Prius Campaign - Early Returns

Discussion in 'Gen 3 Prius Main Forum' started by Prius Team, Jun 22, 2009.

  1. Tech_Guy

    Tech_Guy Class Clown

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    Please don't put everything in Bold letters. It hurts my ears...

    Keith :(
     
  2. khowardrn

    khowardrn New Member

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    Exactly.... I think toyota should spend less on advertising and more on production. They can't keep up with the demand as it is. I want a winter gray prius V with Nav and it can't be found. I've had a deposit for almost three weeks sitting with a dealer who can't find one. The bottom line with advertising is that you have to actually have something to sell, and right now, toyota doesn't.

    I walked into a honda dealer a week after the insite launch and they had about 15 to 20 cars on the lot ready to sell. I haven't seen a toyota dealer with more than 1 or 2 cars and the prius launched over a month a go.

    As far as the ads, I think they could've been done alot better. They definitely bend left/tree hugger, etc. There are plenty of folks on the right, like me, who see a great many positives with the car; but the ads will not show it. It's a great 4 person, semi-luxury, efficient way to transport folks around. That appeals to everyone.
     
  3. wvgasguy

    wvgasguy New Member

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    I hope the advertising manpower are not the same people running the assembly line so if they are out selling the cars that's OK by me.

    I would love to be marketing a car where people are standing in line and complaining they can't get what they want. My poor chevy dealer is sitting on a lot full of cars and trucks and they are not even getting anything new until Sept.

    Your point? Honda's launch might have had adequate cars or it simply can't sell the cars it launched with. Two ways of looking at that
     
  4. wvgasguy

    wvgasguy New Member

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    Well for me the commercials were a little embarrasing, I catch enough grief at work since I announced my decision, but the commercial just add fuel to the fire.

    I wonder, will there be a set of green tights and a flower headpiece in my trunk when delivered? I might have to go out and buy a Prius suit.
     
  5. nineinchnail1024

    nineinchnail1024 New Member

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    I can't stand the new commercials, but to each his own. I feel like I'm watching a munchkin scene from the wizard of oz. Toyota really needs a commercial that stresses the starting price of the prius and its interior space. The facorite go-to arguments of prius bashers are its small size (which is a misconception) and its high price (which is also a misconception). There are plenty of mid-size cars with much less interior space than a prius, and there are plenty of gas only cars that are cost comparable with the prius, despite the common claim that the gas savings you get with a prius will never make up for its "hybrid premium" cost.

    In short: Stop the naysayers in their tracks.
     
  6. CenVal

    CenVal Member

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    That's a good description of what I see in the commercials and the message gets lost in my opinion... Great looking new design, sportier and more sophisticated, great technical advances, best fuel economy, and reasonable pricing.

    That's great for Toyota that people like the commercials but will they lead people to buy a Prius?
     
  7. Runabout

    Runabout New Member

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    I like the Prius commercials as they are entertaining and different from most other car commercials. Congrats PriusTeam for 2 out of the top 3 spots!
     
  8. TonyPSchaefer

    TonyPSchaefer Your Friendly Moderator
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    You're advertising the what?
     
  9. SageBrush

    SageBrush Senior Member

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    I am unconvinced, mostly because everyone in my greenie, yuppyish, disney loving family thought they were awful. OTOH, we watch very little TV, and don't have that medium's other commercial fare for comparison.
     
  10. Tideland Prius

    Tideland Prius Moderator of the North
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    Spend less on advertising and more on production. Like what?? Do you have a solution? Cause the last time I checked, a new plant is hella expensive.


    Maybe cause nobody's buying the Insight? and everyone pre-ordered a Prius (or has ordered one) so why would there be any on the lot? They would've all been spoken for.
     
  11. Rigbyfab4

    Rigbyfab4 Junior Member

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    I have to admit that I'm no big fan of the ads either. But at least they're different from all the 'regular' car commercials you see. I DO think the ads play to the already-existing Prius stereotype. Which doesn't really seem to help mainstream the vehicle. As a former acappella performer, I love the music.

    I would love to see a counter ad come out to the TDI one where the Prius just goes 'whooh' - that's the one my work friends mock the most.
     
  12. msirach

    msirach Member

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    I think the survey tells the story about why the Toyota lots have no Prius. They are sold!

    I think the advertising is GREAT! If it brings a debate, it has attention.

    Maybe it's a left brain/ right brain issue?

    Great job on the ads! Lead the pack and don't follow!
     
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  13. Tim in Hollywood

    Tim in Hollywood Junior Member

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    Hi Doug,

    Wow! I really appreciate the opportunity to get my thoughts heard by someone that may have some influence.

    My wife and I have talked quite a bit about the recent series of television spots. We agree that they are truly excellent productions. Good production design and obviously excellent post-production work. Unfortunately, I believe the spots falter by simply aiming for the wrong target.

    The biggest question is how many "greens" don't already know plenty about the Prius? I submit that the answer is zero (or very near zero). This is clearly what the target audience of these spots had to be.

    Sadly, I don't think these spots helped anything except to reinforce the Prius as a car that only the "greens" and the over 60 female crowd will want. Doesn't the Prius already have the "greens" locked up? Is the 60+ female demo really where this (very substantial) production budget and media buy should be aimed?




    I don't think that the next series of spots should show the Prius roaring across a mountain stream or pulling construction equipment...but Toyota Marketing is missing a huge demographic market segment by aiming at the aforementioned target.
    1. Demonstrate that the Prius is not a small, compact car that only pint-sized people can drive (I'm 6'4" and comfortable in my 2008 Prius).
    2. Show that the Prius has very cool and helpful technology (NOT stuff about the Hybrid Synergy Drive, that's boring to most anyone not on PriusChat). Tell them about the cool luxury-type features inside the cabin.
    3. Tell them about the mileage. MPG. MPG. MPG.
    If this were my campaign, it would start with two or three national spots using the items mentioned above (MPG mentioned prominently in all of them). I would partner these national spots with viral-type online videos that further demonstrate these features in humorous ways.

    • For example, last year, I read on PriusChat about a Prius owner that hauled (five?) bails of hay in his Prius.
    • How about a race between a Prius and a Hummer (or some other gas-guzzler)? Tortoise and the hare-style, the gas guzzler races way out in front, but runs out of gas. The Prius keeps on going for a couple hundred miles more.
    • Alternatively, both drive the speed limit, but due to frequent gas guzzler fill-ups, the Prius is way ahead at the end of the 500 mile "race." I have more ideas, but that's enough for now. I usually get paid for this stuff! :)
    • OK...One more: One thing I often hear (even from family members) is that "I need to drive my kids to baseball/football/softball/soccer practice, so I need an SUV to haul the equipment." Incredulous, I ask how much equipment they have? Invariably, it's basic stuff that in no way requires an SUV (a few bats, balls, gloves, shoes, etc). Show everyday tasks and uses for vehicles...that the Prius can do...at 50 MPG. Maybe showing some families that have converted from SUVs to the Prius?
    That's all for now. Contact for more ideas! ;)
     
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  14. nparker13

    nparker13 Member

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    The ads, to me, achieve the goal of broadening the Prius audience beyond the early adopter audience. However, I feel like the Prius is on a cutting edge of technology which is not demonstrated by the commercials.

    Most likely a Prius buyer seeing the commercials would buy it for efficiency and green image, and would be less concerned with buying the advanced technology the car has to offer. By showcasing the technology (similar to the YouTube series...which I'm impressed with the presence of features demos, great job there), you could attract an audience who would be willing to spend more on technology (even though it may be a smaller audience).

    It's a fine line b/c of the overlap with the Lexus technology (you dont want to cannibalize sales of possible Lexus customers), but the target should be more of the younger, Gen Y buyers who would be interested in technology, efficiency, and value.
     
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  15. gliverm

    gliverm Junior Member

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    I appreciated the creativity of the ads and therefore liked them a lot. I looked them up on via links from PC and wandering around YouTube because I pretty much am not in contact with my TV unless there is absolutely nothing else to do.

    Yep I think the ads seem to focus at a similar market as before. Did not notice Prius ads in the past. Just noticed the cars on the roads. Do more ads make the car more appealing or do the ads themselves make the car more appealing? MMMmmm sort of but I live in the land of the SUV.

    The guys I work with that are into cars are very aware that the car gets better gas mileage than other cars on the road. The ones that are SUV/truck owners I think are becoming more and more interested in keeping the SUV/truck to haul their toys but park them opting for a more fuel efficient solution. The sting of last summers gas prices is still too recent of a memory to them. Being engineers they see the logic that eventually the sting will return and they want to have a better solution in place. Engineers can be cheap (yes I'm one too) so maybe these guys will be the ones waiting for the used ones to start showing up.

    I agree with the trend of statements that the cars need to be advertised to be more manly than they are to attract even more attention to the Prius. My husband loves the car too but he isn't an SUV owner who is use to having a macho image. He is a mommy missile driver (minivan) so almost anything is cooler.

    So another advertising angle is just me having the car. Most popular questions I've had from the guys at work are about battery life and acceleration. I've offered them the info I've learned from PC along with my brief experience. Many have commented on how much nicer and sportier the car is when they see it for the first time. Many have said they will be interested in seeing how it goes for me. What can I say . . . I'm one of the trendsetters at work.

    Mostly rambling I know but anywho . . .
     
  16. SageBrush

    SageBrush Senior Member

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    I wonder if Toyota wants Prius to siphon off Corolla or Camry customers. My guess is no, which may explain the limited expansion of marketing to demographics outside of the greenie and techie crowds. Prius still has a lot of 'new_thing' going for it, that allows Toyota to charge a premium when the car is bundled with gadgets.

    It's a marketing phase. The sooner Toyota decides to let Prius conquer the world the better. Detroit made a fatal error in deciding to suck dry their devotees by building cars with poor longevity, while the Japanese makers realized that stellar quality would expand their markets much more than the 'lost' sales from owners not forced to buy. I'm not saying that the Prius has poor quality obviously, but the pitch focusing on current owners to upgrade is just wrong.

    I probably shouldn't by posting in this thread at all, since I find most marketing inane. Having said that, this is the pitch that I think would appeal to me, and perhaps a wide swath of people:

    For some people, one single motivation drives car buying choices: luxury for some, price for others, fuel economy for others, tech toys for you know who. For people who want it all: the 2010 Prius.
     
  17. steve44

    steve44 New Member

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    I agree Tech Guy, EVERYONE knows about the "green"ery of the Prius. It's time to focus on the function! For me, the Prius is almost there in terms of marketing to the mainstream. It just needs to shift it's marketing while not compromising it's green focus behind the scenes. It's got everything a normal driver wants (in my opinion that means: roomy, cargo space, power[with pwr mode], safe, and technology. Toyota should focus on those things more than green.

    Now, let's be honest here. The car looks great COMPARED to all other hybrids. But the car looks like a vajayjay should be driving it. It looks...can I say it on this forum...gay! It still has that image. I would not buy one for myself. I'm glad my wife has it because I can play with the technology and drive it a couple times a month and that's about it. Prius should also try to focus on eliminating this poor image...how? No idea. With all that negativity said, I'm VERY impressed with the internal features and the way it drives. VERY impressed! It's not better than many other cars but compared to other hybrids it is.
     
  18. HTMLSpinnr

    HTMLSpinnr Moderator
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    Here's some personal anecdotal observation - I drove my car through our local Goodwill to drop off some clothing and unused household items. The guy immediately recognized the car as the 2010 Prius and asked if it had the solar roof. His accomplice could care less though. Another co-worker had also mentioned "Did you know those have solar roofs?". "Yea, mine does too!" I replied. Apparently the advertising is hitting "some".
     
  19. The Electric Me

    The Electric Me Go Speed Go!

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    Well sarcastically I'm tempted to say that I think the "Harmony" Ads apparent popularity is a sure sign of the coming apocalypse but that would just sound like I'm being petty. So instead...

    • Does Toyota really understand its customers?
    • Do they know how to make Prius more appealing to the mainstream?
    • Don't they know that Prius doesn't need to be labelled as even more "green" than it is?
    I would say, "likeability" of the ad doesn't mean Toyota deserves a Yes to these questions. Likeability really only means it's a "new" ad and people named Nielsen evidently like a catchy song and avante garde theatre.

    Does Toyota understand it's customers? I think the current ads show a understanding of a large segment of customers Toyota already has reached for The Prius. I don't think the new ads push the envelope and reach potential new customers, infact the polarizing almost "Greener than Thou" attitude of the commercials I think actually will be off putting to a lot of Non-Prius consumers.

    Do they know how to make Toyota more appealing to the mainstream? In my opinion, the product itself shows that Toyota is trying to mainstream the Prius. So far the US released ads do not reflect the same mainstreaming that is evident within the new Prius itself.

    Don't they know that Prius doesn't need to be labelled as even more "green" than it is? Well, I agree with Toyota marketing on this one. Being "green" is now a mainstream attribute. Even people who aren't really your typical composting, recycling, organic food eaters like and perceive the idea of being green as being positive. I don't think communicating Prius as being green is counter productive to mainstreaming. However, I would say that if you are trying to reach a new audience, or a mainstream audience should Prius "green creds" necessarily be the #1 message in the advertising? How about flipping it around and promoting the "regular" car attributes of The Prius more, and then use being green as the Bonus Kicker? At least in a few ads?

    Even though the voice overs in these ads do indeed promote features, size, driveability the overall feel of the ads is that the Prius is some type of almost magical, otherwordly vehicle that's use actually makes the world around it magically healthier. Green is good and mainstream. Magical and "Greener than Thou" is BAD. IMO.
     
  20. nparker13

    nparker13 Member

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    I feel you here. When I went to test drive it, there was another guy there looking at it too, we were talking about the image of driving this car, and it really needs to change.

    I love it because of the technology and afford-ability. It's practical, not 'cool' unless you're into the whole green movement with tons of bumper stickers on the back of your car (sorry, not pointed at anyone in particular, thats just the image I get when thinking about it).

    When I tell my friends I'm trading in my BMW 3 series for a 2010 Prius, I have to preface it with, 'I'm buying it for the tech', and they still look at me like I'm crazy. After talking about it for a while, they'll hear how great of a decision it is (cost vs other comparable cars with same technology, cost of fuel, quality, intelligent parking assist [always gets 'em]), but it's that gut reaction that needs to be addressed, and ads with people dressed up as trees does not help.
     
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