And the worst automotive advertising of the 2017 season is…

And the worst automotive advertising of the season is…GM.

Why am i not surprised? The big American brands have had mediocre advertising strategies for years, and they throw money at wide mass markets instead of using smart targeted marketing to find their true audience.

But this one reaches a new pinnacle of mediocrity and amateurism. GMC Acadia for 2017.

GM presents us this drivel that actually makes me embarrassed for the professional conductor who is featured in the ad. Who, by the way, is Maestro Kazem Abdullah. A native of Indiana, Abdullah, 36, has served as the Generalmusikdirektor of the city of Aachen, Germany since 2012, and has led orchestras the world over. A real talent.

But unlike the conductor who is an expert in his field, the supposed-professionals who developed and approved this ad seem to have no real experiential knowledge of the vehicle, so they start making shit up. It could have been the answer to an assignment given to a freshman art school class: how would you advertise this truck if you had NO experience with it before? How could you make it stand out from the crowd of 2017 automotive ads that are starting to appear?

The agency should be embarrassed by this effort but they are probably not. But the CLIENT — well, whoever approved this or possibly pushed for it on the client side should go back to operations or financial or wherever the hell they came from because they have no business leading and approving marketing and advertising expenditures.

By the way, I’ve seen a tagline for GM where they describe their greatness as
The New Standard of the World.  HOLY CRAP! THE WHOLE FRIKKIN’ WORLD!???

Wow, that would be impressive if they were, but of course they are nowhere close to that. I know from my own past automotive experience that they don’t even manufacture their own engines. So I’m not impressed.

The thing that makes me feel like weeping is that I know wht kinds of budgets these things take, and there could not be more of a waste of money in the world of advertising than when this kind of thing rears its ugly head. At a time when American auto manufacturers should be grateful to be alive and determined to produce and advertise better than anyone out there.

I feel nothing but pity for the people who worked on this who know better. I am wondering if it was Leo Burnett. Not sure. If anyone knew this was a terrible direction to go,  they didn’t really have the guts to stand up for producing great work for their clients.

All involved should be ashamed.

NEXT up: The BEST automotive advertising of the 2017 season.




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Filed under Creative Share: my weekly critique, Creative Strategy, Marketing Strategy

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