Mercedes Puts Viewers Behind The Wheel: Dish Net Deal Latest Interactive Auto Buy
The deal, which marks Mercedes first foray into interactive TV marketing, will offer the satellite TV subscribers an advance preview of new ads for the automaker's M-Class edition, which its dealers April 1, says Liz Birenbaum, the carmakers' supervisor for Internet marketing.
The first component in a marketing launch for the all new M-Class--which bills itself as a passenger car that feels like an SUV--consists of a 30-second TV spot called "Blank Page" that links viewers via an on-screen pop-up message to an interactive Web-like environment on the TV, Birenbaum said. From this iTV channel, viewers can use their TV remote to preview an expanded version of a TV advertisement called "Test Track," detailing the attributes of the new M-Class.
The creative agency that worked on the spots is Merkley + Partners, while Critical Mass worked on the interactive components.
"In the past we've only invited a small amount of people to get these sort of previews," says Donna Boland, a Mercedes spokeswoman. "But working with EchoStar on this iTV campaign allows us to target a wider array of consumers, but still keep the process manageable and still be sure we're attracting our core target."
The iTV and Web site ads will also highlight the upcoming M-Class Road Rally, a special type of car show that allows consumers who have opted-in to attend events where they can take a spin on all-terrain driving courses set up by Mercedes, Birenbaum said. The Road Rallys will visit 35 markets. The iTV ads will end when the car is released on April 1.
"So far, we've gotten an exceptional response, so as to whether there will be another iTV coming up, we'll just wait and see," Borland says.