By now, you've probably seen the commercials for Hyundai's new "Uncensored" campaign. They're pretty hard to miss, but on the off-chance that you're not much of a TV person, (a) congratulations, and (b) here you go:
In addition to those clips, however, the "Uncensored" campaign also includes an element that should look familiar to anyone who's seen Ford's Fiesta Movement in action (or its "Swap Your Ride" campaign): Hyundai is letting 125 non-Hyundai owners tool around in a 2011 Hyundai Sonata for one full month. Those drivers will post post their impressions to their own websites, Facebook pages, Twitter feeds, and YouTube channels, and Hyundai will also host their comments -- uncensored -- on the automaker's Facebook page. Brave move.
But if you're not one of the 125 lucky participants, don't fret: Hyundai is also planning a cross-country tour where the Average Joes or Jane can drop in, take a test drive, record a video of his/her impressions, and upload it directly to his/her Facebook page. Also brave.
Our take? While this may not generate quite the same buzz as the Fiesta Movement -- the participants of which were carefully chosen for their dynamic personalities and their social media skills -- this is a great move for Hyundai. If Malcolm Gladwell has taught us anything, it's that consumers value the opinions of their friends more than any other source of information. And while most people won't know the folks in those Hyundai commercials or the 125 Sonata drivers, they're approachable enough and normal enough to count as near-friends. Assuming all goes well -- and that nothing comes to light about clandestine censorship on Hyundai's part -- this should be an interesting campaign to watch. Potentially effective, too.
Need a press release? Have at it:
Consumers Star in Hyundai 'Uncensored' Integrated Marketing Campaign
Advertising Breaks July 1st; Online and Social Media Components Reinforce Consumers' Authentic Response to Test Driving Hyundai Models
FOUNTAIN VALLEY, Calif., July 1 /PRNewswire/ -- Hyundai will launch a new integrated marketing campaign in July starring everyday consumers. In a mall tour spanning from Atlanta to Chicago to Los Angeles in May and June, Hyundai captured the unscripted, unedited remarks of drivers as they tested various Hyundai models. Those impromptu remarks highlight the Hyundai "Uncensored" campaign. A total of six new spots will be joined by digital, radio, social media, experiential, CRM and point-of-sale components as the campaign ramps up in July and runs through the end of August.
"Hyundai 'Uncensored' was born out of the insight that consumers are most influenced by other consumers, so we captured totally organic conversations from people inside our cars and packaged them into an integrated campaign," said Chris Perry, vice president of marketing, Hyundai Motor America. "Going one step further, we're giving consumers the opportunity to drive our cars and tell their friends about the experience through social media components of this campaign."
The 30-second spots highlight Sonata, Santa Fe, Accent and Elantra as well as Hyundai's full model lineup. Messages include the peace of mind provided by Hyundai Assurance including America's Best Warranty and roadside assistance, design, value and Hyundai's industry-leading fuel efficiency. Advertising will air on both cable and network television, and outtakes will be posted to Hyundai's YouTube channel by mid-month. Hyundai's adverting agency, Innocean Worldwide Americas, is responsible for the creative.
The experiential campaign focuses on two key strategies. First, 125 non-Hyundai sedan owners will be given a new 2011 Sonata to drive for 30 days. Their comments will be posted – unscripted and unedited – on Hyundai's Facebook site. The second is a multi-city ride-and-drive which includes a video booth where consumers can film their drive impression and post video directly to their own Facebook page.