The Oscars is one of those tentpole events in which one can be sure that automakers will participate. For Hyundai, that's particularly important as it aligns with its "Big Voices, Big Places" media strategy. The automaker, in its fifth consecutive year as the exclusive automotive sponsor of the Oscars broadcast, will run nine ads comprising seven 30-second spots touting as many models during the ceremony, and two 30-second ads during pre-show coverage.
Among the in-show ads are three new ones with a Tinseltown theme: "Equus the Trailer," "Paparazzi," and "Elevator Pitch" feature Equus, Genesis and Elantra, respectively, and are voiced by Oscar winner Jeff Bridges.
"Equus the Trailer" mimics an action-movie trailer, featuring Equus as the main character and the film's hero, even using that ubiquitous action-movie voiceover guy who uses superlatives like "colossal," "epic" and "astoundingly powerful" to tout the car.
Another ad plays on the Genesis model as a star being frantically photographed by a phalanx of paparazzi as the car drives down a road. An ad for the Elantra sedan has Bridges touting the vehicle with a how-to on doing a proper elevator pitch for a new film.
The other ads to air during the Oscars ceremony spotlight the Sonata Hybrid, Sonata Turbo, Santa Fe and Azera. Two of the spots debuted during the Super Bowl: "Epic Playdate“ features Santa Fe and "Stuck" the Sonata Turbo. Then there's a spot called "One Less Battery" touting the Sonata Hybrid battery warranty, and an ad for Azera called "Thanks."
Steve Shannon, VP marketing at the Fountain Valley, Calif.-based company, tells Marketing Daily that its status as official-automaker of the Oscars presents a situation that is diametrically opposed to its involvement in the Super Bowl. "It's almost like the mirror image," he says. "In the Super Bowl, we had incredible competition, fewer spots and bigger numbers. Here, we have no auto competition but lots of stories to tell [and somewhat smaller numbers, with about 40 million viewers]. Three-quarters of our lineup by volume is represented."
Finally, there is a pair of ads to air during the Oscar Red Carpet Live. One shows Elantra, sedan, GT and coupe, and another ad that first aired during the Super Bowl, "Team" featuring Hyundai's new Santa Fe.
The automaker says the multi-screen program includes a mobile play with soundtracks and connected television, and an extension across cable networks like AMC, FX and Sundance Channel, and sponsorship of ABC's Oscars Web site.
Shannon says that for the first time the automaker has bought a brace of tickets to the Oscars for its President's Award-winning dealers. He says the reward paradigm is also new, as it veers from a traditional sales-volume based recognition: This year, he says, it's all about dealers with top CSI (customer service index) numbers. "We think it's a great use of some terrific assets to offer these dealers tickets to events like the Super Bowl, the Grammy Awards, and Oscars."