Automakers, we know you have a lot of questions. We hope that the information below answers most of them. Please feel free to reach out to Eileen Falkenberg-Hull or Mike Herzing with any further questions.
What is the Texas Off-Road Invitational?
The Texas Off-Road Invitational is content generation event. The goal of the program is to present automotive journalists and content creators the opportunity to spend significant time with each test vehicle, with the specific purpose of creating content to post, pitch, sell, and distribute in the form of stores, social media posts, videos, and photographs.
How will the journalist attendees get their content?
General Sam's Offroad Park provides journalists and content creators the opportunity to create unique content in a number of challenging drive scenarios. There are also areas where photographs and videos can be staged, such as cabins, campsites, mud pits, a fording area, a sand pit, a rock climb, fields, trails, and a gravel road. Additionally, there are areas where journalists can sit and conduct interviews in the shade and tow a trailer or RV.
Ideally, journalists will be leaving the event with weeks and months worth of content about the vehicles and only thoughtfully mention the event along the way in event day coverage and social media posts.
To achieve maximum content generation value, TxMPA Is asking that each automaker have the expectation that their vehicles will not be subject to the quick turnover as achieved at other drive programs. Rather, the organization is encouraging attendees to get as much time as they require with different vehicles to create the best content. It is anticipated that this means 15-30 minutes per vehicle.
Which automaker personnel should attend?
To do achieve the level of content generation event attendees are after, TxMPA is asking automakers to not send sales professionals to the event. The Texas Off-Road Invitational is more geared toward the roles of product communications professionals, product planners, regional communications staff, and engineers as subject matter experts. Automakers are also asked to plan on not doing the usual ride along routine that is typical with drive events but are welcome to ride and drive with the journalists. TxMPA requests that automakers gear their interactions at the event toward deeper product knowledge discussion rather than the cursory product overview typical of other organization's drive events.
Do I need to be a member?
At least one representative from each automaker must be registered as Texas Motor Press Association member in order to register vehicles for the event. Click here to learn more about membership.
Who is the event open to?
The Texas Off-Road Invitational is only open to Texas Motor Press Association members. Automakers who wish to sponsor journalist attendees may do so, but those individuals will need to be approved of as Texas Motor Press Association members and paid their dues at least two weeks prior to the event.
Journalists who are not able to commit to coverage of the vehicles at the event will be asked to not attend as the organization strives to have the largest return on investment for all attendees.
Driving priority will be given to automotive journalists and top-tier content creators. Other attendees will be able to tag along and team up to create their content.
Prior to the event, registered automakers will receive a list of all registered journalist attendees so they can reach out to them to pitch stories and let attendees know of their personnel attending ahead of the event so journalists arrive on-site fully prepared for all that is offered.
Can I preview the venue?
Of course! Automaker representatives who wish to tour the site of the Texas Off-Road Invitational ahead of the event should contact Texas Motor Press Association president Mike Herzing to arrange a time to do so.
Can I create my own course?
Sure! TxMPA is open to creating demonstrations of vehicle capabilities that are beneficial to all attendees.
What should I wear?
Jeans, shorts, t-shirts, and polo shirts are acceptable for all activities. Closed toe shoes are recommended. Attendees should anticipate that the event activities will leave them with dirt and mud on their clothing.
The first night's dinner is the Texas Tailgate. Attendees are encouraged to wear Texas themed casual apparel.
What vehicles can I bring?
Automakers are welcome bring to vehicles that are specially made for the event, marketing vehicles, or fleet vehicles to the event.
Will there be awards presented?
Voting members of the Texas Motor Press Association will cast ballots to honor attendees with four trophies:
- Texas Off-Road Truck of the Year
- Texas Off-Road SUV of the Year
- Texas Off-Road ATV of the Year
- Texas Off-Road UTV of the Year
Awards will be presented at the lunch on the final day of the event.
How much does it cost?
It is the goal of TxMPA to make the event as accessible to automakers as possible and keep costs at a minimum. Therefore we are able to charge much less than what other organizations charge for their events. A list of costs is below.
Content Creation Vehicle Entry - $750/vehicle
Demonstration Vehicle Entry - $500/vehicle
Display Vehicle Entry - $500/vehicle
Content Creation UTV or ATV Entry - $400/vehicle
Demonstration UTV or ATV Entry - $150/vehicle
Display UTV or ATV Entry - $150/vehicle
Can I hire a company to care for my vehicles on site during the event?
Automakers may hire concierge companies like DriveShop, Prestige Auto, and Motus1 to tend to their vehicles throughout the event days. If this is a route you'd like to take, please note that at least one representative from the company must be a TxMPA industry member. If you go this route, please let Mike Herzing know so that she can coordinate access to the site and go over the facilities available with you.