Tag Archives: Suzuki

March Marketing Madness: Nissan, Chevy, Dodge

Nissan’s Snowy Deja Vu
  It’s certainly been a winter for record-breaking snow and nasty weather. So maybe it’s no surprise that Nissan used a snowy street scene with snowmen for a TV commercial to launch its redesigned 2014 Rogue.
The spot, which aired first in Canada and then in the USA touts the all-wheel-drive of the new Rogue compact SUV. TBWA created the commercial, dubbed “Winter Warrior.” Both the :60 and :30 versions show evil snowmen attacking a Rogue driver on a snowy street. The production resembles a thrilling movie chase scene. The motorist manages to escape, naturally, because of the AWD system.
Have a look if you haven’t seen it yet


It is a pretty fun spot that shows off the Rogue’s drivability on snow-covered roads and cleverly sneaks in its three-row seating.
The only problem is that this commercial is so VERY similar to one American Suzuki had a few years back for the all-wheel-drive version of its Kizashi sport sedan. Suzuki’s commercial, called Wicked Weather,” ran in 14 key US markets during the Super Bowl in 2011. So it got pretty good exposure. And it ran tons of other times before and after the Big Game. Even Suzuki’s snowmen, created by Siltanen & Partners, look an awfully lot like Nissan’s.
Judge for yourself

TBWA creatives could have dreamed this one up on their own. Or could it be that somewhere in the back of their brain’s memory file there was a glint recalling an ad with snowmen attacking a car with AWD?
Coincidence? We may never know, but you have to admit the executions are very, very close.
American Suzuki Motor Corp. isn’t likely to make much of a ruckus. The automaker is phasing out its car sales operations here in Chapter 11 bankruptcy court.
Chevy’s Crazy Kids
Speaking of coincidences, a Chevrolet Cruze commercial is getting lots of attention- in a good way. The spot, called “Speed Chaser,” for the Cruze broke during the Academy Awards broadcast and was made for a mere $4,000.
The :60 spot was created by South independent Korean filmmaker Jude Chun, who bested 72 other submissions from around the world in Chevy’s MOFILM , a global community of indie filmmakers. It shows children making the commercial, using props and special effects. The ad has a written on-screen disclaimer: “Children should not play in or around vehicles.” That was probably added by GM lawyers.
In one scene, one of the kids uses his hands to flip over a model-size Cruze, much to the dismay of a young female back-seat passenger. Have a peek

Many ads with cute children are well received with viewers and this one is no different. But Chevy got into big hot water in 2004 for a slick Corvette commercial that broke during the Summer Olympics. Called “A Boy’s Dream,” it showed a young boy putting the sports car through its paces, even taking the Vette airborn as a young girl behind the wheel of another Vette passes him in mid-air going in the other direction. It only ran once. General Motors quickly buckled under pressure from safety and advocacy groups afraid young kids would try to drive their parents’ cars like banchees.
It was a mistake in my mind to pull the ad from Campbell-Ewald in Warren, Michigan because it was clearly a dream sequence. If your kid doesn’t know the difference between reality and dreams you have bigger problems than this commercial.

Yes, this ad also had a written, on-screen disclaimer:  “This is a dream. Do not drive without a license. Obey all traffic laws.”
What a difference a decade makes, eh?
Dodge’s New Celeb Mouth
When it comes to Chrysler Group ads, one can expect to see celebrities.
Now here comes Joan Rivers stumping the beauty of Dodge-brand models in regional dealer ads from Doner in suburban Detroit.

JoanRivers

They’re part of the automaker’s multi-brand “Award Season (sales) Event.”
In the spot for the Dart, Rivers touts the car’s beauty and power. “Look at the leather seats,” she coos. “They are softer than the leather on my face,” says Rivers, who regularly pokes fun at all the plastic surgery she’s had as host of “Fashion Police.”
The spots are airing through April in some 122 markets.
The comic’s appearance in the Dodge ad is shocking to a lot of people. “Are they reaching out to 70-year-olds,” wondered a Facebook poster.
The answer is no.
Rivers, whose career has spanned 5 decades, has managed to keep herself in the public eye and is winning over a younger generation. Rivers and these commercials should generate more positive buzz for Dodge.
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On Twitter: @jhal2001

 

SUZUKI’S BIG GAME PLAY

American Suzuki Motor took the wraps off its commercial for this year’s Super Bowl this morning. The commercial, from Siltanen & Partners, in El Segundo, California, spotlights the all-wheel-drive version of the 2012 Kizashi sedan.

What better place to do that than in the snow- -frozen ice to be specific. The commercial was shot in one day at Canada’s frozen Spray Lake outside of Canmore, Alberta and stars two actual Intuit Eskimos from Alaska. They were chosen via teleconference auditions from California. Not a lot of dialogue in the spot. But there are some subtitles.

Suzuki says the commercial, called “Sled,” is aimed at males, and will continue to run after the Super Bowl Feb. 5 as part of the automaker’s new marketing campaign set to break in March.

Take a look

“This is a familiar story told in a unique way,” Rob Siltanen, chairman and chief creative officer of Suzuki’s Marina Del Rey ad agency, told me.

I agree. It’s a fun commercial that spotlights the sedan’s all-wheel drive. What’s NOT to like about the smiling male Eskimo jamming to his tunes- along with his sled dogs. Suzuki is going for extra gusto beyond just the Big Game, posting the commercial on its YouTube channel as well as on its Facebook page.

Suzuki first released the spot in late January with original music called “Party Still Jumpin” created by Ben Kahle, even as it was holding eleventh-hour negotiations with 50 Cent. The deal with the rapper was finally inked and Suzuki updated the spot.

Budget-restrained Suzuki bought air time in 21 markets for the spot. The one-minute version will air in 11 of those 21 markets; a slimmed-down :30 will appear in the others.

Although Suzuki’s new-vehicle sales rose by 11% last year vs. 2010, the tally was a mere 26,619 units.

MAKING TRACKS : Shockingly, Suzuki eliminated the position of marketing and  product planning director last Friday, January 20. That means Steve Younan left the company after six years. Before joining Suzuki, Younan spent 15 years at Nissan North America, where he rose to senior marketing manager and vehicle line marketing on trucks. Someone should pluck him up quickly.