We love spotting new Klout Stars. They’ve perfected increasing their impact online by creating great content. Recently, Alex Stojkovic caught our attention as a standout user. Alex, a Toronto, Canada resident, is a self-described “forty-something communication and online evangelist who eats, sleeps and breathes everything to do with marketing, web and print.”
As a social media influencer of marketing, SEO and graphic design topics, Alex was Klout “Perked” with a 2014 Cadillac CTS delivered to his house to drive for three days. He was then part of a select handful invited to the Cadillac Driver Academy event at Canadian Tire Motorsport Park’s famed race track for the thrill of a lifetime. The full-day session featured driving skill development exercises and 1-on-1 track lapping in a Cadillac-supplied, track-ready CTS twin-turbo vehicle complete with highly skilled and experienced driving coaches, as well as lunch with executives from Klout.
We spoke with Alex about his exciting journey with Cadillac and his thoughts on using social media.
I generate content to educate people and keep myself on the pulse of what is happening. I love the interaction I get when I put content out—everything from thank you’s, to “great idea,” to critical analysis by individual heavyweights who say, “I disagree with you and this is why.” This only makes me a better marketer when I see all points of view. It broadens my knowledge. So that motivates me.
I love learning about and staying on the cutting-edge of the brands I love—for example, I always know what’s happening with Apple, which is one of the brands I’m passionate about. This allows me to educate myself of the goings-on with Apple and share my love of them with family, friends and co-workers.
I also love social media because brands can interact on a one-on-one basis with their end-users. Cadillac handwrote a personalized note to me with a felt tip marker and tweeted it- I was absolutely amazed. I feel like I’m special to Cadillac – feeling special to a massive brand like Cadillac– that’s amazing. They’re able to breakthrough that ideology that we’re all numbers to these big brands. So what motivates me to engage? I’m now a voice and they recognize me. And social media allows them to reach out to their ambassadors.
I’m a big techno geek and gear head– that CTS was stunning. I drive a $35-40k vehicle, nothing special. Just to be given this to test drive for three days—it was an overwhelming experience. The first day I got the car, my girlfriend and I packed up and went to Niagara on the Lake. It was a beautiful fall day to drive through that area. The CTS made a mean sort of grunt when hitting 6,000 rpm. It was sheer entertainment. It sounded like Chewbacca was stuck in the trunk—an on-going joke between us now. I completely appreciate what this car can do. And when we pulled up at our hotel in a beautiful CTS, the doorman jumped out and said, “stop- you park over there,” pointing to the front section that was reserved for nice cars. I’m middle of the road, white collar, I don’t live like the Joneses. People were stopping me and saying, “Hey what’s that? That’s a great looking vehicle.” I took a pic and tweeted it saying, “Membership into an exclusive club has its privileges”.
From a purchasing standpoint, I never would’ve considered buying a Cadillac prior to this. There’s the 80’s stereotype of “this is something your grandpa would own.” After my personal experience with Cadillac, hands down I would love to own a Cadillac CTS right now. The $75k price tag is more than I can afford but the ATS I would definitely consider. I had always bought Toyota, Hyundai, Lexus- I’ve always been a Japanese car guy. Next time I purchase a car in a couple of years, I will strongly consider Cadillac. My friend Frank whom I brought with me to the Cadillac Driver Academy event drives a high-end Mercedes and said without a shadow of a doubt, he will consider a Cadillac for his next purchase. My feeling of the brand—OMG, I’m speechless.
One of my passions is motorcycle driving, so I was very familiar with the racetrack. Being on the track with a very capable vehicle brought out the little kid in me. I can drive it as fast as I want. From an educational perspective, the experience definitely improved my driving skills. The CTS is one helluva vehicle. It’s a monster. It’s definitely an engineering piece of profession. I’m speechless what the CTS can do on four wheels.
Get out there. Engage. We all have opinions- whether they’re right, whether they’re wrong. To be successful in an online world and in a Klout world, voice your opinion (of course you need to be somewhat tactful in your delivery) and engage. Brands and companies are desperate to get the most pure form of data on how people interpret their brand and they want to build brand awareness. I’m converted to Cadillac; prior to this Klout Perk I wouldn’t have thought of Cadillac as a brand for me.
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