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Driving Results for Walser Automotive

April 13, 2016

Planet Propaganda: Walser_Amanda_TV

Our client Walser Automotive Group felt like they were getting lost in a sea of sameness—a bunch of ads talking about 0% APR, no-money down, and holiday weekend door prizes. Walser’s needs were pretty straightforward: help distinguish them from their competitors with memorable, ownable, and innovative brand advertising.

Like many industries, the car business is rapidly shifting. Dealership groups like Walser sense a change in how people shop for cars. Web research is creating a more-informed consumer, and no-haggle national chains like CarMax are changing the buying experience.

The funny thing is, Walser has been ahead of the curve for years. They have a one-price/no-haggle policy, worry-free returns, and a no-hassle sales process. But brand awareness surveys showed that all the hard work they were doing as a modern, consumer-focused dealership group wasn’t paying off.

Before we started on a new ad campaign for Walser that's already showing great results (more on that below), our strategy team engaged in our Simplify process—moving from data, to knowledge, to wisdom, and ultimately landing on a new brand truth and manifesto. Through internal interviews, competitive analysis, consumer surveys, and a bunch of other data-focused stuff, we helped Walser find a brand positioning and consumer-focused brand truth that gave new life to the brand.

Once the Walser leadership team was aligned and energized around their new internal brand truth, we created a video that brought the brand manifesto to life. And while Walser introduced their new direction to their hundreds of employees across twelve dealerships, our creative team set to work on a new brand ad campaign.

The centerpieces of the new campaign were two 0:30 TV spots, which focused on creating an emotional connection with viewers through super slow-mo video of satisfied customers breaking into an irresistible smile. In an industry that often shouts in order to be heard, these ads sought to respect the viewer and create an intimate, person-to-person experience. The spots culminate in Walser’s new tagline: You Drive Us. A series of billboards helped drive the new consumer-focused message home.

After the initial campaign flight, success metrics have been positive across the board. Compared to pre-campaign benchmarks, Walser’s seen significant improvement in overall brand favorability, familiarity, and reported purchases. People who recall having seen the ads were much more likely to have Walser in their consideration set for their next car purchase, and were much more likely to recall Walser’s fast sales process and no-haggle pricing than those who didn’t. We’re confident that these ads give buyers a better understanding of Walser’s superior customer experience.

It’s been great to help yet another client find a brand truth that’s real and relevant, and it’s been a pleasure working on a campaign that addresses the new landscape of car buying by focusing on the importance of the customer experience.

Posted in Motion, Strategy