Chevrolet Saddles Up Suburban

CEA Campaign Targets Texans With Visions of Lone-Star History
DETROIT-Chevrolet’s redesigned Suburban sport utility vehicle is getting an ad campaign specially tailored for Texas, the vehicle’s most popular market.
In a typical year, Texans buy about one-quarter of all Suburbans sold nationally, said Steve Ramsey, the vehicle’s brand manager. So, with the relaunch, the automaker decided to develop special creative for the market.
A 30-second spot, “Texas Tradition,” breaks Dec. 13 during regional broadcasts of Christmas programs and continues through the month. Specially designed print ads will appear in Texas Monthly, the Texas edition of Southern Living and regional editions of USA Today and newsweeklies. The campaign is from Campbell-Ewald Advertising, Warren, Mich., national agency for the General Motors division.
A national campaign from CEA, with its own TV spot and print ads, will break after the first of the year.
The Texas spot is positioned as “a tribute to Texans, because they made Suburbans a legend,” Ramsey said. It shows the vehicle present at some of the state’s most historic moments-witnessing the 1940s-era Wichita Falls High School state champion football team; the oil boom in East Texas; and a Buddy Holly concert at the Cactus Theater, a historical landmark in Laredo.
The creative team went to great lengths to give each time period an authentic feel, shooting the separate vignettes with vintage cameras and film, said Joe Puhy, CEA executive vice president and creative director on Chevy trucks.
Creatives wanted to get away from stereotypical images such as cowboys on horseback, and instead focus on events and activities that are truly important to Texans, Puhy said. The spot’s final scene is at the locally famous chili cook-off in Terlinqua, where people are shown circling the 2000 Suburban and collectively tipping their hats to it.
Chevy spent $18.5 million on Suburban advertising in 1998, and $16 million through the first eight months of 1999, according to Competitive Media Reporting. K