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Posts Tagged ‘auto marketing’

Ewanick Legacy “Gone,” GM Marketing in Turmoil

Caddy and Chevy accounts shift; will Buick-GMC follow?

by on Mar.14, 2013

Tippett Studios, which created the fantasy world in Jurassic Park, now helps Buick's Encore dodge dinosaurs in a new ad campaign.

General Motors’ marketing operations are a step short of chaos, according to sources close to the maker, with two of GM’s most important brands set to review – and likely make major changes to – their ad agency partnerships.

Chevrolet is the latest to be looking for new talent after a disappointing effort to turn to an unusual partnership between two of the advertising industry’s largest agencies. The largest of the GM brands is also getting a new global marketing chief of its own next month. As TheDetroitBureau.com previously reported, Cadillac also is switching ad agencies.

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The reported moves mean that the legacy of former GM global marketing czar Joel Ewanick is largely “gone,” according to an industry veteran. Ironically, it appears that the latest shake-up involves a game of musical chairs, some of the agencies coming back to GM having had long associations with the maker in the past.

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Marty’s Marketing Minutia – Super Ad Brawl Countdown

My Take on This Year’s Auto Commercials

by on Feb.01, 2013

Kia will introduce the Hotbots in its Forte ad. Will they become the maker's next "hamstars"?

We’re rapidly approaching that annual celebration of advertising excess known as the Super Bowl.  And this year’s event, XLVII is already creating headlines, as the debate over Volkswagen’s Jamaican-themed spot demonstrated this past week. Almost 40% of the ads that will air on CBS’s broadcast of the game-of-the-year are auto ads. But unlike past years, there’ll be far fewer surprises as leaks, sneaks and previews have become an important component of the actual broadcast.

The Last Word!

Eight car brands are running ads, the question is, “Who is going to have the best car commercial in the broadcast?”

After a review of all spots so far released, here are links to the ads, my picks and rationale for their ranking and when each will run in the game so you don’t miss ‘em.

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VW Sticking with Jamaican Ad, Mon

Maker claims critics “over-think” issue.

by on Jan.31, 2013

Don't worry, be happy. A scene from the VW ad.

Volkswagen says there will be “no change” in its plan to air a controversial Super Bowl in which everyone in an office starts speaking in a Jamaican accent.

The ad came under fire when the German maker released a sneak preview earlier this week, critics calling it racist. But the spot, which is performed to the tune, “C’mon, Get Happy,” by Jamaican singer Jimmy Cliff, has also generated a wide range of support.

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“My problem with it is there’s no link to Volkswagen. It’s a German car,” said Barbara Lippert, an editor-at-large for mediapost.com during an appearance on the Today Show in which she discussed Super Bowl advertising. Saying she was “shocked” by the VW spot, Lippert added that, “It’s just saying that black people are happy.”

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Marty’s Marketing Minutia – Auto Show Edition

Finding New Roads - and new customers.

by on Jan.11, 2013

Barbarians at the gate? The media hordes prepare for their annual assault on Detroit's Cobo Hall.

For years Cobo Hall, the venue for the North American International Automobile Show has been suspect. No matter how good the vehicles may be displayed with special lighting, the roof did leak, the rest rooms were awful, it was either too hot or too cold and exhibitors and media attendees alike were certain to come up with a vociferous array of complaints.

Result? A three-year, three-phase $270 million renovation and expansion is nearly complete, just in time for the show’s media preview days. There’s a new atrium overlooking the Windsor, Canada skyline and the Detroit River. The Wayne exhibit hall has had 25,000 square feet added and parking has been expanded by 500 spaces.

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Also good news is the relocation of the Michelin Media Center from the inconvenient third floor of  Cobo to Michigan Hall at river level. It’s located between the new three-story atrium, and the indoor Aisin Drive Green Experience test track. There will be more work spaces — 700 of ‘em –, hard line web connectivity, broadcast and photo centers and of course, a steady flow of coffee, refreshments and snacks.

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Marty’s Marketing Minutia – Special Triscadecaphobia Edition

by on Jan.04, 2013

The godfather of bad TV auto advertising, Cal Worthington, lives on.

We saw 2012 end with metaphoric skyrockets lighting the midnight sky for most auto marketers. Business was far better than expected. It was good, damn near great! Some auto advertisers were patting themselves on the back for their Super Bowl ads that went viral – viral all year! The consumer marketplace despite the on-going recession was in the car buying and leasing mood.  Result?

Single malts and champagne toasts along with the occasional long necks were raised in praise of the outgoing year along with great expectations and eager optimism for 2013.

The Last Word!

But in some corners of the automotive marketing, advertising, promotion and public relations world the future was at best bleak. There were more important new ad agency appointments in 2012 than ever before with many unplanned career changes and relocations for creatives, media and suits at every level. And there’s at least one big switch to come in the New Year with others rumored.

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Marty’s Marketing Minutia – Honda-Acura Edition

The ad agency games are on!

by on Dec.07, 2012

Is Honda getting the best possible creative work? That's what the review is intended to find out.

For decades – yes, decades – automobile clients were the backbone of many advertising agencies. Chevrolet was with Campbell-Ewald since the 1940’s. Gone under the brief but dramatic reign of global marketing czar Joel Ewanick. Cadillac was the cornerstone of McManus John and Adams (and various iterations) since the 1900’s as were its siblings Pontiac and GM Corporate. Gone like that, also by JE. Volkswagen began the trend of contemporary advertising with some legendary Beetle ads. But eventually, Doyle Dane Bernbach lost that business, too.

Marketing Insight!

In recent times BMW has changed agencies, as have Volvo, Porsche, Chrysler, Dodge, Buick, GMC, Mazda, Jaguar, Hyundai, Land Rover, Mini, VW, Saab, Fiat and a couple I can’t recall.  Billions of dollars in expenditures and income gone. It is a very tough and competitive business — and as we’ve just discovered, the Honda/Acura account could soon join that list.

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Marty’s Marketing Minutia – Winners & Losers Edition

Our marketing maven's take on COTY and NASCAR

by on Nov.16, 2012

Hyundai execs celebrate last year's win for North American Car of the Year.

Among the harbingers of Fall are the pernickety Car of the Year Awards (aka COTY) presented in numerous vehicle categories by enthusiast magazines, auto websites, various syndicated columnists and, well, it seems like almost everyone weighs in these days.

Many winners are so surprised their agencies have barely time to simultaneously release multi-page-ads in consumer and trade publications and duly note their accolade in TV spots. Not that there was any advance notice of course.

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Then there is the most prestigious COTY award – make that North American Car and Truck of the Year awards — presented during the Detroit Auto show, an event that has justifiably become known as the most prestigious and credible of the breed considering the winners are chosen by a group of 50 independent U.S. and Canadian auto writers.

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Marty’s Marketing Minutia: Domestic Goddess Edition

Martha pitches Toyota, Blake rebounds for Kia, Adweek honors Olivier, and TED honors Mazda.

by on Nov.02, 2012

Martha Stewart will team up with Toyota for the launch of the new Avalon.

Doyen of domesticity moves into garage: Martha Steward & Toyota Avalon

Sheets, towels, paint, pots, pans, plants, party planning, gardening, television shows, publications and more are just some of the associations Martha Stewart has used to become one of most powerful women and brands — targeted to an estimated 66 million women every month. Now add Toyota and the Japanese brand’s all-new 2013 Avalon which becomes the latest product on Ms. Stewart’s resume as part of “Martha Stewart’s American Made initiative.”

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A Toyota spokesperson noted, “Partnering with Martha Stewart and the American Made initiative made perfect sense for us – after all, about 70% of Toyota vehicles sold in the US are built here.  And, the 2013 Toyota Avalon is the perfect example of our commitment to building in America.  The Avalon was designed, engineered and built right here in the USA.”

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Marty’s Marketing Minutia

Ferrari takes to the rails, Nissan gets a Bolt from Usain, inside Google and more.

by on Oct.19, 2012

Yes, it's even faster than a Ferrari.

It might have been a slow week for the automotive marketing world if it weren’t for the world’s fastest man, London Olympics star Usain Bolt showing up in Tokyo this time for a tie-up with Nissan — more of that to follow.

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In fact, endorsements were the dominant news, Martha Stewart linking up with Toyota while Kia moved from Hamsters to a jazzy Batman Optima at New York’s Comic Com and Chrysler revealed plans to pair up with Motown – and the hip-hop world.  But here’s a look at some other developments over the past week:

The Ferrari Railroad  

Travelers to Italy rejoice. For a few hundred Euros you can now enjoy a Ferrari on a route from Naples, Rome, Florence, Bologna and Milan on the world’s fastest railroad known as Nuovo Trasporto Viaggiatori  or NTV.

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Chrysler Working Up Another Super Bowl Blockbuster Ad

But this time, the cars may be the stars.

by on Oct.08, 2012

Chrysler's global marketing chief went out on a limb - or more accurately, out in a blizzard - to get rapper Eminem for a much-watched Super Bowl ad.

Few advertisers have created such a stir during the Super Bowl as Chrysler, which knocked it out of the park in 2011 with an unusual, 2-minute commercial featuring rapper Eminem, then came back with the controversial Clint Eastwood commercial during the 2012 Super Bowl.

Might the maker try to score again with a spot during next year’s big game, typically one of the most widely viewed TV events in the world?

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“Yes, we are leaning towards being there,” said Chrysler’s global marketing czar Olivier Francois. In a conversation with TheDetroitBureau.com, he admitted that the challenge is coming up with another breakout idea. “Clearly, topping what we have done so far – no mystery – is not going to be easy.”

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