Motor Culture Australia is a remarkable success story, evolved from the seed of an idea that occurred to founder Tom McPherson and Thomas Fu in 2017. As a car enthusiast who regularly attended car shows and meets, McPherson was disturbed by the negativity, bullying and unsafe behavior that he witnessed at these events. With the help of a friend from high school, he decided to create a community in which people could feel safe and simply share their love of cars without fear of recrimination.
Motor Culture Australia was born in 2018 with an in-house membership platform, an idea that people seemed to appreciate. Over the next couple of years the platform started diversifying, and now offers a wide range of valuable and successful programs. The company now boasts a strong membership base of over 100,000 people and is the most diverse automotive community in the country.
Having grown from zero to over 100,000 members within eight short months is quite an achievement and it was no fluke. McPherson is well aware of how he achieved his success, and has a few pointers for anyone just starting out with their own brand.
1. Be passionate about your industry
"It's important that you love what you do," says McPherson. "If you don't really understand the industry you're working in, you can't be authentic and people will see through that."
McPherson himself grew up immersed in his love for all things cars, along with many of his countrymen and women. His shared passion is what helps him understand the needs of his members and customers.
2. Listen to and understand the consumer
In any niche or industry, customers are going to have their own issues and preferences. Although there may be some common concerns and preferences, not all customers are alike. McPherson says this is particularly true of the Australian automotive scene, where consumers share a common passion for cars, with widely varying preferences for brands and makes.
"I make a point of being inclusive by catering to all tastes and preferences," he says.
3. Take your business online and create an online presence
Motor Culture Australia started its journey on Instagram, where McPherson posted photos to get the word out. Since then, the team has put a lot of hard work and effort into social media postings. They reach over five million people per month and have accumulated tens of thousands of followers.
"Invest in social media," McPherson advises. "It's well worth it!"
4. Be different
McPherson knew that in such a competitive industry, he needed to stand out from the crowd and offer something different. His goal was to form a genuine relationship with members and create a real culture with a difference.
"I always try to push the boundaries and set trends in the industry by doing things no-one else has done."
5. Build a brand that people associate with trust and respect
The company prides itself on its willingness to give back to the community and inspiring others by creating a safe and positive brand.
"We make a point of giving back. And we've single-handedly brought compassion and community to the automotive industry."