Lexus is trying to attract the young and wealthy with a promotion through Gruner + Jahr and the Young Entrepreneurs' Organization.
From June to December, the Japanese luxury brand will run a series of advertorials in G+J's Fast Company and Inc. magazines that feature six members of the Young Entrepreneurs' Organization.
The organization is a club of 4,200 business owners under age 40 whose firms generate annual revenues in excess of $1 million.
The two-page spreads will include a profile of an outstanding organization member on one page with an ad for either the IS 300 or GS 430 sedans on the opposite page. The six advertorial profile subjects were selected by Lexus, the organization and Fast Company and represent industries ranging from nutrition to animation to boat lifts.
"It's one thing to sponsor a concert or performance," said Meg Seiler, a spokeswoman for Team One, Lexus' national advertising agency. "We wanted to connect with young affluence and tell people that Lexus speaks to their desires and needs." The agency said Lexus is spending less than $1 million for the package.
The GS 430 and IS 300 were selected as the featured vehicles because their demographics closely align with a young, upscale audience. The GS 430 is targeted at 30- to 54-year-olds with annual household incomes of at least $125,000. The IS 300 is targeted at 25- to 49-year-olds with annual household incomes of at least $75,000.
Lexus also will showcase its products at Young Entrepeneurs' Organization conferences. At the group's Global Leadership Conference last month in Baltimore, Lexus displayed the GS 430 and IS 300 plus the Team Lexus race car. A Lexus race car driver was on hand to answer questions. In August, Lexus will host a "learn and drive" with its full line of cars at the group's D.C. University in Washington.
Lexus advertising will be included in the organization's new-member kits and publications. The brand also plans to conduct direct mail campaigns targeted at the group's membership.
Steve Thompson, vice president of the business innovators' group of G+J USA, said Lexus is paying for the events and the advertising.
Standard Rate and Data Service in Des Plaines, Ill., reports that an advertising page in Inc. sells for $87,000; the same page in Fast Company sells for $54,355. The rates are for four-color ads without a corporate discount.