The colourful live-action films were created by Duncan Channon and directed by MJZ’s Perlorian Brothers
A new brand positioning and creative campaign launching March 5 by Duncan Channon for auto retailer DriveTime has fun with the idea that buying a car can make even the smartest among us feel dumb.
Two national TV spots in DriveTime’s new $50M+ campaign playfully showcase two fictional brainiacs: marine biologist Dakota Isaacs and mathematician Gunter Zoolof who claim remarkable academic and scientific achievements, yet fail to be true geniuses because they don’t outsmart the notoriously unpleasant car buying process using DriveTime.
The spots were created by Duncan Channon with visual effects partner Freefolk and director Perlorian Brothers.
The “Almost a Genius” campaign is part of a larger strategic pivot for DriveTime, the USA’s second largest used vehicle retailer focused exclusively on used vehicle sales, to introduce the brand to new customer segments with near prime and prime credit. The pivot - which includes changes in DriveTime’s online and retail experiences, pricing and inventory - now puts the brand in direct competition with the auto retailing heavyweights. Prior to this rebrand to aggressively court audiences with good credit, DriveTime focused on “rescuing” car-seeking consumers with Fico scores under 550 who typically hear “no” from traditional lenders.
Duncan Channon, DriveTime’s agency of record since 2012 and creator of the successful ‘Rescued’ campaign that drove five years of double digit sales growth, collaborated with the brand on its repositioning and conceived ‘The Genius Way to Buy a Car’ tag.
The campaign will launch March 5 on national cable networks including A&E, ESPN, History, Discovery and USA among others, and on local broadcast stations in 68 markets - as well as digitally on Facebook and YouTube. Beyond new advertising, DriveTime is aggressively courting audiences with good credit via competitive pricing based on the Kelly Blue Book Price Advisor and low APRs and down payments for those with Fico scores above 550. DriveTime has also added 6,000+ late model, low mileage used vehicles with strong market demand to its national inventory.
“Why is it that we’ve all somehow agreed that buying a car will be a complete drag? No matter how much we demand smarter, more convenient ways of purchasing other items in our lives, we reluctantly go through the old-school drudgery at the dealership when it comes to one of the biggest purchases we make,” said Anne Elisco-Lemme, executive creative director, Duncan Channon. “But the smart people at DriveTime have developed an incredible set of online tools that give their equally smart consumers everything they need to make an intelligent and pain-free purchase – lightening fast. It might not be Carmichael's totient function conjecture, but it’s pretty genius.”
“Our strategic pivot is grounded in listening to what we know car buyers want -- to make the car buying process easy by setting a transparent expectation about the price of car and down payment online and then over-delivering on that promise at one of our 145 dealerships,” said Scott Worthington, vice president, retail and marketing, DriveTime. “We’re excited to introduce DriveTime to all consumers who are looking for a smarter, easier way to buy a used car with Duncan Channon’s humorous creative approach.”