Creative in association withGear Seven

'The Great Unknowns' Are Revealed in Kia Motors’ Super Bowl Ad

Advertising Agency
Los Angeles, USA
David & Goliath honours the proud workers of Kia's West Point, Georgia plant in spot directed by Serial Pictures’ John Hillcoat

“We are not famous,” a young boy states in the opening frame of Kia Motors’ 2019 Super Bowl commercial. “There are no stars in a sidewalk for us. No statues in our honour. We’re just a small Georgia town of complete unknowns.”

For Kia’s 10th consecutive appearance in the Big Game, the auto brand known for its challenger spirit took an unconventional approach. This year, Kia didn’t use a celebrity for its Super Bowl spot. This year, Kia began a movement to honour The Great Unknowns: The hard-working people of America. Starting with the proud workers of Kia’s West Point, Georgia plant who build the new 2020 Telluride SUV.

The Big Game Ad: 'Give It Everything'

In the touching 90-second spot – created by David&Goliath and directed by acclaimed Serial Pictures’ director John Hillcoat – West Point is depicted in a series of shots showing its rural, small-town feel. “Because we are not known for who we are,” the boy continues, “we hope to be known for what we do. What we build.”

The viewer then sees the first glimpse of what it is they build: Kia’s new flagship model, the Telluride SUV. The voiceover continues, “No, we are not famous. But we are incredible. And we make incredible things.” 

The spot, which aired during the third quarter, ends with the super: “Here’s to the Great Unknowns. Give It Everything.”

New Brand Positioning: Give It Everything

The campaign not only launches Kia’s new SUV, but it also introduces an evolution of the brand’s positioning and expression that brings its challenger brand truth to the forefront: 'Give It Everything'. This new positioning highlights Kia’s unstoppable spirit to try harder, work smarter, build better and sweat every detail. 'Give It Everything' will launch with the Telluride campaign and be part of all Kia campaigns moving forward.

“Rather than just launch a Super Bowl spot, we wanted to create a movement. One that recognises the challenger spirit in all of us,” said David Angelo, founder and chairman of D&G. “‘Give It Everything’ is Kia’s authentic truth that comes from its history of being a challenger. The hard-working people of West Point fully embody this spirit. So we thought, what better way to honour these great unknowns than to give them the spotlight on America’s biggest television event of the year. Starting now, “Give It Everything” is Kia’s new company ethos and will fuel everything it does. From inside its four walls, to the dealership experience, to supporting education for America’s youth. Because when you give it everything, there are no limits to what you can achieve.”

In the spirit of Give It Everything, the campaign also unveils 'Just a Small Georgia Town', a new short form documentary that uncovers the story of West Point, GA. A small town that rose from the ashes of a collapsed textile industry, relying on only its courage to see it through to the other side, before finally finding new life when Kia opened its new plant there nearly 10 years ago.

The Great Unknowns Scholarship

But it doesn’t stop there. The money that is saved by not paying a celebrity will be used to create The Great Unknowns Scholarship, to assist eligible students who plan to continue their education in college or vocational school programs. The goal is to discover and reward young Americans who embody the spirit of 'Give It Everything', and help them pursue their academic dreams.

Angelo added: “The Great Unknowns Scholarship is just one piece of the overall movement that comes to life on multiple platforms. It’s not about one thing, but rather a drum roll for the brand ready to solidify its truth on the world stage.”

Other elements of the integrated campaign include print, digital, social and outdoor. Post-Super Bowl, a sustain phase will follow with 60- and 30-second cut-downs of 'Give It Everything' along with spots highlighting the product features of the Telluride, including a Presidents’ Day spot. The digital rollout includes static and HTML5 banners across Lifestyle and Shopping websites and four feature-focused videos that will run in pre-roll.

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