- Ram, a Stellantis brand, has teamed up with rock band Foo Fighters in a new campaign that celebrates parents, coaches, teachers and anyone else who plays a supportive role in children's lives, according to a press release. "Spotlight" will feature three video spots running across TV, digital and Ram's social media accounts. The first two ads, "Rock Star" and "Overtime," were released upon launch and are narrated by Foo Fighters' frontman Dave Grohl.
- The campaign is a tribute to everyday "rock stars" who stand firm as mentors and leaders even in the most challenging of times. Foo Fighters, whose 2021 song "Making A Fire" scores the video ads, share a long history with Ram, having used a Ram van to first embark on the road 25 years ago, according to the brand's statement.
- "Spotlight," which was created by Austin, Texas-based agency GSD&M and G7 Entertainment Marketing, sees Ram further leaning into musical branding creative, its second such campaign of the year and the latest example of a growing marketing trend with major hit-or-miss potential.
Ram's video ads demonstrate that the truck maker is serious about musical branding as it employs its second popular artist in two months to frame a campaign and marketing message. This time, well-established rock band Foo Fighters is featured to highlight Ram's "Built to Serve" mission, which is manifested in the ads' theme of recognizing the leadership of everyday heroes. While the campaign's key sentiment hinges on the significance added by the challenges of the pandemic, "Spotlight" also seeks to move past COVID.
By tapping Foo Fighters, Ram is hoping to once again reap the benefits in consumer perception afforded by successful musical partnership. The presence of Dave Grohl, one of the most recognizable figures in modern rock and an artist not shy about the influence of his childhood heroes, serves to lend credence to the campaign's tributary messaging. In March, Ram made a similar effort by teaming up with Grammy-winning country singer Chris Stapleton in a series of identity-focused ads for which the artist covered Al Green's "I'm a Ram."
Musical partnerships offer brands a unique opportunity to express their values and further communicate to consumers. But while the boons of musical branding are plentiful, so are the risks if the creative is done poorly or viewed as inauthentic by consumers. There is also the danger of choosing a problematic artist; Jeep briefly experienced this trouble earlier this year when it scrapped its Super Bowl spot featuring Bruce Springsteen after news came out that he'd been charged with a DWI. The charges were later dropped and Jeep reuploaded the ad.
"Spotlight" also sees Ram looking ahead to a post-pandemic future in which masks are absent, classrooms are full, and rock stars play to sold-out stadiums — all of which are scenes or clips featured in the first two videos of the series. The campaign is part a of a larger initiative, #RamBandVan, which is currently dedicated toward getting artists back on stage and on the road, according to the press release. In this respect, Ram joins a host of brands in preparing for a return to normalcy, including Bud Light, Dos Equis and Mtn Dew.