Posted by Dale Buss on January 8, 2013 03:43 PM
As rumored late last year, GM is dropping Chevrolet's lackluster "Chevy Runs Deep" slogan and replacing it with a tagline and positioning that the brand's management team believes is more forward-looking and will be more effective: "Find New Roads."
In dumping the introspective "Chevy Runs Deep" tagline — introduced in 2010 with narration by dulcet brand voice Tim Allen, the comedic actor who's also a Michigan native — and adopting a more outward-looking brand positioning, the GM marketing brain trust is taking a number of steps simultaneously.
They're aiming for a new external positioning that can serve more global purposes as "the touchstone for the brand as it devleops new products and technologies for sale in more than 140 markets," according to a GM statement.
Notably, Chevrolet also is adopting "Find New Roads" as an internal rallying cry, an actionable objective for its engineers, marketers and other staffers around the world both for purposes of internal branding and employee engagement in the mission of the brand.
"What we need to do is bring this to life, and it needs to become the thrust of the brand," Alan Batey, GM's interim CMO and its vice president of U.S. sales, service and global marketing, told brandchannel. "That's why the internal alignment is the starting point." External applications of "Find New Roads" will begin globally later in the first quarter, he said.Continue reading...
Posted by Dale Buss on January 8, 2013 02:14 PM
Avalon isn't one of Toyota's best-selling vehicles, and the full-size sedan has never been one of the brand's most exciting offerings. But part of the mantle of being one of the world's few full-line automakers is that you cover every segment, because your dealers want you to, and because there are still top- and bottom-line opportunities even at smaller volumes.
Cue Toyota's now-launching 2013 Toyota Avalon, which it teased last April at the New York Auto Show. It's been completely redesigned — as has one of its main competitors, the new Chevrolet Impala — and is looking to conquest buyers in the target 40- to 60-year-old market who still enjoy the virtues of a relatively full-bodied automobile.Continue reading...
Posted by Dale Buss on January 7, 2013 12:12 PM
The evolution of the automobile into a mobile living room takes a giant leap forward this week at the International Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas, with many of the world's top 10 car makers touting wares that advance the richness, variety and seamlessness of the infotainment experience inside their vehicles. Audi, Chrysler, Ford, General Motors, Hyundai, Kia, Subaru, and Toyota's Lexus brand are all tooting their own digital horns and partnerships at the 2013 CES show.
Garnering some pre-CES buzz, both Lexus and Audi will be showcasing their respective advances in the self-driving car arena, whose development so far has been aggressively pursued mainly by Google (using Lexus for its self-driving car test) Both luxury auto brands are displaying technologies that could bring this once-outlandish notion closer to the actual road.Continue reading...
Posted by Dale Buss on January 3, 2013 04:14 PM
One of the last big things that Joel Ewanick did before he was bounced as General Motors' CMO last summer was to declare that the giant automaker was going to sit out TV advertising in Super Bowl XLVII on February 3. But don't be surprised that GM is trying to find every other way it can to attach itself to the Big Game.
One of the latest reports is that Chevrolet plans to place its all-new 2014 Corvette on the 50-yard-line during the halftime show and present it to this year's celebrity performer (and Pepsi partner), Beyonce. But GM hasn't budged an inch in terms of its decision to sit out actual advertising during the Super Bowl telecast on CBS, even though Chevy could probably make real good use this year of its traditionally strong presence in the game, with a new 2014 Silverado pick-up truck comnig out and its overall brand message remaining muddled.
Speaking of Beyonce, PepsiCo now plans to put 50 contest winners onstage with her during the halftime show. The online contest invites entrants to post photos of themselves in Beyonce-style positions that could be used in ads promoting her performance.
In other Super Bowl advertising news, M&Ms has announced that it will return to the game with an all-new 30-second commercial during the first quarter. Last year, M&Ms introduced the world to its "Ms. Brown" character that was a hit with viewers. All that Mars Chocolate North America will say about its plans for this Super Bowl is that it will "tap our colorful characters" once again.Continue reading...
Posted by Dale Buss on December 21, 2012 02:20 PM
The paint isn't even dry yet on the 2012 sales year and already automakers are gearing up for a 2013 that they hope will be even more prosperous. U.S. auto sales defied the economic headwinds this year, and prognostications so far are that they'll lead the way again next year in bringing whatever further measure of recovery comes to America.
That's why the buzz around the 2013 North American International Auto Show (NAIAS), more commonly known as the Detroit Auto Show, already is stronger than it has been in a few years — at least since before the Great Recession and the GM and Chrysler bailouts.
More than 50 products are slated to be unveiled at NAIAS, which kicks off with a media preview on January 14-15, with most of them being global "reveals." The Chinese will be back after bowing out for a few years. A number of luxury marques are returning to the show after absences caused by a number of factors; they include Jaguar, Land Rover, Ferrari and Maserati.
Here's a look at what a few brands already have signaled to expect at the show, including the new Toyota Furia, at top:Continue reading...
Posted by Dale Buss on December 18, 2012 09:02 AM
Apple and Android dominate mobile-platform impressions while Apple reports strong sales of iPhone 5 in China and talks with Foursquare about data-sharing deal.
GE plans to buy Avio Italian aerospace group as CEO perceives an "investment pause" in some industries over economy.
Walmart takedown by New York Times continues with searing update on Mexican bribery scandal.
Freedom Group, parent of Bushmaster rifle used to kill Connecticut kids, will be sold by owner Cerberus.
AOL gives all employees $1,000 year-end bonus.
Billabong gets another takeover bid.
BlackBerry 10 now in tests at 120 companies.
Brazil burger chain offers edible packaging.Continue reading...
Posted by Dale Buss on December 13, 2012 06:09 PM
Pickup trucks still haul the freight when it comes to U.S. auto sales and profits, especially for Detroit's Big Three. So it's a big deal when a new or improved pickup model comes in from the wings.
That's what happened today with General Motors' unveiling of the first redesigned Chevrolet Silverado and GMC Sierra pickup trucks since 2006, featuring "evolutionary" exterior styling changes but significant engine and interior improvements. “The new Sierra and Silverado are more differentiated than ever in unique features and materials, in their standard content and in their design and details,” stated Mark Reuss, president, GM North America. “These are two strong and distinct brands – each one appealing to a different kind of customer.”
The launch of the 2014 Silverado and Sierra is heavy with possibilities. It'll greatly boost GM's sales and financial prospects in 2013 and beyond. It will pose a heightened competitive threat to Ford, whose F-150 pickup long has been America's best-selling vehicle. And a successful takeoff for the new GM pickups could go a long way toward restoring investor confidence in the company which, in turn, might boost its stock price enough for the federal govenrment to feel justified in selling off its last stake in the automaker that it brought through bankruptcy in 2009.Continue reading...
Posted by Dale Buss on December 10, 2012 06:34 PM
Things have been getting a bit testy in the high-profile, low-sales world of electric vehicles. Late last month at the Los Angeles Auto Show, a Fiat executive took a none-too-veiled shot at Nissan for the styling of its Leaf. And Nissan quickly shot right back at some of Fiat's own design executions.
The spat began when Matt Davis, head of Fiat product marketing in the United States, was talking about the coming all-electric version of the Fiat 500 and told Bloomberg News on Nov. 28, "Let's be honest, ugliness is probably one of the worst forms of pollution. The Fiat 500e proves that you do not have to give up on good looks to deliver an electric car."
Now, in Davis's defense, he was absolutely right about the design of most all-electric vehicles and plug-in hybrids so far. They're at best uninspired, at worst an arrogant reflection of the notion that because they're powered in a "superior" fashion, such models don't need to look like conventional vehicles either. So you end up with the minimalist wedge shape of the Toyota Prius, the prosaic design of the Chevrolet Volt — and the pragmatic styling package comprised by Leaf.
With that in mind, fast forward to Fiat's first US campaign for the 500e — one using the oldest rule in the marketer's playbook ("Sex Sells"). The racy new commercial aims to estabish its EV as the hot, sexy car in the category.Continue reading...