Just in time to further boost Toyota's comeback in the U.S. market, the Toyota brand has come up with a new tagline — "Let's Go Places" — that it's promoting starting today on its website and other messaging.
As an exercise in gauging the wisdom of switching to a new advertising slogan, quick — what has Toyota's tagline been lately? Of course, this lack of memorability of its marketing message is one big reason for Toyota's new move. It's been "Moving Forward" since 2004.
Another reason is that the automaker wanted to reflect what it called, in a statement, its "commitment to more exciting products." Over the last several years, a paucity of new sheetmetal, and the relative lack of excitement created by the new products Toyota did introduce, have been as responsible for the brand's swoon in the U.S. market as its 2010 troubles with recalls and its problems last year as a result of the earthquake and tsunami.
The company says the new theme represents the vision of Toyota CEO Akio Toyoda, a racing nut and something of an iconoclast in a traditionally reserved corporate culture. Toyota revealed "Let's Go Places" at its national dealer meeting today in Las Vegas and soon will integrate it into all marketing communications.
"'Let's Go Places' speaks to the evolution of Toyota and our commitment to leading through innovation, enriching lives and connecting with consumers in new ways they define," said Bill Fay, Toyota's group vice president and general manager, in the statement. "It is energetic, aspirational, inclusive and very versatile."
The new tagline also comes along at a time when Toyota is feeling its oats quite a bit once more. August sales in the U.S. were up by nearly half for the Toyota brand over August 2011, which marked the low point of Toyota's supply-chain problems last year.
In any event, Toyota is hoping that "Let's Go Places" registers as strongly with consumers as its most recent notable slogan, "Oh What a Feeling!" That one has been mothballed for a quarter-century, although the slogan lives on in at least one market — Australia, where the tagline is still front and central, such as this event below.