It is a new world out there in the automotive advertising game. How else would you explain the latest advertising campaign from Kia Motors America?
For those of you not in the loop, Kia tapped its ad agency David & Goliath back in 2009 to create an ad supporting the launch of the 2010 Kia Soul. D&G came up with an ad depicting urban and suburban streets inhabited by hamsters mindlessly running in place inside their exercise wheels until confronted with the new Soul (also driven by hamsters dressed in urban garb and listening to “Do what you Do” by Marz.
That first commercial garnered a Silver EFFIE award in the “David v. Goliath” category which is awarded to small, new or emerging brands that challenge category leaders head-on. It was soon followed-up by a second commercial, this one depicting the now-famous hamsters in an urban setting behind the wheel of an “Alien” green 2011 Kia Soul as they cruise past other hamsters driving toasters, washing machines and cardboard boxes – all the while rapping the title song’s lyrics, “You can get with this, or you can get with that" by the group Black Sheep.
That second commercial took home a Gold Effie award, again in the “David v. Goliath” category and was named “Automotive Ad of the Year” by the Nielsen Company. It also prompted Kia to market a line of clothing based on the commercials with items such as hoodies, tees, caps and Rasta track jackets emblazoned with the brand’s logo and “Hamstar” script.
Soul Shuffle Slam
Chapter three of the saga began late last month when Kia launched its third D&G hamster commercial that made its debut during MTV’s Video Music Awards.
Entitled “Share Some Soul”, it takes place in a futuristic videogame world in which the hamsters, again riding in a Soul, interrupt a fierce battle between alien robots and humanoids into what Kia terms an “interstellar dance party” to the tune of LMFAO’s “Party Rock Anthem.”
According to Michael Sprague, vice president, marketing & communications, KMA, “it makes perfect sense to extend our partnership with LMFAO by inviting dancers from all over the globe to show us their best shuffle for the opportunity to win some $10,000 and the dance opportunity of a lifetime.”
To that end, Kia is inviting dancers (we’ll call this a loose interpretation) from around the globe to participate in a video submission contest hosted on the Kia Soul YouTube and Facebook channels where contestants will vie for the aforementioned Grand Prize.
To make things interesting, visitors to both the YouTube and Facebook channels will be able to vote for their favorites. The four finalists will be selected to move on to the Kia Soul Shuffle Slam Showdown where their videos will be judged by LMFAO’s Redfoo and SkyBlue along with members of the dance team Quest Crew.