Chevy Super Bowl: Social And Global

Chevrolet's humorous ad featuring a yellow Camaro is part of a raft of new advertising the company will feature during the Super Bowl, and one of several social media initiatives.

The automaker also has launched a free app for iOS and Android, Chevy Game Time, and is running a social promo with Twitter and the NFL called “Road to the #SuperBowl.”

The new TV spot was chosen from entries from 32 countries whose auteurs vied for a chance to have their 30-second ad run during Super Bowl XLVI on NBC Sunday as part of a global promotion, “Chevrolet Route 66." Chevrolet partnered with Microsoft for the Web site, www.ChevroletRoute66.MSN.com, and made UK-based MOFILM the crowdsourcing engine for the program.

Chris Perry, head of Chevrolet marketing, said the effort aligns with General Motors division's shift to a global focus. "We did a program like this on mobile media in 2011 and it was pretty successful, so we did it globally.” Chevrolet is distributed in 140 countries, and 60% of sales are outside the U.S, he adds.

Perry also said that people around the world share the same idea of what Chevrolet is. "We decided to tap into that and see what we come up with," he says.

There are some 30 ads on the Web site from eight continents, per Perry, who said the global positioning around Chevrolet being the vehicle for life's journey, is augmented by a kind of "hometown brand" perception among consumers, wherever they are. "It's about down-to-earth qualities and reliability," he says.

The videos have gotten 32 million views from people around the world, most from the U.S. Perry says consumers in Mexico and India spend the most time on the site.

Chevrolet didn't tell filmmakers to adhere to a concrete list of brand beatitudes -- but suggested that the films should delineate how the brand is part of life's journey, per Perry, who adds that submissions came entirely from filmmakers rather than, say, ad agencies.

The app -- while it's meant to be fun and interactive -- will also give Chevrolet real-time feedback on how focused people are on Super Bowl ads. For example, the app has a "license plate roulette" element, where people who download the app also get a virtual license plate number. If that number shows up on a real Chevy vehicle in either of two (of several) spots the company is airing during the game, that car goes to that lucky person. All told, Chevrolet is giving away 20 vehicles.

"Most of this activity takes place during the breaks," says Perry. "Our research shows that most people watch the game with eight or more people, so it's another way for fans to engage in the [football] game. The ways we engage in entertainment have moved beyond the TV set, into the third screen."

Chevrolet has been running what might be called a "meta ad" on the championship series that promotes the game. Perry says the company is also touting it via Twitter, Facebook, and email blasts to owners. And co-promoters Papa John's, Bridgestone, Motorola, Sirius XM, and the NFL Shop are promoting it through their channels.

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