Tag Archives: BMW

The Best Global Auto Ads

Drum roll, please.

The One Club today revealed the best international auto advertising  during the press days of the North American International Auto Show in Detroit.

The non-profit group, dedicated to recognizing advertising creativity, honored winners of the Automotive Advertising of the Year Awards.

BEST PRINT-OUTDOOR

Fiat and its Brazilian shop Leo Burnett Tailor in Sao Paulo topped the print-outdoor category. Their winning campaign, dubbed “Letters,” carried the safety message, warning of the dangers of texting while driving. The stark ads showed letters of the alphabet and used the negative space around the letters for people or things a driver might not see while texting and driving.

FiatOneShowWinnerThe One Club received 550 entries for all categories, which were rated in two rounds on a scale of 1-to-10 by a panel of 50 creative directors and journalists, including myself. Judges were to consider the originality of the ads, whether the work moves the brand forward and whether it creates high brand recall. The One Club said near the end of the second and final round of judging that the scores of the 56 semi-finalists were “very close.”

BEST ONLINE VIDEO

Honda Motor Co. Ltd. in Japan bested the online video category with its 1:29 short film from Dentsu in Tokyo called “Sound of Honda/Ayrton Senna 1989.” The video honors Senna, the late, legendary F1 race car driver and his fastest lap in 1989, when he set the world record qualifying for the Japanese Grand Prix on the Suzuka circuit. Thanks to Honda in-vehicle technology, first introduced in the ’80s and used in Senna’s famous lap, the automaker was able to recreate that famous lap using engine sounds and LED lights at the Suzuki Circuit.

It may seem a big geeky, but it’s very cool.

Honda said it got more than 2 million views from Brazil, the US, Japan and the rest of world in just 2 months. Senna, a Brazilian, died 19 years ago after a crash during the San Marino Grand Prix. He drove a Honda-powered car for the Marlboro McLaren team in all 3 of his World Champion titles.

Last month, this video won the Grand Prize for the Entertainment Division of the 17th Japan Media Arts Festival.

BEST EXPERIENTIAL

BMW North America tied with Toyota Motor Sales USA’s Toyota Division in this category.

BMW wanted to build awareness for its upcoming, futuristic new i electric sub brand. BMWoneshowWinner2

Working with its agency, kbs+ in Manhattan, BMW created a digital storefront “Window Into the Near Future” at street level in New York City. As cars passed in the window’s reflection, they were turned into BMW’s i3 and plug-in hybrid BMW i8 concept vehicles.

Toyota wanted to show bust the misperception that its Tundra pickup wasn’t as tough as its rivals from Detroit. Toyota and its ad agency, Saatchi & Saatchi in Los Angeles, partnered in a unique opportunity – using the Tundra to tow the 300,000-pound Space Shuttle Endeavour to its new home at the California Science Center in Los Angeles.

Toyota got the word out with online videos and TV ads, which generated tons of news media coverage and social media buzz. Thousands of people lined the streets of Los Angeles to watch the pickup tow the shuttle a quarter-mile to the Science Center.

The Tundra Endeavour Campaign generated 131 million Twitter impressions, a billion unpaid media impressions and Tundra sales jumped by 31%. A Twitter drive raised more than $400,000 for the Science Center.

BEST INTERACTIVE

Hyundai Motor America found a way to spread the word about 2 new Elantra models, the Coupe and the GT. Hyundai’s ad agency, Innocean USA in Huntington Beach, California, created the “Driveway Decision Maker.”

Consumers could choose an Elantra to take on a virtual test drive through a colorful digital world and land in their own driveway. Using  Google Street View, people could also see the Elantra in front of any location in the world, including the Eiffel Tower in Paris.

Hyundai said the effort helped lift Elantra to the brand’s best-selling model.

BEST TELEVISION

Honda and Wieden+Kennedy in London hit another one out of the park in Europe with a clever corporate ad that showed off the company’s innovation and products.

The “Hands” film, aimed at the UK,  is simply a delight to watch and was one I highly praised here in AutoAdOpolis last September.

The film went viral and has already tallied more than 10-million views on You Tube.

People’s Choice

Nearly 20,000 visitors to The One Club’s site tapped Honda Motor Europe’s “Illusions” TV spot as Public Choice winner. Created by McGarryBowen in London, the ad for the launch of Honda’s CR-V 1.6 Diesel showed a montage of optical illusions to position the SUV as a big car experience with smaller car costs.

Bravo to all the winners!

Last year was the first year The One Club honored top car advertising during the press days of the North American International Auto Show in Detroit. In 2012, the group presented awards to the top 10 ads from the prior 25 years.
MAKING TRACKS: Congrats to Paul Edwards,  promoted at General Motors to VP of Chevrolet marketing in the US. Edwards, 44, had been executive director of GM’s global marketing since 2010. He joined GM in 1992 and succeeds Chris Perry, who resigned.
MAKING TRACKS II: Mike Jackson, has been named to the new role of president of Phelps, an independent, integrated marketing firm in Los Angeles. Among the stints during Jackson’s 30-year career in the ad business, was VP-marketing and advertising for GM in North America.
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Help Wanted: Luxury Brand Advertising

Someone call the ad police!

There’s too many crimes being committed against some luxury car brands.

One example is Toyota’s Lexus brand, a proven player that recently topped J.D. Power’s 2012 CSI ranking in the lux won segment for the fourth straight year.

Here’s the brand’s latest television spot for the new 2013 GS from TeamOne in El Segundo

 

Sorry, folks, but this commercial is a big snoozer that doesn’t do justice to this brand, just like the spot Lexus ran during the Super Bowl this year.

Could these yawn-worthy ads be part of the reason buyer consideration for Lexus is down 11% in the first two months of the year compared to a year ago, according to CNW’s Purchase Path Studies? Lexus also made a big deal about its official marketing partnership with Sports Illustrated magazine’s swimsuit property. It was a no-brainer for Lexus to have a four-page spread in the issue.  Bu the brand also backed several related events,  offered custom integrations for digital tablets and created an iPhone game.

The wildest tie-in was the racetrack Lexus created in the shape of swimsuit model Tori Praver’s body. Consumers can watch online videos of pro drivers zooming around that so-called TORI 500 track or use a camera app to put Tori in their own photos.

No secret Lexus is trying to attract younger males, saying in its press release that the annual SI Swimsuit hoopla reaches more than 70 million people and more men between the ages of 18 and 34 than the Super Bowl.

Lexus isn’t the only offender.

Let’s move onto Cadillac, which  is still airing this commercial for the CTS-V coupe from Fallon that broke last fall

Oh dear. We get the main point Caddy is trying to make here in this :60 spot. But why waste precious seconds with the silly valet tipping scene? That part I don’t get…and if you do please explain it to me.

Despite a slew of lackluster advertising, including a poor showing in the Super Bowl, the GM brand has managed to increase buyer consideration by 6% in January and February vs. the same year-ago period, CNW says.

Congrats Caddy, but please juice up your advertising.

Another lux maker with so-so messaging is Acura, which has had a long string of irrelevant ads with the exception of its over-the-top Seinfeld-Leno Super Bowl spot for the NSX.

Acura just posted its upcoming commercial for the 2013 RDX on YouTube, part of a multi-media partnership with Marvel’s “The Avengers” flick, arriving May 4 in theaters

rp&, a division of the Honda brand’s ad agency RPA in Santa Monica, handles Acura

Consideration for Acura slid by 19% in the first two months of 2012 compared to a year ago, CNW says.

Making some progress, but not there yet, is Nissan’s Infiniti brand, which just launched its new JX crossover with new work from TBWA/Chiat/Day.

Have a gander

Not a big fan of features’ advertising, but the backup collision intervention system seems worth crowing about.

Infiniti couldn’t resist  throwing in the third-row seating in the same spot too!

After losing its way for a while, BMW has made great progress with the launch work for the new 3 Series. Love the humor in this one from Kirshenbaum Bond Senecal + Partners

What a fun way to highlight a feature and sure to get chuckles from men who aren’t on the best of terms with their mothers-in-law.

Glad to see BMW making a strong push back to its “Ultimate Driving Machine” ad tag.

As far as the offenders, in at least one case, which I won’t call out, the top marketer is really a sales pro. Moving sales folks into marketing slots is a common industry tradition. But it’s not smart. As I have often told top OEM execs : “You wouldn’t  put a finance expert in charge of design, so why do you  think it’s OK to put a sales person in the top marketing job?”

Sales and marketing, although  usually lumped together in one silo, require  vastly different skill sets. And in today’s increasingly complex communications world, companies with experienced, trained ad pros certainly seem to outperform  their rivals.

It is amazing to me that OEMs still fail to realize this.

Follow me, Jean Halliday, on Facebook and LinkedIn

or on Twitter  @jhal2001

*This post first appeared as Jean Halliday’s Ad Rap in CNW’s monthly, subscriber-only newsletter.

Super Bowl Auto Ad Pileup

The Super Bowl of advertising is almost here.
And there’s a slew of carmakers advertising in the big game’s broadcast Feb. 6 on Fox.
Far and away the best of the bunch is Kia, which is launching the newest Optima with this over-the-top :60 from DavidandGoliath in El Segundo, California

Epic, indeed. This commercial is so arresting and unusual for the auto category. We predict Kia will get a ton of buzz and online traffic from this.
Glad to see Mercedes-Benz again using Janis Joplin’s famous song in its minute-long Super Bowl commercial in the fourth quarter. This is a very hard working commercial from Merkley & Partners, New York, since it covers heritage, safety, the 125th anniversary PLUS the global unveiling of four new models. Sean Combs provides comic relief.


VW has two commercials in the game- one for the new Passat; the other for the upcoming Beetle.
The Passat spot is cute

Sorry, but this one for the Beetle gives me the creeps.

VW called this commercial a bold move (wasn’t that Ford’s slogan a few years back?) since only the profile of the upcoming Beetle is shown. But let’s face it, the ultimate car commercial that DIDN’T SHOW the vehicle was Jeep’s “Snow Covered” from 1994 via Bozell Detroit

Chevrolet has five commercials. None of them are bombs, but this one for the Cruze has the potential to upset some folks, including the AARP

Goodby, Silverstein & Partners in San Francisco handles Chevy. This one, for the Camaro, has a surprising twist

“Never mess with a Chevy, dude” is an understatement.

Then there’s this quirky one for the Silverado, which falls flat

Hyundai, which is launching the new Elantra, has this visually-cool spot called “Deprogramming” in the third quarter. And who doesn’t love the Dude narrating?

Hyundai’s ad agency, Innocean Worldwide Americas in Huntington Beach, California, also created this one for the 2011 Elantra called “Hypnotize.”

It sort of reminds me of one that Arnold did for the VW Jetta years ago called “Synchronicity.”

Audi of America put out a couple of teaser videos on YouTube to set the stage for its minute-long commercial in the first quarter. Sax player Kenny G will play his horn to help supress a riot in Luxury Prison.

Audi also posted this tongue-in-cheek “Startled Smart” video as a teaser. Audi follows its on-going theme of being the emblem of new luxury, while poking fun at old luxury

Suzuki made a spot buy to advertise in 14 markets during the Super Bowl- it’s first appearance. The automaker is recycling this fun commercial called “Wicked Weather” from Siltanen & Partners Advertising, El Segundo, California, for the 2011 Kizashi sport sedan.

We’ll have to wait for game day to see BMW’s and Chrysler Group’s. Oh- they decided to keep their commercials a big secret. It’s advertising, guys! Not espionage.

MAKING TRACKS: Kim (Kosak) Brink is out at GM, where she started right out of college in 1989 as a market research analyst at Chevy. Her last day as executive director of Cadillac advertising was Jan. 28th. Apparently she didn’t fit in with the new marketing regime. Hey, Kim, you had a great run and were part of the heady days of the Cadillac mafia earlier this decade.

Ewanick Shifts Gears on Caddy

Joel Ewanick is proving he’s not a patient man.
Arriving a little over a month ago as GM’s new VP-marketing, Ewanick is moving Cadillac’s account- for the second time in six months. Ewanick inherited Bartle Bogle Hegarty, New York, hired after a review in January to replace independent Modernista, Boston.
BBH’s work looked more like music videos than ads for new models, which got lost in the executions.

BBH\’s Cadillac commercial
Cadillac deserves better than this. The once-iconic luxury brand was once the “Standard of the World” and had been starting its climb back up the mountain until GM hit the skids.
The truth is the industry grapevine had been buzzing well BEFORE Joel’s arrival that there was friction on the account, so much so that the Cadillac folks brought in veteran car creative Gary Topolewski to help out BBH. No surprise there since Caddy exec director-advertising Kim Brink (aka Kosak) and her boss, Susan Docherty, then VP-marketing of North America, had worked with Gary during their gigs earlier this decade in advertising at the brand when he was creative chief at Caddy’s agency, D’Arcy, Masius, Benton & Bowles in Troy, Michigan.
Those were heady days for Cadillac, which was enjoying a product renaissance with slicker new products and running its “Break Through” ad blitz featuring Led Zeppelin’s “Rock and Roll.”
Ewanick is moving the account to Fallon, Minneapolis, as first reported this morning by Adweek, although a GM spokeswoman declined any comment on the matter at mid-day June 24.
Since both Fallon and BBH are part of Publicis Groupe, the move is a wash in terms of revenues for the holding company, albeit a major embarrassment.
The move means Fallon will have to resign the Chrysler brand, which it won in January, and throws another piece of Detroit business up in the air.
Ewanick already moved Chevrolet’s account to Omnicom Group’s Goodby, Silverstein & Partners, San Francisco without a review. Ewanick worked with Goodby during his nearly 9 years as general marketing manager of Porsche Cars North America and he worked with the agency during his tenure at Hyundai. He also worked with Fallon, which lost the Porsche account to Goodby in 1993.
Fallon had a pretty decent track record during its 10-year run as BMW’s agency of record, which lasted until 2005, when a management shift at the client sparked an agency review and the agency resigned over the matter. Fallon was the brains behind BMW’s “The Hire” online film series that set a high bar in that category.
Hopefully lightning will strike again for Fallon on Cadillac.

MAKING TRACKS: On June 23, Russell Wager left David&Goliath, Kia’s U.S. creative ad agency, where he had been a managing partner since late 2006 on the car account. He’s moving from California to Japan, where he will start July 5 at TBWA/Hakuhodo in Tokyo on Nissan and Infiniti. Wager spent 13 years at TBWA’s Playa del Rey, California office as a partner-account director overseeing the Nissan and Infiniti account.