Bryant and Katie Are Baffled Again

Bryant and Katie Are Baffled Again

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BMW is introducing their entry into the all-electric car market.  Since there are several less expensive, all-electric cars already on the market, why should anyone go out of their way to look at the BMW i3?

BMW attacks the problem with distinctiveness and metaphor.

People pay the most attention to and assume the superiority of brands that pop into mind most easily.  The significance people place on the brand or model depends on its mental availability.  Distinctiveness builds mental availability.  Being different helps a brand pop into mind more easily.

This ad is different.  It’s unlike anything else a viewer will see on TV.  The ad pairs 21 year old film of Bryant Gumble and Katie Curic completely baffled by the Internet with contemporary film of the same two celebrities baffled by the BMW i3.  When people think of electric cars, this wonderful juxtaposition of baffled celebrities then and now has to pop into their heads.  The ad takes the i3 from unknown to front-and-center among electric cars.

While the distinctiveness builds the mental availability of the BMW i3, the metaphor links the i3 with those ideas that the mind will associate with the i3, ideas like being as revolutionary and transforming as the Internet.

If the ad had claimed that the BMW i3 is to other forms of driving as the Internet was to other forms of communication, few people would pay attention and fewer would believe it.  The ad makes no such claim.  It simply leads viewers to that conclusion encouraging them to finish the journey.  That’s the beauty of metaphor.  It makes a claim both more interesting and more believable because it enlists the participation of the audience.

The ad will get the i3 noticed and considered.

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