Acura hopes ad campaign for new TLX to help change reputation

Article by Andrew Christian, on August 14, 2014

Acura is hoping that its big-budget ad campaign for the new TLX will help it overhaul its “nondescript reputation,” according to Mike Accavitti, Acura’s brand manager. Accavitti said the new TLX, which replaces both the TL and TSX, should help revive a brand image that has gone stale. The ad campaign for the TLX will be Acura’s biggest ever, even topping that of the redesigned MDX.

Accavitti remarked that the TLX is a brand-new nameplate, so they need to tell consumers “what a TLX is.” The ad campaign is aiming to convey driving excitement with the tag line “It’s that kind of thrill” while featuring the engineering effort for new TLX.

An early version of a 60-second spot features shots of the TLX cruising across the desert or managing corners at Honda’s r&d center in Ohio. The action is set to Sid Vicious’ cover of the Frank Sinatra standard “My Way.”

Accavitti disclosed that the idea for the campaign was born from a meeting between his marketing team and Acura engineers in Ohio. Ed Beadle, senior marketing manager at Acura, the brand banked around 13 video clips that it can edit into shorter spots for TV and online.

The ads will underscore the TLX’s sporty performance and/or technologies like Siri Eyes Free iPhone integration or its all-wheel-drive system. The campaign was made by Mullen, a Boston-based agency that led creative on the MDX launch.

Around 40 percent of the TLX campaign’s media budget is allocated for broadcast TV as well as online streaming video of those programs. Acura will have “My Way” run on 25 cable networks starting Sunday. Almost a third of the advertising budget is earmarked on digital ads, while 21 percent will be allocation for buying time on sports broadcasts, like a month-long sponsorship of college football highlights on ESPN.

The rest of the budget will be spent on print ads, out-of-home and other areas. Acura will also implement a video “roadblock” on Facebook in August, which is estimated to reach every Facebook user. Acura is also planning homepage takeovers on yahoo.com and msn.com.

Acura is targeting existing customers as well as those who previously owned Acuras but left the brand. Acura is also targeting customers from luxury and mainstream brands.

Press Release

Acura Launches All-New 2015 TLX Performance Luxury Sedan with Biggest Marketing Campaign in Brand History

  • Acura TLX delivers "It's that kind of thrill" in 360-degree campaign  
  • "My Way" anthem spot captures passion of U.S. team of engineers and designers who developed the TLX
  • Bite-sized and clever creative deployed across multiple platforms for sustained launch effort through fall

Acura is launching the all-new 2015 TLX performance luxury sedan with the biggest marketing campaign in the brand's history. The TLX, which combines sports-sedan dynamic proportion, premium luxury refinement and super-handling performance, is the star of a 360-degree marketing campaign under the theme "It's that kind of thrill."

The marketing campaign launches on-air August 17 with the TV anthem spot, "My Way", which captures the passion of the team of Acura design, development and manufacturing engineers who created the new TLX. The emotionally engaging spot features a modern rendition of the iconic song My Way as the soundtrack for images shot onsite at the R&D and manufacturing facilities that were integral to the TLX development. "My Way," and eight additional 15-second spots featuring high-energy music tracks, will run on high-profile national TV programming throughout the late summer and fall.

"The TLX heralds a new era for the Acura sedan lineup and the scale of the marketing effort behind the launch signifies the importance of the model both to the brand and its position within the luxury sedan market," said Michael Accavitti, senior vice president and general manager for the Acura division.

 "The TLX delivers a thrill like no other and the marketing effort delivers that message front and center in an emotionally engaging way."

The entire campaign utilizes 'bite-sized' contextually relevant video and digital elements that demonstrate the thrill of driving the new TLX by focusing on specific product highlights, including on-board Siri Eyes Free voice-command capability, Precision All-Wheel Steer™ (P-AWS™) and the Acura exclusive, Super Handling All-Wheel Drive (SH-AWD™).

Integrated Media Placements and Digital Extensions
Acura will run a massive video road block on Facebook with TLX videos reaching nearly 100% of users starting in early September. On Twitter, Acura will run a unique Twitter Cards execution that will allow users to design a car directly within a Tweet. Acura will be using both Promoted Tweets and Promoted Accounts to support this initiative.

Additional awareness for the TLX will be generated via homepage takeovers on major web portals (Yahoo and MSN), and through unique social media "Thrillustrations" - custom illustrations created by New Yorkercontributing illustrators. TLX will also be supported with custom digital content on Slate, Business Insider andCar & Driver.

The TLX will be front and center on cable television with "My Way" running concurrently across more than 25 cable networks starting on August 17th.  Additionally, the TLX will be integrated into ESPN's SportsCenter with a month long sponsorship of top college football highlights.

To get customers up close to the TLX, the model will be the featured vehicle at The New Yorker Festival in October and the Sundance Institute NextFest film festival in Los Angeles in August.  Acura is also sponsoring a series of Pop-Up dinners across the country and select nights at the Hollywood Bowl; each venue prominently features the TLX. To capture attention on a large scale, TLX will be featured on several large wallscapes, billboards and street level displays in nine key markets.  

To see featured video elements from the TLX "It's that kind of thrill" campaign visit https://www.youtube.com/user/Acura and all campaign creative elements at http://acuracampaigns.com/.

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