GM Tones Down Macho in New Ads for Hummer

The debut campaign for General Motors’ Hummer by Modernista! is print work tagged, “Hummer. Like nothing else,” and is intended as a bridge to the introduction of a lower-priced model next year.

Hummer’s $100,000-plus H1 has not been advertised in the past year, but GM wanted to raise brand awareness before the launch of the less expensive H2 model next July, said Marc Hernandez, Hummer brand manager.

All four ads have different headlines but the same copy: “Sometimes you find yourself in the middle of nowhere. And sometimes in the middle of nowhere you find yourself. The legendary H1.”

Headlines include, “How did my soul get way out here?,” “What good is the world at your fingertips if you never actually touch it?,” “You can get fresh air lots of places, but this is the really good stuff,” and “Out here you’re nobody. Perfect.”

The Boston shop’s ads break Aug. 14 in a variety of publications, including The Wall Street Journal, Barron’s, Spin and Esquire, and will run through year’s end.

Past work was tagged, “The world’s most serious 4 x 4,” and focused on the vehicle’s off-road capabilities and military attitude. The new ads attempt a more refined take, said Liz Vanzura, Hummer advertising director.

Lance Jensen, co-founder of Modernista! and its creative director, said the ads attempt to be more believable through the use of journalistic-type photography, playing down he-man imagery.

“Authenticity is probably the most important word when it comes to branding,” Jensen said.

Spending was not disclosed, but Hummer’s budget was pegged at $20 million when Modernista! won the business last October in a review that included two GM roster shops, incumbent Pyro Brand Development in Dallas, McCann-Erickson in Troy, Mich., along with The Martin Agency in Richmond, Va.