More Kia Hamsters – Car Pro News

Get ready to see more hamsters riding around in the Kia Soul.
The automaker is launching the fourth iteration of its popular rodent-centric marketing campaign, which includes TV spots starring animated hamsters — often wearing hip-hop gear — driving the hatchback.
Kia started marketing the car for its launch in 2009, and Michael Sprague, Kia’s exec VP-marketing and communications, said at Ad Age’s Small Agency Conference that the company’s sales are up 78 percent since 2008, thanks in part to the success of the campaign.
The Soul is built in Korea and is Kia’s second-best selling model in the United States in the first half of this year.
Sprague, who called Kia a brand with a challenger mind-set, said the Soul has been so successful because of how the company, thanks in part to its agencies, approached the campaign and how it appealed to its target demographic: Gen Y, or millennials.
To appeal to millennials, the company structured the campaign around four pillars of their lifestyles: music, sports, pop culture, and what Sprague called “connected life,” which includes a connection to technology and close ties to friends and family.
Sprague added that Kia wanted to turn the hamsters into icons, and to do that it had to connect the giant rodents to “music, fashion and pop culture.” As for music, the marketer worked with hip-hop duo Black Sheep, whose song “This or That” was featured in a spot.
Despite the success of the hamsters, they almost didn’t make the cut. Sprague said that other concepts were being considered for the campaign, including boars that sported backpacks.
Kia didn’t want to become “known as the hamster brand,” even though it eventually did, said Sprague. To branch out beyond the hamsters, Kia came up with promotions such as partnering with NBA star Blake Griffin for the Kia Optima, in which Griffin dunked over an Optima in the slam-dunk contest during the NBA’s All-Star weekend in 2011.

1 Comment
  1. Robyn 5 years ago

    I love my 2012 Kia Soul!

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