Silver at 2021 World Exhibition Stand Awards



The Brief

The National Automotive Parts Association (NAPA), America’s leading brand in auto parts, pulls out the stops every five years to execute an epic event: the NAPA AUTO PARTS EXPO (the EXPO). Attracting 20,000 vendors, store owners, and NAPA AutoCare professionals, the EXPO is one of NAPA’s most powerful engines to generate buzz, build relationships and drive bottom-line results. For the 2020 EXPO, NAPA brands were aiming for an undeniable wow-factor and impact, collaborating with their trusted partner 2020 Exhibits in the creation of 27 EXPO exhibits – some as large as 100′ x 100′ and 130′ x 140′ – covering over 51,000sf of the EXPO’s massive 522,733sf footprint. But with only months until showtime, COVID-19 and a global pandemic slammed the brakes and closed down the 2020 EXPO. With uncertainty looming and no road map to the next iteration of EXPO, NAPA brands were losing steam. The clock was ticking. 2020 Exhibits took the wheel, asking one aspirational yet straightforward question: What if? What if we move NAPA brands away from uncertainty in the physical into a hybrid method of thinking, combining digital aspects like video, motion, and digital to drive brand value and promote product stories and training?

The Solution and Activation

What if, indeed. Skeptical at first, NAPA brands wondered: could it work? So, 2020 Exhibits pivoted, becoming its own case study by turning their 13,000sf Houston showroom into a dynamic, broadcast-quality Virtual Event Studio (VES). With an interactive array of high-tech video screens and a custom studio set as the backdrop, the VES set the stage for a 2020 Exhibits in-studio live webinar event. With COVID safety protocol in place, the live event included training and engagement with one host, three in-studio guest panelists, and a 4-person camera crew shooting and broadcasting via Zoom webinar. In the end, 2020 Exhibits showcased and shared the digital possibilities with NAPA through the delivery of custom 4-D broadcast-quality video packages and a robust strategy and game plan. Lightbulb moment. NAPA envisioned the possibilities for new and different ways to put their latest products, services, and promotions in front of their distributors operating in this virtual world. Leaning heavily into 2020 Exhibits digital innovation, NAPA Brakes would no longer be restricted and confined by finite event show dates. Still, instead, they could expand their reach and the NAPA experience with a never-ending virtual conference experience backed with metrics, dynamic content, and collaboration. Flag raised, the race was on to deliver The NAPA Brakes Virtual Experience. Most critically, NAPA wanted to push forward their promotions and plans for the year while effectively showcasing and promoting new products and modifications to their quarterly product offerings. Additionally, it served as a tool to bridge the communication gap between NAPA and their remote teams and, ultimately, their client base during the never-ending delay until the EXPO. 2020 Exhibits leveraged its creative and digital expertise to deliver a content-rich training and educational virtual brand experience and ecosystem for the Brakes Training Summit. 2020 Exhibits elevated the NAPA experience through the design, programming, and delivery of a robust, dynamic virtual presence in the form of – welcome to the “new” captive showroom floor. With over 1,500 registrants to date, this password-protected site delivers real-time data and metrics to NAPA, informing their decision-making, ongoing marketing and promotions, and, ultimately, their bottom line. Programming includes training and educational videos shot and produced at the 2020 Exhibits VES. High tech, professional and polished are core drivers for all video content, including NAPA’s sales training videos, corporate messages, programs, promotions, and announcements. Over two full-day video shoots, 2020 Exhibits managed the live videotaping for NAPA representatives with one NAPA rep operating remotely, recording content locally via 2020 Exhibits’ “Studio in a Box,” a virtual taping solution. In total, ten NAPA C-Suite executives were in Houston, with a full video and production crew supporting the effort. With full brand integration throughout, two NAPA Studios were designed with “STUDIO A” housing NAPA EXPO Kiosks and products, and “STUDIO B” showcasing a massive LED wall that featured other videos produced for NAPA by 2020 Exhibits. Additionally, 15 promotional videos and 14 training videos resulted from the marathon production, expanding NAPA’s reach beyond the website to ongoing training and education for company-wide virtual Microsoft Team meetings.

The Results

Shifting the view kept the wheels in motion for NAPA with engaging, compelling ways to create value, deliver results, and showcase products and services in a new and different way. With the checkered flag raised, the race is still on, and the campaign/project continues to be a resounding success, delivering tangible opportunity and returns. With over 1,500 registrants to date, this password-protected site delivers real-time data and metrics to NAPA, informing their decision-making, ongoing marketing and promotions, and, ultimately, their bottom line. Extending the video content reach beyond the website, NAPA now uses training, and educational videos shot and produced at the 2020 Exhibits VES for internal team training and education. Sharing videos with all of their divisions in several company-wide Microsoft Teams meetings. Video content on the site has over 6.5k views, with metrics tracking view time and engagement. In addition, the NAPA sales team now uses virtual training and engagement to influence deals, driving sales into the pipeline. Anecdotal evidence supports this success with comments such as, “you made it so easy to make buying decisions – right from the work-from-home office.” A fully branded digital content ecosystem that includes the 15 promotional videos and 14 training videos housed on the branded site gives the sales team a strategic yet straightforward way to initiate brand conversations, helping to build relationships. On the back end, metrics show engagement rate up to 86% in some content, with the highest video play rate at 59%.