Drive Tribe... A digital media platform for petrol heads. You join, you make a tribe, you hope others will join.
We know that quite probably Drive Tribe was not simply invented "just for us" and someone needs to get paid. In fact it is headed up by a chap called Ernesto Schmitt. German Schmitt was named as one of the richest young entrepreneurs in the UK by The Guardian in 2000, with the newspaper putting his net worth at £17 million ($22.5 million). As for Amazon, they are said to be relaxed about Jeremy Clarkson, Richard Hammond and James May setting up what could be seen as a rival motoring brand to "The Grand Tour." All I wonder is where does the payoff come from?
What is to keep you the reader coming back? The whole premise does seem to rely quite heavily on the main protagonists keeping on posting. Am sure this is great for fluffy motoring gentle banter (you guys.. sheesh) of "I don't like motorbikes, to shall I stick some stripes on my car". But that is the point isn't it? It is a case of, they are celebrity. I can't for one moment imagine that the readers will be at all excited about my individual thoughts on BGW's or what Fred has done to his car. However perhaps you would all get excited on the paint code of Nissan KH3 and if it is described as Super Black or Obsidian.
Currently we are seeing a large majority of Instagram style posts. A photo of a car. This is marvelous especially if you want to show off your pride and joy. However isn't that Instagram?... "No, no here you can see everything in a tribe, you know, like Facebook?" Umm... Of course it does not help that (this being a democracy) everyone can make a tribe (competition is good) although does dilute the content somewhat. Also the fact that this tribal system is being set up as an adversary type of system does not help anyone. Drive Tribe themselves are sending out messages like this:
"Your Tribe is roaring along, your Tribe members are flocking in and you’re busy creating awesome new stories. Fist bump the person nearest to you: life is good. What if we could make it great? Introducing the Super Heavyweight TRIBE Competition. We’re talking about a unique prize: a creative collaboration between you and the guys. Yes. Really. In early 2017, you could be working alongside them to produce a video, co-author an article or create something that no one has ever done before. So how do you win?
Here’s what we’re looking for:
Grow your Tribe faster than anyone else by adding more new members to your Tribe
Rack up a mountain of bumps and shares by posting the sort of content that has your members bumping until their fingers cramp. We’re talking about really blowing their socks off with stuff that inspires, excites and provokes them to the point of distraction.
The two best ways to do this?
Post your Tribe page link using "Share & Promote" on Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, Twitter, Instagram, email
Create and share eye-poppingly good stuff that spreads far and wide across the internet"
Nothing wrong with spamming the world to drive visitors here is there? Posting a load of individual photo's and getting people to bump them? Or reducing your article to a "Quote" and calling it an article. Add to that the imbalance of how Drive Tribe was initially set up, where some groups were sent early invites and others not, where if you get a mention from Hammond you are guaranteed a bazillion followers overnight. Who would want to be a 'Tribe Leader' anyway. Personally I can think of nothing worse than being a legend in my own mind and (like the current government) I defaulted to a position of power and respect without actually having a clue what I was on about.
So following the money: Scouring the internet (so you don't have to) the plan is to offer paid and native advertising across the site and presumably across Facebook. There's no doubt this could be a potentially very powerful tool for the automotive sector. Knowing what types of content users are engaging with, alongside all their Facebook data, will surely mean that manufacturers could easily find a valuable target audience here. They could create their own content, too, if DriveTribe eventually allows for official manufacturer accounts. I must admit at first I thought that there must be some agreement with Facebook as that was the required login path.
I don't know about the rest of you but I do seem to be getting a lot of sexy followers...
So come on. DriveTribe, is it a force of good that will take over the world or just a pile of dingos kidneys? Have your say.