Friday
Jan182013

Cars.com Using Super Bowl XLVII Commercial To Fuel Long Marketing Drive

By Barry Janoff

January 18, 2013: Cars.com, which revealed several months ago that it would be returning to the Super Bowl broadcast, has shared some more — but not all — of the details of its 30-second spot and surrounding multi-media marketing campaign.

The on-line source for new and used vehicles said that the commercial to air on CBS during the broadcast of Super Bowl XLVII would come with the question, "Why Drama?"

According to Cars.com, the spot, running Feb. 3 during the first quarter of the game, would help to launch the company's 2013 "robust media plan," which will "be more than a single year execution" and also include print, radio, digital and such social media destinations as YouTube, Facebook and Twitter.

Cars.com's lead agency is McgarryBowen, Chicago.

Thirty-second spots have averaged $3.8 million, with some slots going for upward of $4 million, according to CBS.

The media buy on CBS marks Cars.com's sixth consecutive year as a Super Bowl advertiser.

"With a brand-new campaign, we wanted to build excitement for our ad and save its reveal for the Super Bowl," Linda Bartman, Cars.com's CMO, said in a statement. "Our new campaign is more connected to the car shopping experience and more compelling than ever. Fans should be ready for a more engaging feel from Cars.com advertising that is consistent wherever they see our brand."

In addition to McgarryBowen, other agencies on Cars.com's integrated team include Avenue (B2B), Edelman Digital (social), OMD (media buying), Optimum Sport (media buying), Prometheus (media buying) and Piston (digital).

The campaign seen during Super Bowl XLVI and subsequent marketing featured people whose confidence in using Cars.com was manifested in the form of a second head. Two spots that ran during Super Bowl XLV showed cars reading and glowing over their reviews on Cars.com.

"Our new campaign is more connected to the car shopping experience and more compelling than ever; fans should be ready for a more engaging feel."

Previous Super Bowl spots featured fictional people named Timothy Richmond and David Abernathy, who each had the confidence to overcome difficult situations in life except when it came time to buying a car — until they found Cars.com.

"We have heard from car shoppers that buying a new car can be overwhelming, and sometimes even stressful, so our new campaign shows how dealers help car shoppers have a drama-free buying experience by using Cars.com," said Bartman. "We think this message is one that will resonate with car shoppers. As has been the case for the last five years, the Super Bowl remains the perfect place to tell our story to an unprecedented audience."

Cars.com was formed in 1998 and is a division of Classified Ventures LLC, which is owned by such media companies as A.H. Belo, Gannett, McClatchy, Tribune and The Washington Post Co.

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