Would You Touch Ron For A Durango?

by , Nov 19, 2013, 4:32 PM
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DodgeWho thought the "Ron Burgundy" promotional campaign for Dodge's 2014 Durango could get more outrageous than it already is? Yes, you have to hand it to Chrysler Group that they've figured out a way to do that. And the idea comes from a Texas dealership's yearly masochism campaign in the 1990’s where whoever could keep their hand on the truck the longest (it went for 27 hours straight once) won the vehicle. It spawned a documentary, "Hands On A Hard Body" that spawned a Broadway musical that shut its curtains in April.

You may not have seen the above, but you have probably seen the Will Ferrell character "Ron Burgundy" in videos touting the Durango in his capacity as official spokesperson for the vehicle. In the digital shorts, Burgundy extols the virtues of the vehicle while making it clear that he's a few trays short of a cube, as he would probably put it. 

To ride the coattails of Ferrell's next "Anchorman" movie coming around the holidays, Dodge is extending its Paramount Pictures partnership with "Hands on Ron Burgundy," which refers to the dealership's endurance campaign, but without as much physical pain. 

The program -- running until Nov. 30 on "Funny Or Die," of which Ferrell is a founder -- tests fans' perseverance using a computer mouse or touchscreen to place their "hands" on a digital image of Ron Burgundy. 

The automaker says that the contestant who "touches" Burgundy the longest in a single session wins the grand prize of an all-new 2014 Dodge Durango. Hundreds of additional prizes will be awarded, including three trips for two to New York to attend "Anchorman 2: The Legend Continues" movie premiere on Dec. 15. The company is promoting the contest at www.burgundydodge.com.

To keep their “hands” on Burgundy, people have to put the cursor inside a specific area on Burgundy's bod and then hold down the mouse button or smartphone button as long as possible. Needless to say, the hot spot has to change, otherwise it would be kind of easy to put a paperweight on the mouse or an alligator clip on your phone, grab a second phone and go about your business. There are also periodic breaks where contestants can watch videos and periodic games where contestants can earn bonus points.

To pull consumers to the site, the Chrysler division is running games and challenges to keep people there, and steep them in vehicle characteristics with five games that directly reference the humorous Burgundy videos. One game is about horsepower, which refers to a bit in which the fictive anchorman compares the vehicle to a literal horse. Another pays tribute to another video in which he suggests the car is full of babes. In the game, players have to control six of Burgundy's "babes" into the Durango's sunroof to sit in the passenger seats, filling the Durango's seven seats.  

“The widespread conversation the Ron Burgundy Dodge Durango campaign is generating has significantly increased awareness of the new Durango and is transforming that conversation into consideration,” said Chrysler’s chief marketer Olivier Francois in a statement. 

The company says visits to Dodge's Durango page are up 80% and that actions to find a dealer, and build and price a car, among other consideration tasks, have increased by more than 100%.

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