A Marketing Campaign That Stands Out

Although most of my posts are focused on marketing strategy I sometimes feel the need to highlight some outstanding advertising work that I believe stand above the rest. The criteria I use to judge a marketing campaign are its originality, creativity (without going overboard) and its ability to accomplish its marketing objectives.

Kia Canada’s latest marketing campaign named “Drive Change”, developed and implemented by David & Goliath Toronto and Innocean Worldwide Canada, certainly hits the right note with (at least a part of) the target audience. The goals of the campaign are to highlight the newly designed product line-up and, more importantly, to reinforce the brand’s commitment to social responsibility.

Competition in the automotive industry is fierce and auto manufacturers rely heavily on advertising to promote their products. Unfortunately, like in most other categories, the advertising medium is dominated by campaigns that promote the same features across all brands: fuel economy, safety and towing capacity (trucks). As a result it is particularly refreshing to see that Kia’s new campaign takes a different approach that elevate the brand beyond the product features. Its core message educates, inspires and aims to make the world a better place to live.

As an avid cyclist the one closest to my heart is the Share the Road commercial, that addresses the biggest frustration that those who ride the bike have: the reluctance that motorists have to share the road (I am sure my Canadian readers are familiar with the TV spot).

Kia’s decision to promote their social involvement rather than creating a “me-too” campaign is simply smart marketing, which usually leads to better sales numbers. May was the best ever month for Kia in their 11-year presence in the Canadian market, with over 6000 sold and a 34% increase versus 2010. Although the “Drive Change” campaign is only one ingredient of their sales success (their cars also look great and are backed by an industry leading warranty), the Marketing team and the agencies involved in putting the campaign together deserve a big round of applause.

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