Karting Marketing Discussion

Here’s my two-cents based on what I’ve seen from marketing the OVKA Swap Meet:

Meta Advertising (Facebook/Instagram) can be useful, but it helps to know your audience.

75% of your Facebook traffic audience will be 45+ year-olds, so it may help attract Masters Age drivers, or be useful to attract spectators that may bring families, but young racers aren’t spending any time there.

Instagram trends younger (18-40 year olds) and posting consistently, 10-30 second reels every other day or so, with high quality video of the racing may help attract younger racers or racing families, especially if you boost the posts.

TikTok is fine to repost the reels from instagram to, but paid advertising there is really hit or miss, and you’re really only reaching the younger drivers there anyway. If you make some cool reels of the racing footage that actually do the rounds you may get some kids asking their parents to do the race.

YouTube highlight videos or official onboards can go a long way to attracting racers. A well produced highlight video showing the racing as well as the festival atmosphere can also help build the hype among racers and businesses in the lead-up to the next event.

As far as working with local businesses, make sure they get plenty of opportunities to get their logos on different media: banners, flyers, coozies, whatever you make. And make sure to get them highlighted on social media as well, so they have something to share out to wider audiences.

I think the comment that the Race Coordinators need to be separate from the Marketing (yet work together) is spot on. The Race obviously drives everything, and needs to come first and have quality organization, marshalling, officiating, tech, etc to maintain credibility and continue to draw serious competitors. Rising tides raise all boats, and a big, well run race will bring people no matter what.


All good points thanks.

I’m curious to read more about this… Are you speaking to the stats on the pages you manage specifically?

Yeah, from what I’ve seen managing OVKA / OVKA Swap Meet, nearly every karting ad on facebook we’ve done for the past year has received a viewership breakdown that looks like this, regardless of tweaking the target parameters (or letting it do its own algorithmic targeting based on page interactions).

And even just anecdotally, the 18-24 bracket just spends their time elsewhere online. And if you’re trying to get Sportsman/Junior aged drivers excited to come race, you’re more likely to reach them via Reels/TikTok/YouTube



I’ve heard this before but never with any facts to back it up. Thanks!

I think maybe the key realization here is user base composition != actual engagement or use of the platform.

I’ve also heard for years that Facebook is “now for old people”

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Is it not? I have given up on it, is there a reason to still use it? (Masters rentals?)

It seems to me that all of the karting is Insta. The few karting posts I make there seem to land in the karting community.

Not saying it’s incorrect. But as another commenter stated anecdotal comments don’t always measure up to fact.

The other thing to consider is karting is not as direct of a customer base as some other markets because the financial decision maker is often different than the participant.

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Good point. I forget I am that. Both.

And I am a boomer. Sort of.

The “Facebook is for old people” idea is where I think many mistakes are being made. I shouldn’t complain because it makes Facebook ads absolute gold for me in pursuing young audience…

Consider the tools and the “kind of engagement” facebook offers. Then look at audience insights and filter for age. In my experience the number that shows is DEFINITELY worth pursuing.

35% being “young” is still almost 100M users in the US. You can’t tell me that isn’t worth pursuing… especially when you consider the kind of engagement you’ll get on FB vs IG and TikTok. How many times have you seen videos and pics on the latter with millions of views… zero purchases. Great thing about IG is you can compare and contrast the results with FB.

Don’t get me wrong, there’s some utility to straight exposure… but it’s limited in my view especially for content that just doesnt carry organically.

Gather, then interrogate your own data. Segment it and analyze it. In karting this is particularly crucial because its such a microscopic niche.

Oddly, Google maps reviews are a freaking goldmine. I did one or two and whoa! Massive audience.

That’s a good point. When I did the track directory in… 2015ish there were about 20 tracks not listed on google business\maps. Each on I added has got something in and around six figures of views.

Our track (Fremont OH) communicates via FB; my 20something son counts on me for race schedules, rain delays/cancellations and so on because he almost never logs on to FB. He too says FB is for old people. However, he is forever showing funny videos and memes on IG and TikTok to his slightly younger 20something sister. There’s another data point for the FB is for old people hypothesis… :person_with_white_cane:

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Can confirm, zero of the “kids” In my family use Facebook. That is 23 and younger on ages.

All kinds of motorsport at the grassroots level is like that unfortunately. When I was active in the SCCA we called it the “Secret Car Club of America”. It was difficult to get exposure and you felt like you were preaching to the choir.

Our kids raced quarter midgets at a track in the town where we live. Convenient, right? The club did two “test drive” events a year where kids showed up, paid $15 and got to drive 10 laps in a race car. We found the best outreach was when we entered a float with car and driver on it in a local Summer Fair type parade. We had moms and other drivers in their race suits handing out flyers advertising the event. The club would schedule one of the test drives a week or so after the parade, we’d get up to 40 kids at the event. That usually translated to one or two new members. We’d also have cars displayed at the local asphalt 1/2 mile track when they held what they called their “Nights of Destruction” (i.e. bus demolition derbies on the figure eight track in the infield). This kind of thing can be hard to do during the racing season though. The thing that really got people interested was when they could see a real race car and actually sit in it. That was more real and engaging than any of the videos of races we had playing.

That tracks… our kids are 22 and 24.

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Not to belabor the point, but I’d encourage anyone that’s subscribing to the mantra that “Facebook is for old people” to ask themselves if that is serving their goals.

If I’m trying to reach new people, I’d rather rely on data than anecdotes.

$10 to drive a racecar is insane to me. I think it massively undermines the value proposition of what it is and causes a lead qualifying problem. Attracting the right people (ie the people that are more likely to see the VALUE and can afford the COST). Not saying it’s impossible to attract those with a $10 offer…. But Id rather hedge my bets with an offer (call it a lead gen) that’s both higher cost and value.

Then again, if it works and one’s happy with the results, keep doing it.

In the scheme of things I think karting is particularly invisible. If you think of a hierarchy of interest/popularity, karting is minuscule.

Any motorsport interest whatsoever.
“Professional oval racing. Ie NASCAR)
Dirt\oval racing
Road course racing

I’m a member of the SCCA FB groups for sheer entertainment for the amount of complaining without ownership that goes on.

That said, if you look at the SCCA’s FB page you’ll probably see they are running ads. At least any time I checked, there were. So it make me wonder where the disconnect is for them.

Live streaming comes up in those groups so much it’s practically a meme, yet nobody asking the question has stopped to think if it’s worth $20,000+ to get <4000 impressions. The truth is that live steaming is a vanity driven value add
for the racers…. and the racers won’t pay for it :laughing:

Marco Oldhaffer did this up his way and the photos were great. I bet it was a success.

What I think happens with FB and the young crowd is they don’t say they go to it because it isn’t cool to say As a “test” I just went to FB messenger and 5 of the 10 people it shows online are under 23.

Science! Well not really but just another thing to muddy the convo… :laughing:

Side note and something I really think is a factor in race attendance is the racers themselves. Most any time you see any posts about Rock it’s, I broke this, I trashed a chassis, so and so got hurt, you’ve got to be a real man to race it….

None of the above is going to get an on the fence racer to attend. Racers are our own worst enemies.

Using FB and having Messenger are different things. All the kids have Messenger to talk to us old people, but do not use Facebook.

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