Cutbacks Won’t Stall Ad Barrage From BBDO for ’98 Dodge Intrepid

The advertising launch of Chrysler Corp.’s ’98 Dodge Intrepid later this month won’t be affected by the automaker’s decision to cut up to $100 million from its annual media budget in 1998, the company said.
The revised advertising budget will mean lower spending on Chrysler’s “Great cars. Great trucks” corporate campaign from Bozell Worldwide in Southfield, Mich., and on work for
several older car models, a representative said. But the redesigned Intrepid–and its supporting campaign from BBDO’s Southfield office–won’t be shortchanged, Dodge officials said.
“The Intrepid is a very important car for our brand and our company,” said Dave Rooney, Dodge marketing communications manager. “It’s a terrific opportunity in the first quarter [of 1998] to not only launch Intrepid, but to stimulate the car side of our business. We believe that if we can change the way people think about us through this campaign, we can sell [Dodge] Stratuses from it and we can sell Neons from it. It’s important, and we’re going to treat
it that way.”
Chrysler spent almost $37 million on the Dodge Intrepid during the ’97 model year. While Dodge officials declined to say how much of a spending boost the vehicle will receive through the new campaign, they did outline an extensive broadcast media buy that includes 14 college football bowl games and the upcoming Winter Olympics. A four-page foldout insert is planned for the Jan. 5 issue of USA Today. An eight-page print insert breaks in February issues of auto enthusiast and consumer lifestyle titles, while newsweeklies will feature a selection of two-page spreads.
BBDO’s four 30-second TV spots “speak to the integrity of the product,” said Ray Fisher, Dodge division general manager. Dodge’s tagline continues, with an addendum: “We’re changing everything. Again.” Actor Edward Hermann, Dodge’s longtime spokesman, provides voiceovers for the spots.