Volkswagen of America plans a national marketing campaign to help it sell more than 50,000 certified used vehicles in the United States and Canada this year.
The campaign, called "A better way to buy used," includes TV, radio and newspaper advertising, direct mail, point-of-purchase materials and a Web site.
In 2003, VW sold 39,453 certified vehicles in the United States and about 6,000 in Canada. Patrick McFall, VW certified pre-owned process leader, says the company expects to sell 51,500 vehicles in both countries in 2004.
"The program has grown organically," McFall says. "We really haven't invested a lot into it."
He declined to say how much VW is spending on the campaign.
Two 30-second TV spots promote VW certified used-vehicle sales. One, called "Scholarship," features a telephone conversation between a potential used-car buyer and the car's seller. The seller says that his teenage son drove the car. He claims it is in excellent condition. Meanwhile, the car is seen in the background speeding through a wheat field, the son yelling with delight at the wheel.
McFall says the company will run the TV commercials in VW's top 25 markets starting in mid-February.
Newspaper ads begin running in late January. The theme is life's little secrets: People who rip tags off mattresses or don't wash their hands after handling chicken.
The ads read: "You may have your secrets, but these cars don't."