The brief

NIO has become a leading electric car brand in the few years since its founding in 2014. Focused on providing high performance products, the marque aims to make a big impact with its marketing approach of catering to a ‘pleasurable lifestyle’.

In December 2017, Pico was commissioned by NIO to create a special event in Suzhou, China, aiming to interact with prospective customers in a way that reflected the brand’s values and aspirations.


Taking inspiration from NIO’s zero-emissions vehicle technology as well as the scenic nature of Suzhou itself, the team proposed a ‘fun run’ which would promote good health and environmental awareness among participants from across the community. It was an ideal means to bring prospective customers to NIO values.

Creative Execution

A total of 500 runners converged on Stone Lake Park in Suzhou to register for the day’s event. Spectators at the starting line meanwhile entertained themselves with engaging photo opportunities, balloon sculpture and oil painting demonstrations. A dedicated children’s zone featured such absorbing activities as interactive picture colouring using augmented reality technology. Participants could scan their work and animate it using a specially created NIO app.

Another objective of the app was to reinforce NIO’s environmentally friendly message by awarding points for completing tasks like collecting recyclable bottles.


As well as introducing participants and spectators to the NIO brand in a memorable and rewarding way, the event also attracted local media – with some members opting to participate in the run themselves. The outcome was wide and extremely positive and engaging coverage of the essence of the NIO brand.