’re already passionate brand ambassadors.

Surveying our driver community

On this premise, we thought it would be fun to survey our drivers to see which brands they’d most like to promote on their vehicles. It may come as no surprise that one of the world’s best-loved brands, Apple, came out on top:

1. Apple

2. Nike

3. Samsung

4. Coca Cola

5. Google

Taking a broader look, the general trend was that most drivers were keen to advertise technology companies – top responses including Google, Samsung and Microsoft. A number of factors could explain this: perhaps the demographics and occupations of our drivers, or the fact that these are big household names.

Pie chart brands

The food and drink sector is the second most popular sector people are keen to advertise: Coca-cola, Red Bull, Pepsi. These are global giants with an outdoor advertising presence across the world – from stadiums to billboards, or sponsorship deals at international events. With this in mind, our drivers could be telling us that advertising on cars is the next step for brands who already have a strong brand awareness. People are ready for a shake-up in outdoor advertising.

Digging deeper into community trends

As you can imagine our 10,000 drivers are a diverse bunch of people, and our survey attracted a wealth of responses. We delved into the connections our drivers have with different brands. Georgie works full-time in retail and is a current driver on one of our campaigns. She says she’d love to advertise anything “for animal charities, like donkey sanctuaries, or even ZSL”. Will we see charity ambassadors in branded fleets of cars next?

Riteesh, who runs his own start-up, has told us he has a passion for sport, nutrition and health because of his background as an ex-professional athlete. His dream company to advertise on his car would be a nutrition-based start-up, like Motion Nutrition. Interestingly, what motivated Riteesh to sign up was his passion for business, and supporting other businesses. This highlights the social and collaborative aspect of the sharing economy.

What do these responses mean?

Surveying our drivers is not intended to create a scientific cross-section of society, but the responses paint an interesting picture. They tell us that there are already people willing to drive change and disrupt the outdoor advertising industry with Car Quids. The responses also tell us that our drivers are eager to see household names, as well as a variety of other brands, join the car advertising revolution.

Are our drivers already imagining a world where the iconic John Lewis Hare and the Bear adverts come to life on the streets, where the Cadbury’s drumming gorilla may whizz past you at a bus stop and the PG Tips monkey could be parked on your street as you head to work, dying for that cup of tea you missed?