Toyota Reveals Third-Generation Prius Campaign
14 MAY 2009
TORRANCE, CA - Toyota Motor Sales (TMS), USA, Inc., along with its advertising agency Saatchi & Saatchi Los Angeles, today announced the official launch of its marketing campaign for the all-new 2010 Prius - "Harmony Between Man, Nature and Machine".
This fully integrated marketing effort explains how consumers can get virtually everything they want for themselves in a car - advanced technology, extra power, space, safety and 50 miles per gallon - all while providing what nature craves most: fewer smog-forming emissions. The campaign emphasizes that, for the first time, a car company has struck a balance between the needs of man and nature - by building the third-generation Prius.
The third-generation Prius campaign reaches consumers where they live with real-world installations, deep social networking and digital programs, and traditional media including television commercials that employ a visual technique never before seen in the U.S.
To reach potential Prius buyers, Toyota is incorporating useful tools to improve their everyday lives. Harmony Installations will bring to life the idea of harmony between man, nature and machine in cities across America:
- Oversized solar flower sculptures will be placed in highly interactive areas such as public parks. These sculptures, which include free Wi-Fi access, will serve as seating environments and charging stations for people to recharge their spirits as well as their mobile phones and laptops.
- Solar ventilation bus shelters will demonstrate how solar panels on Prius' available Solar Roof are designed to help cool the parked vehicle by providing a comfortable space for bus riders.
The flower sculptures and solar ventilation bus shelters will debut in early July and travel to a half-dozen large cities across the country over the summer and early fall. In addition, with Harmony "Floralscapes," Prius will be "in full bloom" alongside select California highways, with living billboards made of flowers, a first in the U.S.
"Prius has emerged as a symbol of our time, empowering people to see how each individual can play a role in making the world a little bit better," said Kim McCullough, corporate manager of marketing communications for TMS. "To launch the third-generation Prius, we're bringing Prius' eco-friendly technologies and optimistic spirit to the people where they live, work and play."
The Prius customer is looking for community and inspiration online as well as offline. For the third-generation Prius launch, Toyota is making an unprecedented foray into social networking with deep programs on Facebook, Twitter and HowStuffWorks. All of the social media sites are integrated with each other and with multiple other touch points of the campaign. Toyota will be rolling out useful tools, such as a carbon emissions calculator, on these social networking applications over the coming months, with additional announcements to follow.
The digital portion of the third-generation Prius campaign began with a series of highly successful events earlier this year, where Toyota invited online mavens to be the first to experience the new vehicle. Toyota will kick off the public digital campaign with MSN and Yahoo homepage takeovers on May 28 and June 15, respectively. The digital campaign includes a Prius experience site on www.toyota.com, a mobile Web site, innovative banners, site sponsorships and custom programs. A mobile campaign will begin this summer.
The TV, print and outdoor advertising forge new visual ground for Toyota and establish an instantly recognizable Prius identity. The TV spots are directed by Hideaki Hosono, known as "Mr. Hide" (pronounced hee-day), represented by production company the Sweet Shop. They employ a cinematic technique to depict the harmony between man, nature and machine. A utopian landscape is made entirely out of people - the sun, clouds and even blades of grass are depicted by people moving in unison. The third-generation Prius commercials are Mr. Hide's first for the U.S. market. His latest feature film, Donju, will be exhibited at the Cannes Film Festival and has its worldwide premiere in Tokyo this week.
The first TV spot from the campaign, "Harmony," will premiere during the season finale of Castle on ABC, Monday, May 11, followed by presence in multiple season finales including Lost on ABC and 30 Rock on NBC. Prius will have cable presence on a number of networks including Discovery, Bravo, TNT, TBS and USA. Print media highlights include thought-leader outlets such as Fast Company, Wired, TIME and The Week, along with mass-reach publications such as Better Homes and Gardens, People and Entertainment Weekly. Prius will also make an appearance at popular events including the Summer Dew Tour, a number of music festivals and the Life Time Fitness Series Race to the Toyota Cup triathlons.
There have been three generations of Prius in the U.S. and Saatchi & Saatchi LA has launched them all, starting with the first-generation Prius in 2000. This is Saatchi & Saatchi LA Executive Creative Director Mike McKay's first campaign on behalf of Toyota.
"With the new Prius, Toyota has improved upon an icon. They've added horsepower while increasing fuel economy and lowering emissions," said McKay. "Saatchi & Saatchi LA is taking that icon to the masses and advancing the idea of harmony between man, nature and machine. We're doing it in ways that are as innovative as the Prius itself."