Napa Auto Parts Sings a New Tune

Taking a page from Subway and, which feature catchy original music in their ads, auto parts brand Napa is rolling out a tuneful new campaign.

The ads, the first from new agency Kaplan Thaler Group, feature Martin Truex Jr. of Nascar and Ron Capps of NHRA lip syncing a rocking country song that features the chorus, “Napa Know How,” which happens to also be the tagline.

The song was written and performed by Wendell Mobley, a Nashville tunesmith who has written hits for Rascal Flatts and Kenny Chesney, among others. The lyrics explain that although the singer doesn’t know anything about rocket science or going to the moon, when it comes to getting a car in gear, he relies on Napa know-how.

Linda Kaplan Thaler, CEO and chief creative officer of Kaplan Thaler, said the goal was to distinguish Napa’s in-house experts from competitors. “We wanted to talk to the fact that it’s not just the quality of the parts. It’s advising what to use, and these folks [at Napa stores] are walking encyclopedias.”

That expertise will also be available for the first time via social media. A Facebook page and a Twitter presence will let consumers get answers to their car-related questions.

The push, which began last weekend, coincided with TV coverage of the Daytona 500 and the National Hot Road Association’s Winternationals in Pomona, Calif. Napa will have presence at both those events, and signage will sport the new “Napa Know How” tagline.

Kaplan Thaler and  Publicis sister shop Spark Communications won the esti-  mated $20 million Napa account in Dec-ember. Fahlgren, Columbus, Ohio, had previously handled Napa’s advertising.

Previous ads from Fahlgren also took a humorous approach. A 2007 campaign featuring Nascar drivers Dale Jarrett and Michael Waltrip showed how Napa was able to provide solid answers and hard-to-find auto parts, with genies and bloodhounds, respectively.