Back to advertising this week and with a winner…at least I think so. Let’s see what you think.
Cadillac is a brand I don’t normally pay much attention to. Who does? They’ve been back in the pack for quite some time now. The word “Escalade” seems like the only time we hear about Cadillac anymore.
But that could change. Cadillac’s new wave of advertising—and cars—shows promise.
Check out this new commercial for the Cadillac SRX Luxury Crossover SUV:
What’s not to like about this ad?
It’s so understated, elegant and positive, it evokes a sense of what this brand wants to be all about.
Concept and attention to detail
The man in the SRX is not driving down a noisy city street. He’s driving in a beautiful neighborhood on a rainy day. The start of the ad with just the noise of the tires moving through the soaked streets and then the quiet inside of the car with sports news on the radio sets that “everything’s just right” tone.
Then, a trash truck, big and noisy and representing the opposite of elegance, almost ruins this man’s perfect day. His life starts to flash before him as he hits the brakes, bracing for what he thinks is certain doom. But the car stops immediately and all is well.
“Your life will have to flash by even faster,” says the voiceover, as his flashback screeches to a halt also.
I love that line, and it’s tied to all the positive music and imagery we saw in the driver’s flashbacks. The commercial then sends you off with the same happy music and the car driving off to a sunnier spot.
Understated, positive, perfect.
For those of you who don’t know, when driving in rain or through puddles, you’re supposed to tap your brakes here and there to get the water off before you brake to stop. Cadillac introduces a feature that does that for you.
In commercials lately, we’ve seen cars that park themselves (Ford, Lexus) and cars that stop themselves (Mercedes). What I like about this Cadillac is that the driver still has control. The driver stops the car, but the brakes make that stop better and quicker.
Cadillac sounds and looks like a brand that finally knows what it’s doing. Even their tagline has a bold confidence to it that sounds like a brand that’s not leaving room for any doubts.
“We don’t just make luxury cars, we make Cadillacs.” A statement that gives the impression they’re already in the top spot.
Cadillac understood that incentives were the way to go in the darkening economy, that even luxury buyers were looking for deals. And it worked. For the first time since June 2005, Cadillac sales topped those of Lexus and Mercedes and were only second to BMW’s.
Jim O’Donnell, president and CEO of BMW of North America, said Cadillac’s edgy styling and its popular SRX SUV have helped the brand emerge as a legitimate competitor to BMW. (Source: Bloomberg)
“There’s a new generation of people buying Cadillacs,” O’Donnell said. “They used to say that people wouldn’t buy their father’s Cadillac. Well, now it’s the grandchildren that are buying them.”
Knowing their target audience is one big reason for Cadillac’s success. Cadillac seems to be making some very smart moves and this latest SRX commercial is another one of them.
Mercedes still doesn’t see Cadillac as a competitor, but they might want to rethink that. With impressive styling, strong advertising and a clear vision of its target audience, Cadillac may just surprise them…and you.