This is the first time in South Africa that the digital Genesis camera, a joint invention by Sony and Panavision, has been used in the country. Genesis is the first film-style fully portable digital imaging camera that utilises all existing spherical 35mm lenses and was chosen by Frieze Films director, Tony Baggott, for flexibility and to ensure high production values. It was also perfect for night shooting as it reduced the time to light the set and the quantity of light required.
The commercial, which broke on August 18, is a little like a Hollywood action movie itself. It features two young men – the passenger and driver of the new Auris – who are so enamoured with the Auris' good looks and myriad features that they fail to react as a rather bizarre sequence of events – think ambulances, run-away gurneys, collapsing electricity pylons – unfolds right before their eyes. This highlights the Auris' positioning ‘Only the exceptional gets noticed'.
Written by Adam Wittert and art directed by Ivor Forrester, the commercial was shot over three nights in Loveday Street in Johannesburg. It launches the Auris into hatch market as a new nameplate to replace the ever-popular market leader in the C-segment, RunX, and meets Toyota's requirement for a strong focus on the car and its technology, as well as its need to appeal to the Now Generation/Café Society market.
Explained FCB Johannesburg's Group Account Director, Michael Di Terlizzi: “The target audience are hardworking, stylish, and lead a self-indulgent lifestyle. This means image is very important, and they never want to be seen as boring, calculated or as a careful middle-of-the-road person.
“This resulted in the agency's ‘Only the exceptional gets noticed' positioning for the Auris, and also in a rather unique pre-launch campaign that set the scene for the major television burst and print traditional advertising,” he said.
This ‘unique' campaign that Di Terlizzi referred to was a virtual world – AurisCity – created specifically for the Auris, and launched a month before the traditional advertising broke.
Not only is the virtual world of AurisCity made up of chic spots like the Showroom (where users can view features, specs and models of the Auris) and the Art Gallery (an ode to style where visitors hang out with the hip crowd), it is home to two characters that create a ‘physical' representation of the brand.
These characters, who have their own MySpace and Facebook pages, have introduced audiences to a totally interactive face that fronts the brand. They are known as Auriska La Dash and Aursito Di Lusso on Facebook or at www.myspace.com/auriska
Other pre-launch activities included outdoor, street pole advertising and radio promotions to drive people to the AurisCity web site; mobizines; an Auris blog; and series of online banners and buttons that drove the target market to register and play on www.auriscity.co.za
In addition to the television campaign, FCB Johannesburg is using other traditional advertising channels for the launch – radio, print, outdoor, web, brochures and pamphlets, and point-of-sale.
According to Kabelo Moshapalo, creative director at FCB Johannesburg, the pre-launch initiative worked exceptionally well, and it is expected that the traditional advertising will strike as favourable a cord with the target audience.
“The target audience is actually making friends with these brand characters, and this is incredibly exhilarating for the creative team.
“It's not often when you get your target audience interacting in a very informal and honest way with your brand or campaign and getting on-the-spot responses to what they think and feel. We have found this exercise incredibly informative and we are delighted by its success. Toyota is committed to creating a memorable online presence and the response in overwhelmingly positive. It's something you have to see, check it out at www.auriscity.co.za
,” he said.