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GM CMO Batey Looks to Woo Millennials to Chevrolet With Big Screen Campaign

Posted by Dale Buss on February 18, 2013 06:02 PM

Now that Chevrolet has rolled out the first creative under its "Find New Roads" brand positioning, General Motors CMO Alan Batey wants to give the upbeat, product-oriented theme as much exposure as he can.

Batey tells brandchannel that, in addition to new vehicle-specific TV ads in the weeks ahead, Chevrolet will be doing more in-cinema advertising than ever before.

The original ad that aired during the recent Grammy Awards telecast on CBS—including vignettes separately featuring the Chevrolet Volt, Spark, Sonic, Corvette Stingray and Impala—"will be broken down into four standalone-product ads," Batey told us, "and we'll also be using that work quite extensively not just on TV but also in cinema," he said.

Chevrolet will be creating 90-, 60- and 30-second spots to be shown in U.S. cinemas during pre-feature advertising as a way of broadening the visibility for its "Find New Roads" theme, especially among movie-mad Millennials.

"We haven't done much in the cinema space," Batey said. "But the distinctive look and personality of the new creative makes great use of emotion and music. We're pretty excited about it."

While GM introduced the tagline and campaign in January as Chevrolet's most globally minded positioning yet, the initial run of advertising featuring "Find New Roads" will be in the United States. That's because several of the most important new-product launches for Chevy, out of a series of 13 planned worldwide for this year, will be in the U.S., including the 2014 Silverado, 2014 Impala and 2014 Corvette Stingray.

"Ingenuity" in Chevrolet and its products will be an oft-repeated theme of the brand's advertising from here on, he said. "There's not one size that fits all when it comes to that concept," he said. "There will be a common look and feel to our marketing around this truth of ingenuity. But it'll translate into the right creative for the right markets."

One important interpretation of Chevy's ingenuity will come during the second quarter when it introduces an overhauled version of its Silverado pickup truck. The launch will be crucial because it is GM's most profitable segment, and competition is stiffening there just as the U.S. housing recovery is bringing back many long-awaited customers.

But some critics already are dismissing as stodgy the planned changes in the exterior styling of the Silverado, alleging that it won't help much in a segment that has become increasingly styling-conscious.

Batey dismissed such criticism. "We know who our customer is and we know trucks and we know what they want in their truck, and that's what we've spent our time and focus on—truly making what we beleive will be the most accepted and most-wanted truck in teh marketplace," he said.

"While design is one reason people buy a truck, what we clearly know from our customers is that they want a truck to be strong and durable and the interior to be more luxurious than it was before, and they want the latest technology," Batey added, "and we've tried to deliver on that" in the 2014 Silverado.

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