GM Transforms Chevy Camaro into Ford Mustang

8 Jul

I finally saw the Transformers Movie, the 5th movie in a series of summer blockbusters, on the Saturday of an opening weekend. I say ‘finally’ because I live in the Entertainment Capital of the world, and there are Movie Screenings, Red Carpet Premiers, what-have-you at every major theatre Mon-Sun. If you don’t catch a flick there you can always head over to the fashion district downtown and get the latest bootlegged DVD…at least that’s what I hear.

So back to GM’s Product Placement campaign; I found it fascinating since during my day job (as the head of a fast growing Search Engine Marketing Department) I am often tasked with strategically integrating Search Marketing into all sorts of offline advertising campaigns (DR and Branding), promos, etc.

Here are the facts as I know them (after I ‘Googled It’):

  • Chevy Camaro Sales have been down so far that Chevrolet decided it best to just discontinue the model in 2002 after 35 years in production
  • Pontiac Sales were also down in 2005 after falling over the years
  • GM’s Retail Sales (non-commercial) were up 14.5% compared to the same month during the prior year

How did they do it?

You guessed it, Product Placement. Pontiac successfully relaunched their brand starting with the introduction of a ‘sexy gorgeous two-seat roadster’ with a very catchy Nameplate: Solstice (more on that over at my Mazda Trumps Pontiac post). I guess GM finally admitted something was broke over at Chevrolet and decided to use Product Placement would be a good fix for their flagship Make (brand). However, I did not see them using Search to also support it.

The real question is did anyone Google Transformers Car?

Me thinks so.

How did GM creatively placed this Brand along side a competitor (conquested Ford’s Mustang)?

The Camaro has always competed against what enthusiast’s would call Ford’s ‘Five Point Slow’ Mustang. In one scene of Transformers, the driver of the lead transformer which originally starts off as a Classic Chevy Camaro (Circa 1970) in the film, eyeballs a new 2007 Ford Mustang. The Transformer takes note and decides to literally Transform into a newer model that looks strikingly familiar:

-The MADD Man

PS: my pick for hot (new) toy this holiday season?
If you said ‘Transformers’ then you have chosen wisely.