The new ads for Skoda have reached number 14 in Adwatch, with 49%
recall - and that’s no laughing matter. The pounds 4m campaign from
Fallon McElligott, which takes in press, poster and TV ads, supports the
launch of its Fabia model, and addresses consumer misconceptions about
the much-maligned brand.
In the first of three TV ads, a visitor is shown around a large,
state-of-the-art car factory. His attention is drawn to the 240 robots,
the ten-year anti-corrosion warrantee, and the engine that meets
European emission standards. Suitably impressed by the finished model,
the visitor says: ’I hear you make those funny little Skoda cars here as
In the second ad, an organiser at a motor show reproaches workers for
putting the illustrious Fabia on the Skoda stand, not believing it could
be a Skoda. The final ad shows a car park attendant apologising to a man
because vandals have stuck a Skoda badge on the front of his lovely
The ads carry the strapline, ’It’s a Skoda. Honest’.
Chris Hirst, account director at Fallon McElligott, says: ’Our objective
was to remove the stigma attached to the Skoda brand. People know the
cars aren’t rubbish, so we just have to build more positive brand
values, such as honesty, directness, and quality.’
Hirst says the campaign’s humorous approach helps make the brand more
likeable. ’If we had ignored consumer perceptions, and done normal car
ads, people wouldn’t have swallowed it. This way, people are laughing
with us, rather than at us.’
The Fabia’s core market is women aged between 25 and 40, but Hirst says
Skoda is targeting the majority of the UK population in trying to sway
Hirst refutes suggestions that this campaign will alienate the
traditional, older Skoda buyer, saying: ’Skoda customers are extremely
loyal and recognise good value. This is not an alienating campaign, and
doesn’t focus on any particular lifestyle.’
UK sales of all Skoda models are up 30% on the year to date compared
with the same period last year.
To see one of the ads visit www.marketing.haynet.com.