Chevrolet’s new ad firm to decide fate of ‘Chevy Runs Deep’ theme line

Article by Christian Andrei, on April 3, 2012

The new advertising agency of Chevrolet is expected to make a decision this summer on whether to get rid of the 18-month-old theme line, "Chevy Runs Deep." General Motors marketing boss Joel Ewanick, who prefers "theme line" to "tag line", said that this will be the first order of business for advertising agency Commonwealth, which was awarded Chevy's worldwide account last week. 

The effectiveness of the slogan has been a central question during the almost two-year term of Ewanick as GM's marketing head. The theme line was developed by Goodby, Silverstein & Partners, which was handpicked by Ewanick. San Francisco-based Goodby is owned by ad conglomerate Omnicom Group.

It comprises half of Commonwealth. McCann Erickson Worldwide, owned by New York-based Interpublic Group of Cos., is the other partner in the business. 

The theme line was launched in the fall of 2010 together with the debut of the Chevy Cruze. At that time, Ewanick told The New York Times that it was meant to "rekindle a passion, a love affair" with Chevrolet. He further stated that there is a "little nod" to their history and "a lot more" about where they are heading. There were mixed reactions to the theme line.

Some advertising specialists have criticized the campaign, stating that it lacks a clear meaning or an emotional equity similar to classic Chevy slogans such as "Like a Rock" and "Heartbeat of America." 

In a blog post last year, former Chrysler Group marketing chief Julie Roehm (then a consultant) commented that the "Chevy Runs Deep" theme line was "a terrible tag line" particularly when compared to the former Chevy tag lines. Even Ewanick himself has questioned the uniformity of the ads founded on the "Chevy Runs Deep" banner.

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