GM Marketing Chief Says TV is Not Dead

October 11, 2010

Television Remains Mainstay for GM

In an industry that’s driving money into social media and other communication platforms Joel Ewanick, the head of marketing for General Motors, believes some of the best campaigns still begin with Television.

“I love television,” he said. “(Some) people say television is dead, it is not dead. It drives a lot of traffic.”

In July, approximately two months after Ewanick joined GM, the company aired its first Chevy Corvette TV commercial in five years. The spot, titled “Still Building Rockets,” contrasts NASA scientists developing and launching space rockets with a Corvette being built and burning rubber on a test track.

According to Ewanick, Chevrolet will unveil a Silverado pickup TV campaign in October, which features the good-natured teasing that occurs when Silverado owners visit with owners of other brands. Additionally, GM will be returning to run Super Bowl advertising in February.

Ewanick believes TV remains a key medium for selling and driving traffic to dealer websites. According to Automotive News, Ewanick – who spent about the past three years as Hyundai Motor America’s marketing chief – said he likes the current Hyundai “Uncensored” campaign. In it, Hyundai test drivers give straightforward opinions about how they feel behind the wheel of the vehicles.

“That campaign began on TV then moved to Facebook and other social media sites to continue a lively dialogue for Hyundai owners and others,” Ewanick said.

That’s a good model for how a campaign can launch on TV and expand into other media, he added.

 

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TV Advertising Helps 3 Auto Brands Stand Out!

November 11, 2009

Picture for Post #39

 

What do Hyundai/Kia, Subaru and Volkswagen all have in common?

1) They spent considerably more on television advertising for the first 6 months of 2009, as a percentage of their ad budgets, than the auto industry average.  

Brand

% of ad budget spent on TV Advertising

Hyundai/Kia 

78.4%

Subaru 

90.0% 

Volkswagen 

80.7%

Industry Avg. 

62.5%

2) All three auto makers saw their market share increase substantially over the same period a year ago.

Brand  Market Share Increase 
Hyundai/Kia  39.7%
Subaru  52.9%
Volkswagen 28.8%

3) All three posted year-over-year unit sales decreases (every single manufacturer suffered decreases in sales during this period) that were considerably less than the industry average.

Brand  Unit Sales Decreases 
Hyundai/Kia  -9.4% 
Subaru -0.8%
Volkswagen -16.4%
Industry Avg. – 35.1%

4) All three brands allocated a smaller percentage of their ad budgets to Internet advertising than the industry average:

Brand  % of ad budget spent on U.S. Internet Advertising
Hyundai/Kia 3.7%
Subaru 5.4%
Volkswagen 4.0% 
Industry Avg. 7.5%

What do I think?

First of all, I think all three auto makers have done a great job bringing products to market that people actually want to buy. That’s most important to remember.

I also think it’s hard to refute what the data above says about their advertising decisions. There’s no denying, I’ve seen a ton of compelling television commercials for Hyundai, Subaru and Volkswagen this past year … and it would appear I was not the only one. 

I don’t care how the new media crowd spins it, when a brand like Subaru spends 90% of their total ad budget on television and is able to increase market share by 53% — it makes a compelling case for the power of television advertising. Short and simple.

And when you add in the impressive sales performances by Hyundai and Volkswagen, it’s even harder to ignore that television played more than just a casual role in success of all three auto makers.  Wouldn’t you agree?

Source:  TNS Media Intelligence/Automotive News

 

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