Honda dings 'meh' hybrid alternatives in new campaign for the Insight
- Honda debuted a campaign, "Fight Mehdiocrity," supporting its 2019 Insight hybrid vehicle, per news shared with Marketing Dive. The effort highlights the vehicles uniqueness while depicting other similar cars as "meh," or not very exciting.
- The push includes a 30-second TV spot, "World of Meh," which shows several beige-colored cars displaying terms like "meh," "blah" and "ugh." A red 2019 Honda Insight drives by a pod of them and steals the drivers of the other cars' attention. Creative is running on Honda's digital and social media platforms, with videos showing the "mehmobiles" featured in the commercial.
- Honda also created out-of-home ads in Los Angeles, New York and San Francisco. The Insight will also be featured in homepage takeovers on Yahoo, MSN and YouTube around major sporting events, including the NFL kickoff, NBA opening week and the Little League World Series. Honda will additionally integrate the hybrid vehicle into Gimlet lifestyle podcasts with native content.
With creative centered on the term "meh" — often used by internet-savvy millennials — and heavy mobile and social media elements, Honda is hoping to boost brand awareness among younger audiences in the market for a car. Appealing to younger consumer sets like millennials has been an uphill effort for some automakers, as members of the age group aren't buying as many cars as older generations and are also more likely to consider environmental factors along their path to purchase.
Beyond the digital and social media elements of Honda's campaign, the native podcast integrations might also prove resonant, as millennials tend to enjoy the audio format. Marketers are broadly upping their podcast investments as the channel's popularity grows. Podcast ad revenues hit an estimated $314 million in 2017, an 86% year-over-year increase, according to research from the Interactive Advertising Bureau (IAB). Ads integrated or edited into programming, as they are through Honda's Gimlet partnership, made up 58% of the podcast ad inventory last year, the IAB found.
Because millennials often begin their product searches online, automakers are ramping up their digital efforts, on podcasts and elsewhere, to catch the age group at the start of their shopping journey. Hyundai last week launched a digital showroom on Amazon that lets consumers review vehicle details, schedule test drives and locate dealerships. Toyota has also seen success in lifting purchase intent among millennials buyers by sponsoring live streams of music festivals with Oath.
"Fight Mehdiocrity" follows several other marketing efforts by Honda to appeal to millennials. In February, the company created a targeted social media campaign where people could acknowledge their friends' achievements and nominate them on Facebook or Twitter for a personalized awards video. Last year, the carmaker also launched an integrated campaign for its 2018 Fit Sport targeting diverse millennial audiences through comedians, influencers and social media.