Carfax Gives Ads a Humorous Tune-Up

“Show me the Carfax!” is the Jerry Maguire-inspired rallying cry in Zimmerman’s upcoming campaign for the service that provides used-vehicle history reports to help consumers make smart buying choices.
The work breaks April 16 with a trio of TV spots in tune with the tenor of the times. In all of the commercials, customers insist, “Show me the Carfax!” before purchasing vehicles.
In “Promises, Promises,” a buyer proves to be as tenacious as the salesman as they verbally joust in the front seat; in “Fox,” a young couple is not amused when a dealer uses a “car fox” hand puppet to close a sale; the sound-alike joke is extended in “What,” with a customer brushing aside offers of car maps and car flaps in lieu of the Carfax report.
Scott Fredericks, vp, marketing at the client, praised the simplicity of the approach that speaks in a humorous yet relevant way to both consumers and dealers (the latter, after all, would make out better in the spots by acquiescing to the “Show me!” requests.)
Added agency creative partner Zev Auerbach: “This campaign highlights the benefits for the two essential groups.”
The marketer spent slightly more than $20 million last year in major U.S. measured media (not including online), per Nielsen.