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Tech candy, magazine spreads and a particularly shapely racetrack were all part of the media mix of Team One’s launch of the totally revamped 2013 Lexus GS sedan.
Tent poles included Lexus’ first Super Bowl spot, from San Francisco shop Attik, and a spread in the iconic Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Issue featuring a racetrack hugging the curves of model Tori Praver. As part of the Lexus program, readers also could download a branded game via the iPhone.
In another element, consumers could place an NFC- enabled phone over an ad in Wired to see how the GS sedan’s new dashboard works.
Branded content took the form of a Speed Channel show, Shut Up and Drive, and additional video fans of NBCU programs like E!’s The Soup could access via a mobile app.
The plan further encompassed partnerships with media such as The Wall Street Journal, Motor Trend, MSN and YouTube and events including NCAA March Madness.
Each element sought to reach the GS’ core target of fortysomething men who’ve embraced technology.
The promotion paid huge dividends. Within a month of the car’s Feb. 9 launch, its share of sales in the luxury sedan segment jumped to 17 percent from 2 percent, according to Team One executive media director Paul Silverman. Within two months, Lexus’ Facebook likes soared 39 percent to more than 1.2 million.
The GS is on pace to sell 24,000 units this year, four times the norm, in what Lexus’ national marketing manager Brian Bolain calls “reestablishing relevance.” —Andrew McMains
Illustration: Carlos Monteiro
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