New advertising for the FIAT 500 broke over the weekend. If you’re not familiar with the little Italian car or the ad, here it is:
At first blush, it looks as if FIAT thinks the way I do about TV, that it serves as an excellent way to drive traffic to the web and, beyond that, towards a sale. Indeed, the supers “Like the car?” and “Go online” (at 0:22 in the clip) speak directly to the idea.
However, I think the ad falls short in one critical way.
First, let’s look at what happens if you go online, as the ad suggests. Here’s a screenshot of the Google results for “FIAT 500:”
Websites for FIAT and FIAT USA come up high, which is good. In fact, the FIAT USA website shows the JLO video on the landing page. So the site has succeeded in tying the landing page back to the ad.
However, why should the viewer go to the site in the first place? The ad gives the viewer no reason to learn more other than the car may (or may not, depending on your point of view) look cool. A vehicle as distinctive as the 500 does not need a commercial to tell consumers that; if they haven’t heard of the car already, they’ll certainly take notice of it when they see one on the road.
FIAT wastes an opportunity to tell us something more substantial about the car, whether that be fuel economy, driving fun or special features. All we know what the car looks like and that FIAT paid JLO a lot of money to ride around in it.