Chrysler Bites Back At Ad Age Over Ask Dr. Z Campaign
Chrysler is mad as hell at Advertising Age and isn't going to take it any longer. Reacting to a story by Jean Halliday on Chrysler's Ask Dr. Z campaign in which she pretty much trashes the campaign saying it didn't do much for the automaker, Jason Vines wrote an article on the company's The Firehouse press blog entitled "Truth Takes A Halliday." In the article, Jason lays out data which contradicts Halliday's article and claims the campaign is doing just fine. Since, in the inimitable wisdom of Vines who publicly promoted the blog when it launched but limited it only to "known and established media organizations," we can't link to the story so we'll just reprint it in its entirety here until Jason asks us to remove it. You'd think he'd want more than just press to see this good stuff. And Jason, we're not anonymous. Just click the About link above.
Truth Takes a Halliday
Posted Aug 3, 2006, 12:00 PM by Jason Vines
Category: The Fire Hose
Advertising Age writer Jean Halliday must have a wonderful imagination, since she must have dreamed up most of the content in her "news-slash-opinion" story on the Ask Dr. Z advertising campaign Halliday decided her manufactured story earlier this week just wasn't enough, so she decided to do an on-line piece as a follow-up to what is looking more and more like a personal jihad against our campaign.
Halliday spins all sorts of fairytales, writing the campaign "did little to lure prospective buyers," that consumers missed the Employee Pricing Plus message and were "unmoved by the German-engineering positioning or the DaimlerChrysler chairman, whom they overwhelmingly believed was a fictional character."
Facts should be the basis for a reporter's story, but Halliday didn't bother to seek them, so we'll do her job for her.
Here they are:
An independent study performed by IAG Research found the Dr. Z campaign "significantly outperformed" almost every one of what the leading advertising research organization calls its "norms."
Dr. Z Campaign IAG Auto Norm
General Recall 50% 43%
Brand Recall 29% 22%
Message Recall 24% 16%
LIkeability 16% 12%
Brand Linkage 59% 52%
Message Linkage 81% 69%
Likeability Linkage 54% 53%
If that's not enough, here's some more--results from our own corporate research. We spoke with 254 buyers by phone between July 25 and July 30 to help understand reaction to Employee Pricing Plus.
Our key findings:
*83 percent said they were "aware" of the program
*38 percent said their awareness was driven by television...the highest score for any medium.
*45 percent said awareness of Employee Pricing Plus had a strong influence on their decision to shop for a new vehicle and 55 percent said the offer had a significant influence on their decision to buy a new vehicle.
*The percentage of those trading in another make vehicle for a Chrysler, Dodge or Jeep┬« increased from the first quarter of this year.
GM: 17 percent vs 13 percent in Q1
Ford: 15 percent vs 10 percent in Q1
Imports: 14 percent vs. 10 percent in Q1 Traffic to our brand websites is up 15.1 percent since the commercials began running and sales leads from the Internet are up 27.1 percent.
Yes, sales were down in July, but that's compared to a record month last year when all three domestic automakers ran employee pricing programs. But, as we stated on the media and analyst sales call on August 1, more importantly, our retail sales were up 9 percent over June--the month the campaign wasn't running.
One other point of clarification: Ms Halliday stated that our campaign would cost around $225 million. The truth is it is around $100 million and that figure includes DAA or dealer advertising association money. That truthful, non-manufactured number wasn't hard to find. George Murphy, our Senior Vice President of Marketing, stated it at the June 30th press briefing in Auburn Hills.
Jean, two questions: where do you come up with this stuff, and weren't you at that press briefing? There you go, Jean. Those are facts. They're not hard to recognize. All you have to do is look for them. Doh!