Navistar Raises Its Voice

Navistar International Corp. attempts to establish itself as the leader among heavy truck manufacturers with an estimated $6 million corporate branding campaign breaking today.
The advertising, created by Ogilvy & Mather here, includes full page ads in The Wall Street Journal and USA Today, four-page ads in Business Week and Fortune magazine and a 30-second TV spot planned to break today on ABC’s Monday Night Football.
The campaign spotlights the brand’s International Eagle model 9900 truck, depicting its International brand as a “workhorse that’s always in motion,” according to a company representative. The campaign is tagged, “Delivering. Beyond the expected.”
The effort is Chicago-based Navistar’s first national campaign in 12 years. The International brand is well-known among truck buyers, and company officials felt it was time to take advantage of that name recognition, the representative said.
“International stands for reliability, durability and good value in our customers’ minds,” said Navistar president, chairman and CEO John Horne in a statement. “This new campaign drives home the point that even as our customers needs change, we are out in front.”
While the media buy includes mainstream publications and programming, the campaign targets heavy truck buyers and drivers, since research showed they were serious readers of business-oriented publications and viewers of professional sporting events.
Navistar, which had 1997 sales of $6.4 billion, previously has maintained a low corporate profile while building what it claims is a 28 percent share of the North American heavy truck market. The company spent only $187,000 on advertising last year, according to Competitive Media Reporting.