Chevy: "Technology and Stuff"
Everyone's seen or heard it by now. On Facebook, TV, the radio, Twitter... After the Giants beat the Royals to win the World Series last night, San Francisco pitcher Madison Bumgarner was announced as the Series MVP. As part of this recognition he was awarded a new 2015 Chevrolet Colorado pickup truck. Chevrolet Regional Zone Manager Rikk Wilde was on hand to present the keys to Bumgarner and, well, it's best to just watch if you haven't seen it yet.
An embarrassing moment for Wilde, who was clearly very, very nervous. But why wouldn't he be? He's on national television and has probably never been exposed like this ever before in his life. He tried - he had note cards after all, but his nerves still got the best of him.
I've seen and heard a lot of jokes about Wilde this morning, and for the most part, it's all been in good fun. "Technology and stuff" is probably not the way Chevy wanted its Colorado positioned to a live national audience. To those people taking it a step further and making fun of Wilde's physical appearance, and I've unfortunately seen and heard a lot of them - get a life. Do we really need to go there? Though his delivery was somewhat funny, I mostly felt bad for the guy. Remember his title - Regional Zone Manager. This wasn't a CEO, COO or CMO. It wasn't even a head of sales. Regional Zone Manager. He's not used to doing things like this. That's not his fault, it's Chevy's fault. A lot of media are referring to Wilde as a Chevy "executive." I don't know Chevy's organizational structure, but I think that's a liberal use of the word executive.
But let's get back to marketing now.
Could Chevy turn this into a positive? @ChevyTrucks has already tweeted using the hashtag #TechnologyandStuff:
— Chevy Trucks (@ChevyTrucks) October 30, 2014
But could they turn this into a larger campaign beyond a hashtag?
It can't get much worse than one of their recent campaigns. Earlier this year I recall seeing a number of ads focusing on people who were having financial struggles - bankrupty, couldn't pay their mortgage, etc. Yet all of these people talked about still being able to purchase a Chevy. "But I got a Chevy" was the statement given with a smile. Chevy was never a luxury brand, but these ads effectively turned it into the polar opposite. In fact, I know a number of people who actually developed a negative association with the brand because of the ads.
Chevy may have rebounded some with its recent round of ads, including a campaign featuring 13 year old Little Leaguer Mo'ne Davis. That ad series tugs on emotion. It's more about the Chevy brand, than Chevy products.
"Technology and Stuff" gives Chevy an opportunity to focus more on its products in a humorous way. They've basically been given a red carpet to now explain what all that technology and stuff is.
They could even include Rikk Wilde - and should. Everyone knows who he is now. With apologies to the Giants and their fans, Wilde is the national talk of the internet today. While people will remember San Francisco winning its third World Series title in five years, they will also now remember Wilde. Capitalize on it. He's become a face of your brand. Embrace that.
There are a lot of different approaches a "Technology and Stuff" campaign could take, and a lot of different content forms that could be used. I hope they choose to use this moment.