Stuttgart. Marking the launch of the new A-class and continuing the partnership with TIDAL, Mercedes-Benz is excited to launch the new ad campaign featuring TIDAL artist-owner and global superstar Nicki Minaj. The international campaign which is created around around the claim “The new A-Class. Just like you.” features a 360-degree content campaign at www.mercedes-benz.com/a-class as the central hub. This is where interested parties can find out why the A-Class is the ideal vehicle for the lifestyle of urban, digital savvy and connected people. The campaign message is: the new A-Class understands your personal peculiarities, preferences and needs- what makes you individual and unique. It is the first car that adapts itself to you – and not vice versa. Quite simply, it is just like you.
“The A-Class is the most successful model in our compact car generation with more than three million units delivered since its market launch in 2012, it has significantly contributed to a more youthful and modern Mercedes-Benz brand image. The average age of customers in Germany has fallen by ten years, and in China around one third of all buyers are below 30 years of age. We want to build on this success with the fourth generation of the A-Class, which intelligently unites and redefines lifestyle and digitalization says Dr Jens Thiemer, Vice President Marketing Mercedes-Benz Cars. “With our campaign we stage the vehicle in a progressive and eventful way and highlight the digital product highlights such as real-time parking or the high customizability of the vehicle interior. The campaign thus reflects our philosophy of ‘human centered innovation’.”
TV commercial: emotional experience starring a celebrity A TV spot has been produced for the campaign which attractively presents and visualises the innovative features of the A-Class in an unexpected and creative manner. The spot “Like you” begins with the A-Class as a seemingly conventional car. A number of apparently standard features are mentioned. But it soon becomes apparent that this vehicle is different, digital and networked. Thanks to intelligent voice control, it can be addressed directly using the key phrase “Hey Mercedes”. The driver can use a smartphone to unlock and lock it, and the air conditioning can be controlled using simple voice control commands.
A desire for music is also met on command by the A-Class. As if by magic, TIDAL artist-owner, Nicki Minaj suddenly appears on the front passenger seat in the TV spot and her music plays from the on board speakers via TIDAL. At the end of 2018 the A-Class will have global music and entertaining platform TIDAL integrated in all vehicles. Thanks to the partnership, Mercedes-Benz customers will be able to stream more than 52 million songs and hundreds of carefully chosen playlists. The car is simply not like every other car – it is “just like you”. The spot can be viewed at http://mb4.me/a-class-like-you. Direction was by the multiple award-winning Brian Beletic, who has also directed music videos for e.g. The Black Eyed Peas or Fatboy Slim.
The two phases of the campaign are dramatically coordinated for a seamless transition from one to the other. In the teaser and pre-launch phase the communication focussed on the innovations and technical features of the A-Class. For example, impressive studio shots provided a first impression of the new triple touch control concept with a touchscreen, touchpad on the centre console and touch control buttons in the steering wheel. In addition, the communication of the voice control feature “Hey Mercedes” shows that completely normal conversations with the A-Class are possible. The futuristic ambience of the studio shots already suggests that the new A-Class will have unique technological features to offer. The studio shots are by photographer Carl Kleiner. The Swede is well-known for his colourful and highly experimental imagery and his creative, conceptual approach to motifs.
On market launch of the A-Class, the communication becomes emotional and focussed on the lifestyle of a digital and urban generation. The A-Class is modern, networked, versatile and individual – in fact “just like you”. Thanks to the new technical features, the car adapts itself to its driver. The vehicle is presented in a creative, urban environment.
“Urban Stories” for online communication
To reach the target group in the social media environment as well, the campaign also includes social media videos and posts that arouse curiosity about the new A-Class. Mercedes-Benz uses three short films to address a young, urban public. The “Urban Stories” are less focussed on the technology of the new A-Class, but instead humorously and entertainingly place the emphasis on the philosophy of “human-centred innovation” by covering technical highlights such as Mercedes-Benz User Experience (MBUX) and the new-generation Mercedes-Benz Intelligent Drive, including e.g. the safety feature “Active Brake Assist with cross-traffic function”.
The theme of the film “Touch” is the human inclination to touch things. It is precisely this desire to touch that inspired the touch interaction in the new A-Class. The “Touch” film can be seen at: http://mb4.me/urban-story-touch. The film “Habits” tells the story reflecting the human desire to shape the environment according to individual wishes. In this way the film draws attention to the personalisable settings of the A-Class that make the car the ideal environment for the driver. The subject of “Instincts” is the natural instincts shared by all humans. They help to prevent injury and damage in critical situations – just like the new safety systems of the A-Class. For example, the safety feature “Active Brake Assist with cross-traffic function” as part of the Driving Assistance package is able to brake the vehicle when crossing traffic is detected. When the car is able to predict an accident, it protects its occupants as if it had instincts of its own. Communication in the social media is rounded off by various banner formats.
The idea and conception of the campaign stem from Mercedes-Benz’s creative agency antoni. The digital campaign hub was conceived by antoni and realised by Seitwerk.
The studio shots are by photographer Carl Kleiner. Born in 1983, the Swede is well-known for his colourful and highly experimental imagery and his creative, conceptual approach to motifs.This is why his clients include companies such as Google, Calvin Klein, Apple, Nike and other global players.
The lifestyle stills are by Tom Craig. Craig is likewise a well-known fashion photographer, and particularly esteemed by clients such as Vogue, i-D, Louis Vitton or Vanity Fair. His style specialises in combining fashion with reporting photography.
Production designer Jason Hougaard has already worked for superstars such as Beyoncé, Paul McCartney, Lana del Rey or Rihanna, and lends his very special look to the campaign.
The stylist is Bay Garnett. Of British nationality, she has a particularly good relationship with great artists and has worked with photographers such as Jürgen Teller, Bruce Webber, Craig McDean or David LaChapelle. Her work has already been published in the British and Italian Vogue, 25 Magazine and Lula Magazine.
The TV spots were directed by Brian Beletic. He began his career as an in-house director at MTV, and played a major part in the launch of MTV2. He has also directed music videos for artists such as The Black Eyed Peas, Fatboy Slim, and won several MVPAs and MTV awards. Today Beletic is a multiple award-winning director with over 450 advertising films to his credit, plus several Cannes Lions, AICPs, Clios and an Emmy.