The witty Morse code message that the Dodge brothers transmitted in a recent TV ad sparked a conversation online just as the brand hoped it would.
The spot shows the brothers sitting in the Scat Pack variant of the Dodge Charger as they flash the lights in Morse code to a viewing public that's largely unfamiliar with the method, originally developed for the telegraph.
People found out soon after the spot's release in June that the brothers were throwing a playful insult at non-Dodge drivers. The Morse code message is "I'd rather walk than drive your car."
Dodge brought in a Morse code translator -- who wasn't as hard to find as you would think -- during the production process to get the message just right, said Randy Ortiz, head of Dodge and SRT brand advertising.
The lighthearted ad teased viewers who tried to figure out the message, while starting a discussion -- which is exactly what Dodge wanted to do.
The "Morse Code" commercial has drawn more than 650,000 views on YouTube since it was posted on June 8.
The spot, a continuation of the brand's irreverent marketing approach, is part of the latest round of "Dodge Brothers" ads launched last month. It was handled by agency Wieden+ Kennedy.
Dodge shared a second version on June 29 with modified dialogue that took a swipe at the Volkswagen Passat -- another attack in the ongoing ad war between the two automakers -- although the code message was unaltered. The second version is slated to air on TV as well.
"We thought it fit [the Dodge brothers'] personality but also fit with the personality of the brand," Ortiz said. "It was something that the Dodge brothers might have done."