Collateral damage?

Ever notice how many car ads you see on the evening news? On sports broadcasts? (Between the ones for beer and “erectile dysfunction” relief — nice promotional symbiosis there.) How much of that is Detroit money? How much of that money will go away, whether or not Detroit gets bailed out? And will Asian and European car makers spend enough to take up the slack?

Just wondering.

In any case, watch for commercial broadcasting to take more hits.

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5 Responses to Collateral damage?

  1. Not nearly as many Detroit ads as usual. The asians are taking up the slack.
    A lot of the advertising is split between the makers and the local dealers, so depending upon the area determines how much advertising gets done.
    An interesting note here in phoenix, is the activity at the insurance auto auctions.

    Previously most vehicles were salvage totals, with a small percentage of ‘drive throughs'(cars that still run and drive) Over the last few months, a lot of the dealerships have been funneling their trade-ins, and dogs like sport utes, pickup trucks, vans and other slow movers.

    This will only get worse as the bodyshops, part houses, and wrecking yards are seeing drops of between 20-50% in traffic and sales.

    The domestic auto industry is going to require retraining to stay in business. All three of them still try to compete in every segment, which is the dumbest thing to do. Dodge owned the mini-van market for 10 years, and that should have woken them up in detroit.

    Cadillac owned the luxury domestic market until they decided to build mini caddy’s like the Cimmaron, and then re-badged Chevy and GMC pickups, adding leather trimmed seats and getting folks to believe they were special.

    Lincoln made the same mistakes as caddy.

    Electric cars will not dig them out of their holes either.

  2. flip says:

    Does anyone buy a car because of a TV ad?

  3. Doc Searls says:


    I dunno how many people buy cars because of ads on TV. Some price shoppers, maybe, during the latest Toyotathon or whatever.

    Car ads on local TV stations are part of the great co-op/spiff system that’s been around since the last Depression. It’s a form of subsidy and encouragement from the car makers to the dealers.

    Funny to be writing about this in a waiting area at a Z├╝rich airport.

  4. Think about what’s going to happen in the sports world, as well. GM (and the other two to a lesser extent) is a huge advertiser there. Everyone may now begin to value imagination a little more and brute force a little less when it comes to figuring out how to interact with people. Or, maybe I’m still asleep and dreaming…

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