The underlying cultural significance of Super Bowl advertising.
Of course, in the wrap up of every Super Bowl, the people want to get a taste of which commercials were the most popular. This morning Hulu released its list of winners, and it looks like nostalgia took the blue ribbon. Of the ads that ran during game time, Honda’s “Matthew’s Day Off” (a Ferris Bueller tribute) just narrowly edged out Volkswagen’s “The Dog Strikes Back,” with the “most liked” ad on Hulu AdZone being Volkswagen’s “The Bark Side” preview ad.
Because you work in advertising or media, a little more is expected of you when it comes to Super Bowl advertising knowledge. It's not enough to mindlessly chuckle along with the masses at the CareerBuilder monkeys or Volkswagen's body-image-obsessed canine. You need to be able drop some serious knowledge on this, advertising's biggest day, whilst juggling a microbrew and a plate of nachos.
Audi has spent several years building brand awareness and consideration in the U.S. market. Now the company, which saw sales increase 28% in June, is hoping to join the ranks of bona fide luxury brands. The company has focused much of its marketing muscle on vehicles like the A4, but the next phase will be a raft of premium vehicles positioned against vehicles like Mercedes-Benz S-Class and BMW 7-Series, says Loren Angelo, Audi's U.S. brand marketing manager.
Audi is inviting the public to submit ideas for electric car designs through July 31, following Fiat's recent user-generated contest inviting consumers to participate in developing a new car. It's the latest high-profile crowdsourcing exercise, which used to be restricted to startups and smaller companies. Now, it's much more common among bigger brands. Pepsi's doing it, while Starbucks has generated over 21,000 ideas from coffee-lovers for new drinks. Dell's three-year-old IdeaStorm has received over 10,000 suggestions from consumers, and claims to have implemented almost 400 of those ideas. Last year, Netflix paid $1 million for a new idea for a movie recommendation system.
BMW yesterday announced a strong push into the small car segment, brushing off fears that this would lead to an erosion of its profitability. Norbert Reithofer, chief executive, said the carmaker was developing a modular platform for building small cars. The front-wheel drive architecture, set to be launched in 2014, would enable the carmaker to expand its Mini model range and bring small BMW cars to the market. "The smaller segments of the premium market are set to grow by 4-6 per cent each year until 2020. But there are only a few models on the market, so we want to further push into that segment," Mr Reithofer said. The move underscores how premium carmakers are being forced to catch up with rapidly changing demand patterns in their industry, as customers in developed countries turn their back on large gasguzzling cars.
The seemingly continuous commercials during the coverage of the Winter Games on the networks of NBC Universal gave a new meaning to the term “snow job.” It was as if every spot showed snow, or ice, or both, in which skiers, skaters and snowboarders cavorted. That made it difficult for ad-weary, ad-bleary viewers to distinguish the commercials from the actual coverage of the Vancouver Olympics. Perhaps that was the sponsors’ fiendish intent: to perpetrate the ultimate blurring of the line between advertising and content.
When a brand goes directly after its competition in an ad, there's always a price to pay. A poorly executed competitive ad makes the advertiser look boorish; a well-executed one puts the competitor on the defensive. Audi's latest jab at BMW appears to be the latter: The ad is classy and humorous, yet gets the point across. It depicts winning and losing moments (for example, a father who beats his son in a toy car race) with the voice-over: "In every friendly little competition, there's a winner... and a loser." Audi closes with the fact that it beat BMW in three straight Car and Driver comparisons.
After throwing a Hail Mary in the Super Bowl, Audi is going for the two points, with a pair of spots to air during the Winter Olympics' Friday evening opening ceremonies. The new ads, via AOR Venables Bell & Partners, are directly competitive with Lexus, BMW and Mercedes-Benz vehicles.
Charging into the Super Bowl for the first time, Kia Motors is discovering that buying a 30-second ad during the game, which will air on CBS this Sunday, is opening a few doors, namely a deeper relationship with a very big company: Google. Google is working closely with Kia and nearly all Super Bowl XLIV's 40 Super Bowl advertisers, offering them exposure far beyond the TV. The marketers that are paying up to $2.8 million for each 30-second spot can upload the ads on Google's Super Bowl Ad Blitz page, as they have in the past. But this year Google has added even more features including social media buttons that will make it easy for viewers to pass them along or "tweet" them on Twitter.
Audi hopes luxury car buyers will tune in to Super Bowl XLIV. The $2.8 million price tag for a 30-second commercial is high, but the ability to reach 95 million people in one day is important to Audi. It's a shot at distinguishing the company from big competitors, at a time when car marketers--particularly the luxury players--are reeling. Audi's U.S sales slid 5.7% to 82,716 cars sold in 2009, compared to the year before, according to Autodata.
Foreign car makers are marketing their vehicles more aggressively in the U.S., and are making the Super Bowl a high-profile part of their strategies for wresting market share from American rivals. On Feb. 7, tens of millions of football fans will see about a half-dozen auto commercials from at least four overseas manufacturers flicker across their TV screens during the big game. Last year, three auto makers, advertised on the Super Bowl broadcast.
German luxury brand Audi is a refreshing change from what most of the news in the auto business has been about lately. The Volkswagen subsidiary has pumped up its U.S. advertising budget by 20%, increased its market share and been surprisingly successful in marketing "clean diesel" models against competitors' hybrids. In this eight-minute video, Audi America CMO Scott Keogh recaps the company's strategies at the same time he wags his finger at what he portrays as the hopelessly bland marketing of U.S. domestic automakers.
It's all here. The 170-miles-per-gallon diesel hybrid. The pure electric car that Volkswagen calls a 21st-century Beetle. A variety of models with small gasoline engines that promise good power and mileage. And, of course, the diesels that are a VW forte and that the automaker is sure will have a major role in meeting the market's fuel-economy demands for a while. More than gee-whiz, VW showed off its visions for the future in a technical briefing at a motorsports park here recently for one reason: to demonstrate how it can meet its ambitious goals in an atmosphere of auto-industry crisis and ever-stricter emissions and mileage regulations.
For some auto makers, the global recession has spelled bankruptcy or near extinction. For Volkswagen AG's Audi unit, it could be the biggest break in decades. Audi, founded a century ago, counts as one of the world's leading luxury brands. Yet it has failed to become a major player in the U.S. Now, the German car maker, based in this small city in Bavaria, is redoubling efforts to break out of its rut in the world's largest car market. Audi has invested heavily in the U.S. this year, a counterintuitive approach at a time when its chief rivals are cutting costs. The car maker increased 2009 marketing spending by 20%, pouring millions of dollars into Super Bowl and other high-impact ads, and has unveiled eight new models in the U.S. this year.
In less than two months, a new year will arrive, along with a new decade. Each year in the current decade has been spoken the long way, as in “two thousand nine,” rather than the short way, as in “twenty oh nine” (or even “twenty ought nine”). In 2010, however, another option will present itself, echoing how people referred to years starting in the second decade of the 20th century: “twenty ten,” just like “nineteen ten,” rather than “two thousand ten.” Most people will have a couple of months to consider how they will refer to next year — but not the automakers, because a model year runs from Oct. 1 through Sept. 30.
Volkswagen-owned car marque Audi is changing its logo for the first time since 1990, to reflect a more 'pure and clear' identity and to emphasis the brand's focus on design.
Audi released details today of the brand’s new dealership design created by architects Allmann SattlerWappner of Munich. The concept is called the “terminal” and is meant to provide a shopping experience that reflects the style, performance, and luxury characteristics of Audi automobiles.
Audi has signed on as official luxury vehicle of the New York Yankees. The promotional relationship puts the Audi name in various areas of the new Yankee Stadium, such as the Audi Yankees Club, an exclusive viewing location and membership restaurant located on the H&R Block Suite Level in left field. The sponsorship begins with the opening of the new field--and, per the company, will extend through the 2011 season.
While most of its luxury rivals retrench, Audi is looking to grab more market share with a stunt-filled Super Bowl spot.
According to Audi's CMO, the company is communicating the "inherent spirit of progress and innovation that is the core of our corporate DNA" by sponsoring this historic day's news.