SAN DIEGO — Hoping to challenge consumers' conventional views of tires, Toyo Tire USA Inc. is test-marketing a consumer advertising campaign that uses tongue-in-cheek humor to underscore the proper vehicle/tire relationship.
The "Your Car Deserves Better" campaign is designed to appeal to "discerning" car owners who recognize the importance of value, according to Vitro, Toyo's San Diego-based advertising agency for the past few years.
Vitro has produced two spots thus far, "Good Taste" and "Model."
In Good Taste, the spot compares a car to a fine cut of Porterhouse steak. Not putting Toyo tires on that car is akin to spraying canned cheese spread on that steak, an image graphically portrayed in the ad.
In Model, the car comparison is to an alluring, dressed-to-the-nines woman who slips on clown shoes in the ad's closing frames.
This is Toyo's first attempt to reach a broader, more mainstream audience, a Vitro spokesperson said, as opposed to the firm's more niche approach of the past that focused on the tire maker's off-road and/or high-performance audience.
"Why do so many of us settle for less than we deserve? Maybe it's just too easy to continue with the status quo," said Vitro CEO Tom Sullivan.
"Toyo Tires is a committed brand, dedicated to exacting and uncompromising quality and standards. We should all be so committed, to live our lives with such resolve."
Toyo is test-marketing the 30-second ads in three regional markets over a three-month period, with ads running for eight weeks in each market on a rolling basis.
Vitro said it considered a number of factors for choosing these three markets, including sufficient dealer representation.