an Ad a Day

A look at the marketing that surrounds us.

Toyota Prius: Nature People

Posted by Rosepixie on June 10, 2010

This is a recent ad for the Toyota Prius.

So this is one of those commercials that I had to watch a couple of times before I really had any idea what to say about it.  I’m beginning to feel like car ads are more about the gimmick in the ad than about the car itself.  Maybe it’s a bet between car ad designers or something – whoever can get away with the most random thing in their commercial wins!  I don’t think this is winning (I’m guessing the current front runner is either one of Kia’s ads or something from Asia), but it’s certainly weird.

The problem here is that this ad is so busy distracting viewers with the weird people-as-nature thing (which, by the way, strips actual nature out of the picture entirely) that it doesn’t really tell us anything about the car.  We get some vague statements said by a voice that is typically the kind giving us information, so I think they’re hoping we’ll think it’s information, but “more power and less smog” is not actually informative.  It’s fuzzy and unspecific.

And the people, randomly popping up like the munchkins from the beginning of MGM’s The Wizard of Oz, give more of an impression that the car is creating nature than that it’s helping to preserve it.  That is definitely a confusion of message as well.

This is just such an odd ad.  It feels like it should be selling something far less serious than a car.  I’m not sure what it would be selling, actually.  Flower costumes, maybe?

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One Response to “Toyota Prius: Nature People”

  1. Ben said

    But, to be fair, people looking for info about the car who can’t find Toyota’s website maybe aren’t the target market. So, that being the case, why not go with the wacky?

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