Why not spend your time at the computer pretending to be maneuvering around a city? That seems to be the question Smart's latest advertising campaign is asking. But Daimler is actually interested in a different question. For some reason, Daimler thinks men dressed in hot dog suits and street gamblers are enough to make people click around their interactive site and find the answer to, "the question that everyone asks: 'What happened?'"

When we spoke to new Smart USA president Jill Lajdziak last month, she said that the Fortwo's "lifestyle message" would be emphasized going forward and that, "We need to make sure the marketing is as innovative as the car." Even though the new microsite is not just a project of Smart USA, we're not sure if it meets Lajdziak's stated goals. For our money, flash-intensive websites are annoying and slow to navigate, so we're pretty much not interested in "What happened?" Check it out for yourself here. The full campaign officially kicks off February 16.

[Source: Daimler]


Of fleeing "Hot Dogs" and a love-stricken filling station attendant: Surprisingly different: smart starts a new brand campaign

, Feb 12, 2010

Stuttgart – Surprisingly different time and again: on 16 February 2010 smart is starting a new international brand campaign and bringing fleeing "Hot Dogs", a filling station attendant and further surprising stories to cinema, TV and computer screens. The ten second spots each show a film excerpt that arouses interest and makes viewers curious to find out more. Accordingly, they end with the question that everyone asks: "What happened?" The microsite www.the-smart-class.com – the central element of the whole campaign – provides the answer. The long version of all films is shown in this web special.

"Our new brand campaign demonstrates the features of the smart fortwo in an entertaining and typical smart tongue-in-cheek manner. All viewers will enjoy it and it is an ideal combination of classic and new media", says Marc Langenbrinck, Managing Director smart brand and Head of Sales & Marketing smart. At www.the-smart-class.com internet users can discover the features of the smart fortwo in an interactive way – from its compact exterior, economy and environmental compatibility to its surprisingly large interior. Each film presents one of the typical features of the smart fortwo in a bizarre and amusing way.

The campaign is starting with two films and a further four will follow in the course of the year. At www.the-smart-class.com interested viewers will find the answer and the whole story behind the short off-beat clips. The protagonists in the films are part of an international, 3D animated city on the internet and invite viewers to find out more about smart. In addition, the web special gives those interested an opportunity to register for a test drive, order brochures and download wallpaper. Emailings and radio spots accompanying the campaign and an extensive online, viral and trade marketing package also guide visitors to the campaign microsite.

The brand campaign was jointly developed and implemented by smart together with four national organisations (Germany, France, Italy and Great Britain) and their BBDO agencies. smart has once again succeeded in realising a consistent international brand profile whilst considering the needs of its main markets. The films were shot in Los Angeles in December 2009

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