Lincoln has a new gambit to regain brand awareness among luxury shoppers. It's located between a Starbucks and a spa offering a "15-minute laser and light facial."
The brand has opened a gallery called the "Lincoln Experience Center" at Fashion Island, a chic outdoor mall with towering palm trees and a dancing marble fountain in tony Newport Beach, Calif. Visitors can sit in Lincoln vehicles and explore the latest technology while sipping a complimentary tea or espresso.
Interested in taking the next step? There's a private room to Skype with a salesperson at a nearby dealership to arrange a test drive. The dealer would then handle everything related to the purchase process, so Lincoln helps provide leads but doesn't step on its retailers' toes.
"We wanted to find a way to bring the vehicle to these clients who don't currently have us on the shopping list," said Andrew Ashman, Lincoln's manager of sales operations and client experience. "When we can get the client to sit in and actually touch our vehicles, consideration jumps by 30 to 35 points."