LOS ANGELES -- Mazda is launching a big advertising campaign this weekend, but it's mostly skipping Sunday's big game.
Instead of spending millions of dollars on national airtime for a new 60-second commercial during the Super Bowl, Mazda is running some regional ads and leaning on about 2 million brand enthusiasts, customers, dealers and employees to spread the commercial through social media. The commercial will be broadcast nationally on Monday and continue through March, said Don Romano, chief marketing officer for Mazda North American Operations.
The commercial, entitled "Revolution," features Mazda's Skyactiv vehicle technology, which boosts power and fuel efficiency, while touting the brand's driving-enthusiast history. Mazda hopes the 2 million users on its e-mailing list receiving the commercial in their e-mail inbox on Friday will share the commercial on social networking Web sites like Facebook, Twitter and YouTube.
"We're not a mass marketer. We're not trying to attract everybody in the world, and that's what the Super Bowl does," Romano said. "We're very selective in targeting the type of people that we know will be attracted to the Skyactiv technology."
Mazda will launch the commercial on its own Facebook and YouTube pages on Sunday. The ad will have a limited regional run during the Super Bowl with a 30-second version of the spot in Dallas, St. Louis, Mo., and Little Rock, Ark.
Romano said Monday's debut of the Revolution commercial is the first phase in an ad blitz to boost the brand's exposure in North America.
Romano said Mazda's media spending is up "at least" 25 percent from last year, but didn't provide specific figures.
"Tthis is not just a one or two month plan," Romano said. "We see the, U.S., Canadian and Mexican markets as the biggest growth opportunity on the globe and we're going to take advantage of that opportunity. Mazda is in growth mode."
The Revolution campaign will be followed by the launch of the CX-5 in April.
The CX-5 is based on a new platform featuring a lightweight frame and chassis, as well as a new high-compression, direct injection engine and new more-efficient transmissions. Mazda collectively refers to these new technologies as its Skyactiv technology.