After relying on Regina King to tout the its Escalade and Winona Ryder and Timothee Chalamet to generate buzz for its new electric Lyriq, Cadillac is continuing down the promotional road with celebrities.
Sofia Vergara, Joe Manganiello, the Jonas Brothers, Tiffany Haddish, and Twitch and Allison Holker appear in a new series of videos that promote use of the General Motors brand’s “Super Cruise” hands-free technology. The vignettes will appear starting Thursday on YouTube and on Cadillac’s web and social channels, says Melissa Grady, chief marketing officer of Cadillac, in an interview.
“We are helping people understand the technology that exists in our cars,” says Grady, who notes that consumers make a real connection when they see a famous person reacting in the moment to an upgrade in the dashboard. There is a vivid moment, she says, when someone takes their hands off of the wheel of a car in motion and lets “Super Cruise” take the lead. Executives felt they should “go out and have some people who are very recognizable, who have big personalities, and let’s film them in this moment, have them tell the story.”
Once focused on commercials of cars motoring through a closed course or down a empty stretch of highway, car ads are in the midst of change. What’s inside the car is growing as important to consumers as the metal in the exterior, particularly as more people rely on ride-sharing services and begin to engage with new kinds of cars that rely on electricity instead of gasoline. General Motors has vowed to stop making gas-powered cars, vans and SUVs by 2035.
In the videos, directed by Elizabeth Banks, the various celebrities and their families get a taste of hands-free driving — and find they like it, despite a hint of trepidation before they take to the road. “The first time you use a new technology like Super Cruise, there’s always a ‘let go’ moment, where you gradually begin to trust it more and more,” says Banks, in a prepared statement. “I wanted to capture and then build on that moment. It really showed how much a thoughtful technology like Super Cruise can help transform your everyday experience.”
Grady, the marketing executive, says the ads will be available on social and digital channels through March. The sight of people taking their hands of the wheel “jsut feels like something you would normally see on Twitter or Instagram,” she adds.