Missing: a 2-year old Tiger who loves raw meat. A 130-pound leopard who likes to pounce on strangers. An eagle with an 8-foot wingspan.
Those missing pets signs should grab some attention. That’s precisely the point of a guerrilla marketing campaign that Jeep is running in markets outside North America to bring more attention to the brand, and attract new customers.
The signs will be posted on the streets in countries around the world, directing people to a micro Web site, where they’ll see the surveillance video below, showing the wild animals on the loose and surprising people.
Before viewers are too alarmed, they’re taken to the Jeep brand Web site to see the newest member in the Jeep lineup, which promises to “bring more wild into your life.” There, they’ll find an interactive guide to extreme living, and they’ll see all the features available in the Jeep Cherokee (which is sold as the Jeep Liberty in North America and a few other markets.)
On the Web site, people can download ringtones for their cell phones of wild animal sounds, or beautiful screen savers for their computer. (Click on “listen to the podcast” below to hear the ringtones)
The “Jeep Extreme” marketing campaign is elaborate, but also memorable, and it will grab attention for the Jeep brand in markets where it isn’t seen as common on the roads as it is in North America.
“It’s just a really inexpensive way for the markets to get the message out,” said Judy Wheeler, Director of International Marketing – Chrysler LLC. “The lost pet signs are very similar to what you would see in supermarkets, subways, and universities. Except this is for an extreme pet. They’re definitely going to notice it, just because it’s not your average, everyday pet.”
Jeep vehicles are priced higher overseas than in North America, and compete against luxury brands such as BMW, Wheeler said.
So the buyer of a Jeep is someone who is individualistic and wants to stand out from the crowd, she said. “It is definitely a much more upscale customer that we’re going after and targeting. They could make the choices of any of the more luxury brands within Europe. But they’re choosing to buy a Jeep because they’re opinionated, they’re strong in their sense. They’re living the adventure.”
That adventurous attitude is reflected in the new Jeep Cherokee marketing campaign. Print ads showing the Jeep Cherokee and the exotic, wild pets have a fashion magazine look that says the vehicle is adventurous but also luxurious and refined.
The lost pet posters are especially important in markets where television ads are too costly. In other countries, such as Italy, France, Germany and the United Kingdom, the television spot below will run, showing the Jeep Cherokee has upgraded style and refinement without losing its rugged soul.
The new marketing campaign for the Jeep Cherokee is a real departure for the brand. In the past, Jeep would create a campaign for U.S. consumers, and other countries may or may not pick up the television and print ads. Often, they would create their own ads to suit the tastes of buyers in their own markets.
“One size doesn’t fit all, usually,” she said.
But by working with marketing managers in countries around the world, Wheeler and her team were able to come up with a marketing campaign for the Jeep Cherokee that could be unified, resulting in more efficiency and a unified message to consumers.
“In the end, they’re all using one TV ad, they’re all using one template for a Web site, they’re using one targeted direct mail piece. That’s a big difference from where we’ve been in the past,” she said.
So be on the lookout for lost tigers, eagles and leopards near you.