BMW ads hit the pedal on airtime

A series of five-second TV spots aim to pique consumer interest in BMW brands.

BMW Canada launched a unique, five-second television ad campaign this month to promote its 1 and 3 Series vehicles with the tagline ‘Joy is not a luxury.’ The blink-and-you-may-miss-them ads run in threes throughout a single commercial break, which Kevin Marcotte, director of marketing at Whitby, Ont.-based BMW Group Canada, says will help maintain awareness during the entire commercial period.

‘We’re struck by the fact that the ads are succinct; they have a clear message,’ Marcotte tells MiC. Created by Toronto-based Cundari, the spots target the 35- to 54-year-old skewed male demo, and are running on Global, CBC and CTV, as well as sports and specialty channels. Media was handled by The Media Company.

The campaign is leveraged by a search marketing component, which Marcotte says has delivered above average click-through rates in recent executions, and is therefore an important part of the campaign. ‘We’re pretty confident that this is going to help to drive awareness, and obviously complement the dealer advertising campaigns that are in market, predominantly in print.’

Production of the shorts, which will run through April, was more cost-efficient than creating a regular 30-second spot, Marcotte says. ‘We as always need to be as efficient as possible with our marketing dollars, so it’s definitely a plus,’ he says.

With the peak selling season (March through June) approaching, Marcotte says the luxury brand sees the opportunity to gain market share when overall the automotive industry is down by 20%, with the premium segment down by about half that. ‘Final executions will reference, through copy, the starting price point of the 1 Series, which is $33,900,’ says Marcotte. In the case of the 3 Series, the ads reference available no-charge upgrades, he explains.