Radically New Avalon Signals New Direction for Toyota in America
TORRANCE, Calif. (Jan. 7, 2013) – When Toyota set out to market its all-new 2013 Avalon, the automaker had to find an interesting way to showcase the vehicle’s modern styling, improved performance, innovation and elevated level of craftsmanship to help reposition the flagship sedan in the highly competitive premium mid-size segment. No small task.
Aimed at younger baby boomers ages 40 to 60, the radically redesigned 2013 Avalon embodies Toyota’s new brand direction and commitment to developing more emotionally compelling products. Extensive research revealed that younger boomers ages 40 to 60 are one of the fastest growing demographics online and regularly consume media through multi-screens. To reach this connected audience, Toyota and Saatchi & Saatchi LA created a fully integrated campaign that leverages multiple platforms and media partnerships to convey the vision behind its new design direction.
“We wanted to engage with our target audience where they spend time – online and on tablets – through rich, interactive experiences that display the art of design,” said Ed Laukes, vice president of marketing communications, Toyota Motor Sales, U.S.A., Inc. “We’re excited to bring a more emotionally styled design to the Avalon—a vehicle styled at Calty in Southern California and Michigan, engineered at Toyota Technical Center in Michigan and assembled at our manufacturing plant in Georgetown, Kentucky—and showcase it in our dynamic campaign materials.”
The radically new Avalon made its global debut on April 5 at the 2012 New York Auto Show. In a groundbreaking television partnership, Toyota introduced its 2013 Avalon Hybrid to the public on October 7 with a “Discover Toyota” showcase that aired on the HSN. Toyota was the first automaker to appear on the retail network.
Toyota partnered in October with Martha Stewart Living’s “American Made” initiative, which included Martha Stewart’s visit to the Toyota plant in Georgetown, Ky., where the Avalon is produced. The partnership also included exposure at the program’s flagship event in New York’s Grand Central Station with an Avalon on display. The partnership continues in print and online media.
The 2013 launch represents a dramatic redesign of the previous generation Avalon. The marketing campaign aims to help shift the product’s youthful appeal to a new audience. It is also the first major product launch under the new Toyota brand theme “Let’s Go Places” which was announced in September 2012.
The 2013 Avalon takes the art of making cars to new heights. Toyota’s designers and engineers were inspired to draw a “magic sketch” that led to the creation of an extraordinary vehicle. The launch spot, “Formula,” is a tribute to this development process.
In the commercial, Avalon emerges dramatically out of black liquid, representing the winning “formula” Toyota employed to craft its next-level design. The voiceover elaborates, “Let’s take every drop of courage, every ounce of inspiration, every bit of determination, and go where we’ve never gone before.” Part engineering, part alchemy, the commercial presents the radically new Avalon as a symbol for the future of Toyota.
“Formula” premieres on January 7 and will air on network and cable television shows such as Top Chef, Rizzoli & Isles, Royal Pains and Modern Family.
Digital media elements will feature a series of Web films on YouTube and Toyota.com. Digital programs, including those in partnership with Pandora, Hulu, Trip Advisor, CNET and Food Network, will cross over all digital screens—Web, mobile and tablet—to support the target audience’s media behavior.
Search engine-optimized content including demo videos and still images will be enhanced to show up in a simple Google search depending on what consumers search for. Television and tablet ads will work together, with broadcast ads designed to inspire consumers to interact with content on tablet devices.
To further engage with Avalon’s highly-connected audience, Toyota will create branded experiences on tablet apps. The campaign content is designed to flow from TV to tablet and engage consumers in the second-screen experience. Consumers can interact with the all-new 2013 Avalon through experiences on the Kindle Fire, iPad and iPhone platforms.
Avalon print ads will appear in a number of print publications, including Vanity Fair, Golf Magazine, Bloomberg Business Week, Time and The Week.
The Avalon will be included in a number of ride-and-drive experiences in the coming months that will allow consumers a chance to get behind the wheel and experience the vehicle first-hand. The vehicle will also make appearances at select Toyota-sponsored events and on-site activations.
To learn more about the all-new Avalon, visit www.toyota.com/avalon.
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Toyota Motor Sales (TMS), U.S.A., Inc. is the marketing, sales, distribution and customer service arm of Toyota, Lexus and Scion. Established in 1957, TMS markets products and services through a network of nearly 1,500 Toyota, Lexus and Scion dealers which sold more than two million vehicles in 2012. Toyota directly employs nearly 30,000 people in the U.S. and its investment here is currently valued at more than $18 billion. For more information about Toyota, visit www.toyota.com or www.toyotanewsroom.com.