What’s Funny About Truck Leasing? A Lot, Penske Hopes to Show in Its New Campaign

Using humor for B2B business

Penske Truck Leasing is looking to bring a little levity to the business-to-business world with a new, digitally focused ad campaign from The Martin Agency.

The spots feature various scenarios in which Penske can help consumers or business owners out of a jam—a coffee shop trying to keep angry customers at bay because its coffee delivery never showed up, for example. The goal is to catch the attention of B2B decision makers.

"The reason we went to humor here—and these kind of hyperbolic demonstrations of the essence of Penske—is because in the B2B world, people take themselves so seriously," said Cliff Sorah, senior vp and group creative director for The Martin Agency. "They tend to have no sense of humor; it's all business. The fact of the matter is that when people consume these ads they are consuming them as consumers, and we have to get their attention." 

It's Penske's first national ad campaign, and the brand is hoping to make an impression. The 30-second spots will debut next week on Bloomberg.com. 

"People tended to know us for just the consumer part of what we do," said Sherry Sanger, senior vp of marketing for Penske. "But the B2B part of our business is the larger part of the business, and we felt like there was this opportunity to tell a larger story." 

Penske's B2B business consists of supply-chain and logistics customers, generally senior executives from large manufacturers, distributors, retailers, grocers and chain stores that rely on Penske's trucking and warehousing services. (The business-to-consumer part of Penske's operations involves renting moving trucks.)

Sanger said B2B accounts for more than 90 percent of Penske's business. The company has roughly 24,000 employees worldwide and a truck fleet of about 216,000. 

Check out the new spots below: