Anyone who flips on the TV in July knows that that the problem with automotive summer sales events is that everyone is doing one.
Luxury automaker Infiniti is hoping to break through the clutter for its Limited Engagement summer event with a campaign that features 15-second ads paired in ad pods. The effort, running through Aug. 31, takes artfully shot ads about vehicles like the C-Coupe Hardtop and links them to ads that continue a focus on the vehicle just featured but lead to a message about the summer sale, and a group shot of all of Infiniti's vehicles.
The sale offers leasing and financing deals on the lineup of 2009 Infiniti performance luxury vehicles save for the latest iteration of the Infiniti G37 Convertible, which went on sale June 18.
The ads, running via a national cable and local spot buy in Infiniti's Top 15 markets, will run back-to-back and in some cases split within a commercial pod, per Ben Poore, VP of the Infiniti business unit.
"We were trying to figure out how to link a branded message with a message about our sales event," he says. "We find we get better awareness when we run fifteens, so we thought we could improve brand perception but at same time have a call to action; today lots of people are looking for something to compel them to go to dealerships, and we think viewers will be surprised because this isn't something they are used to seeing."
Ads for vehicles like the G-hardtop convertible, sedan and coupe use metaphorical shots of a hand caressing different surfaces or beauty shots and slow-mo angle shots of the car rolling along a leaf-strewn road to talk about things like engine performance, handling and stability, while sales ads offer $375 per month leasing and 0% financing on certain vehicles.
The effort includes newspaper ads in top markets, a home-page takeover on July 28 on MSN.com and on CNN.com, and a mobile-platform messaging effort on the weekend aimed at in-market luxury car shoppers. A new WAP mobile site is available at Infinitiusa.com.
It has been a harsh year so far for Infiniti, as it has been for most every other luxury brand. Infiniti's year-to-date sales through June were off 37.9%. Sales for the month are down 32.3%. Competitor Lexus' saw June sales drop 20%, and year-to-date sales fall 33.7%. Acura's sales through June were off 34%.
"This is traditionally one of the times when lots of consumers expect a sales event," says Poore. "What we wanted to do in a traditional time [for sales events] is come at it in a non-traditional way."