His idea was simple and fun: the Speed Camera Lottery. Getting people to obey the speed limit for fun. It was a simple idea with fantastic results.
Every time someone would drive past the Speed Lottery sign, their photo would be taken. Speeders would pay a fine into a lottery while the obeyers would each win money from the pot. During the experiment, the average speed was reduced 22%. Success!
This initiative provided VW the opportunity to work closely with their (potential) customers and let them know that they care about the environment and of course, having fun. Customers could interact closely with a brand while gaining trust that they are supporting an innovative and compassionate company.
Brands that are constantly on the negative end of consumer opinion, like Monsanto or Comcast, may be able to gain consumer trust by supporting or leading positive initiatives that directly involve the customer. These projects could help those companies move towards 'better customer vibes' and relations.