Mazda launches “What Do You Drive?” ad campaign that puts the spotlight on…

Article by Christian Andrei, on April 13, 2011

Mazda has launched a national advertising campaign that touts its desire to produce vehicles that are fun to drive. This marks the first project of new advertising group -- Team Mazda -- which was created last October. The campaign highlights Mazda’s driver-focused approach in the design and assembly of its vehicles.

Viewers are asked in these TV spots what car they drive and their reasons for their choice. The ads have these lines: "We believe if it's not worth driving, it's not worth building. We build Mazdas.” The campaign uses the brand’s "zoom zoom" tag line, which is whispered towards the end of the commercials.

After Mazda ended its 13-year agreement with Doner of suburban Detroit, it hired the WWP Group of London in June 2010 for its global advertising efforts.

Team Mazda is part of the WWP Group. Mazda is working to recover some ground in the U.S. market where its sales rose by 15% through March while the industry went up by 20%.

Mazda had been able to maintain its 2% market share in the U.S. even past the financial crisis in 2009. In a statement, Don Romano, chief marketing officer for Mazda North America, said that the campaign aims to draw attention to the idea that Mazda doesn’t build cars for everyone but for “people who care about what they drive."

Mazda said that the campaign will begin during prime time programming on NBC and ABC. These TV spots are set to appear next on cable networks such as ESPN, TNT, Bravo and the Speed Channel.

Mazda’s new ad campaign aims to highlight the carmaker’s commitment to producing remarkably fun-to-drive yet well-crafted vehicles, as guided by the phrase “we don't build cars for everyone; we build cars for people who care about what they drive.” Titled “Anthem” and developed by new marketing partner Team Mazda, the ad portrays the carmaker’s innovation by emphasizing the attributes of the Mazda brand philosophy.

It conveys the carmaker’s history in terms of innovations, motorsports and design. To be shown with lengths of 30 seconds to 60 seconds, the spot centers on the details that define a Mazda, like how the steering wheel feels or how the vehicle responds to inputs.

Mazda plans to run the new campaign through TV, the Internet and cinemas through the next year. The first TV spots will air Monday and will appear on top-rated shows like The Mentalist, Dancing with the Stars, American Idol and the NHL Playoffs. Mazda also plans to air the spots on specialty channels like TSN, NHL Network, ESPN Classic, Discovery Channel and the Food Network. The ads will also be uploaded on YouTube and Facebook, and will come with social features that allow viewers to take surveys and "like," share and comment.

Ads in Flash and Rich Media will also be featured on MSN, Yahoo! and AOL. Mazda will launch a user-generated content contest later in the campaign. Don Romano, President of Mazda Canada and Chief Marketing Officer for Mazda North American Operations, remarked that for the next few years, Mazda will defy convention by introducing SKYACTIV Technologies, its new generation of eco-friendly products. Romano added that to make the public better understand SKYACTIV, there is a need to introduce the company and the reason why it does things the way it does.

Press Release

Mazda Launches All-New Advertising Campaign Asking 'What Do You Drive?'

Mazda Canada is launching an all-new advertising campaign that centers around the question, "What do you drive?"

The campaign is built around the core brand belief that, "if it's not worth driving, it's not worth building," and it is this basic statement that defines Mazda. The new campaign celebrates the company's rallying cry: Zoom-Zoom by highlighting Mazda's passionate attitude towards driving, its engineers' obsession over the details, and a rule-breaking innovative spirit.

Mazda's rule-breaking-breaking innovative spirit can be seen throughout its long history of overcoming challenges and taking a unique approach to overcome those challenges. Only Mazda could work nearly a decade on a lightweight roadster when nobody was making them anymore, and have it become the best-selling roaster of all time. Only Mazda could mass-produce the rotary engine when no one else could, and use that engine to win the 24 Hours of Le Mans. In short, Mazda has a history of defying convention.

The campaign strives to underscore Mazda's devotion to creating exceptionally fun-to-drive, well-crafted vehicles, with the phrase, 'we don't build cars for everyone; we build cars for people who care about what they drive'. The work, called "Anthem", was developed by new marketing partner Team Mazda and depicts Mazda's innovation by highlighting aspects of the Mazda brand philosophy. In words and images, it looks at Mazda's rich history in innovation, motorsports and design, as well as a singular dedication to crafting cars that are always exciting to drive. Cut in both :30 and:60 second versions, the spot focuses on the details that define a Mazda - the way the gear lever sits in the driver's hand, the way the steering wheel feels, the way the car simply responds to every input.

The new campaign will launch via television, online, cinema, and social media, then continue to run over the next year.

The first of the ads will debut Monday on television targeting the Mazda enthusiast. Over the course of the launch it will be seen on top-rated shows like The Mentalist, Dancing with the Stars, American Idol and the NHL Playoffs.

The ads also will air on specialty channels including TSN, NHL Network, ESPN Classic, Discovery Channel and the Food Network.

In addition to the on-air placements, interactive video ads will be featured on popular video sites such as YouTube and Facebook. The video ads will include social features allowing viewers to take polls and "like," share and comment on the ad. Flash and Rich Media ads will also run on key sites such as MSN, Yahoo! and AOL, and a user-generated content contest will be introduced later in the campaign.


"Over the next couple of years Mazda will defy convention again by launching its next-generation of eco-friendly products: SKYACTIV Technologies. In order to fully explain SKYACTIV and why the company chose to further develop the internal combustion engine instead of following what other companies are doing with hybrids and electric vehicles, we needed to explain who we are and why we do things the way we do. So now is the perfect time to tell our story."

Don Romano, President of Mazda Canada and Chief Marketing Officer for Mazda North American Operations

"In short, we are provoking the conversation about what you drive. This is a brand that at its very core has a passion for driving. It's a truth about who we are and what we've always stood for."

Neil MacLellan, VP, Team Mazda


Mazda Canada Inc. is responsible for the sales and marketing, customer service and parts support of Mazda vehicles in Canada. Headquartered in Richmond Hill, Ontario, Mazda Canada has a nationwide network of 169 dealerships.

Topics: mazda, advertising

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