New Mercedes station wagon “starring” in an opera
Mercedes-Benz focusing on individual test-drive opportunities for market launch of new station wagon
Innovative online presentations with interactive product information, exclusive reports on Mercedes-Benz TV, and a short film at FLOADED.com
Mercedes-Benz has kicked off a comprehensive marketing campaign for the new C-Class station wagon. The integrated campaign, which will be launched on the market on December 1, 2007, features numerous communication activities across all media channels and is designed to support the sales launch of the station wagon version of the C-Class - the best-selling model series in the Mercedes-Benz portfolio. All the ads, in all types of media, will present the new station wagon on a stage - as the “star” of a modern opera. The opera theme was especially chosen to highlight the great presence and agility of the new model.
“In a manner similar to the approach used with the launch of the new C-Class sedan, Mercedes-Benz is seeking to motivate existing and potential customers to experience the station wagon’s outstanding features for themselves,” says Dr. Olaf Göttgens, Vice President Brand Communications Mercedes-Benz Cars. “Along with proven traditional communication instruments, we will once again also be focusing strongly on various forms of hands-on experience with the vehicle and online communication. Measures here include exclusive driving events, a Mobile Marketing Special, and communication via innovative platforms such as Mercedes-Benz TV and FLOADED.”
Traditional print ads and a TV commercial
The print campaign will be launched on November 14, 2007, with three different ads - i.e. three opera acts - in high-circulation magazines, and it will later be extended to daily newspapers. As with most other communication measures for the model, the print ads will have as their centerpiece a palladium-silver C-Class station wagon on a stage, flanked by a curtain and background scenery. The message of each of the three ad designs will be conveyed by means of their background scenery and a powerful statement, such as: “Act 2: A grandiose driving experience in every curve.”
A TV commercial lasting 30 or 45 seconds is to be broadcast by public and private television stations that reach large audiences, depicting the C-Class station wagon in “The Battle Against the Wind.” In this act of the C-Class station wagon opera, the wind attempts - and fails - to overtake the vehicle. It then goes into a rage, as a storm begins to brew and bolts of lighting are shot from the heavens. The C-Class then swerves to avoid a tree felled by the lightning, once again demonstrating its impressive agility. As in an actual stage production, the vehicle remains stationary, with props moving by it and special camera and lighting techniques creating the illusion that the car is being driven along the stage. The commercial will also be shown during the in-flight entertainment program on Lufthansa flights. Shortly before the official launch of the commercial on TV stations, Mercedes-Benz TV will premiere the commercial and also present a “making-of” show. The campaign for the C-Class station wagon was developed in cooperation with Mercedes-Benz’ lead agency Jung von Matt, and it will be supplemented on the German market by extensive CRM and retail marketing measures, as well as radio commercials and large-format billboards.
Innovative online communication with interactive product information
Various online media will serve as a wide-ranging and entertaining forum for the international campaign. The Mercedes-Benz websites for individual countries will offer customers and anyone interested in the new C-Class station wagon extensive product information and the opportunity to view a self-configured model from various perspectives in the 360° Zoom Colorator. The software here allows users to select any combination of the model’s various equipment lines, color options, alloy wheels, and interior designs - all according to their personal tastes.
Mercedes-Benz TV broadcast the world premiere of the C-Class station wagon at the IAA Motor Show. The station’s market-launch coverage will include product information features and the first driving report on the vehicle from a driving presentation in Mainz.
FLOADED.com has also been offering an initial look at the new C-Class station wagon since mid-September. The Mercedes model and the SLR McLaren Roadster are two of the main “characters” in a short film titled “The Illusive”. Loaded Film Entertainment (FLOADED) is the new innovative advertising platform from teamWorx/UFA and Gruner + Jahr. The site shows short, high-quality brand-placement films and offers interactive features.
C-Class station wagon Mobile Special
As for its launch of the new C-Class sedan, Mercedes-Benz is also presenting an innovative Mobile Special to attract the attention of customers and potential buyers for the station wagon model while they’re on the move. The special was first made available for downloading during the model’s world premiere at the IAA International Motor Show, where the public was able to access it at the Mercedes-Benz stand via Bluetooth. The associated mobile client software can be obtained by sending a text message to special numbers in each country where the model is offered. It can also be accessed directly from Mercedes-Benz websites serving participating markets. Users who access the software receive images of the new station wagon’s interior and exterior, and they also are provided with technical data. Customers can even configure their model and download films, photos, and engine sounds to their mobile phones. The C-Class station wagon Mobile Special is available as a Java application that runs on more than 40 of the most commonly used mobile devices, and in a simpler WAP-version for phones that are not Java-enabled.
Focus on the car-customer encounter: customers to experience the new C-Class station wagon’s great presence and agility first-hand
Given the very positive results of the driving events for the market launch of the new C-Class, Mercedes-Benz has decided to once again directly appeal to existing and potential customers for the station wagon. The encounter between car and customer is thus a key element in a package of measures geared toward very personalized interaction with customers.
There will be two types of driving events. The first will have Mercedes-Benz addressing existing and potential customers in various vacation regions, while the second type will feature presentations at selected upscale shopping centers and malls, highlighting the new station wagon’s attractive features, such as its spacious cargo area.
Between December 2007 and April 2008, vacationers at selected Robinson Club resorts will be able to enjoy an entirely new driving experience, for example, while guests at various vacation resorts in Fuerteventura and Turkey will be offered opportunities to drive the new C-Class station wagon in a relaxed atmosphere. All driving presentation participants can look forward to enjoying the comfort, spaciousness, and agility of the new station wagon as they drive it along exciting routes in the regions where they are vacationing. Because the new Mercedes-Benz station wagon offers superior driving performance in ice and snow as well, the driving events will not be limited to warm, sunny vacation regions but will also take place in winter sport vacation spots such as Serfaus, Fiss Ladis, and Amadé (Austria).
Mercedes-Benz will also light up the holiday season in December 2007 and January 2008 with opportunities for spontaneous test drives for the public, which will be held at a number of upscale shopping centers and malls in Germany.