EL SEGUNDO, CA--(Marketwire - Aug 30, 2012) - LA-based creative agency David&Goliath has delivered a new campaign for the Kia Soul, its fourth integrated effort featuring the iconic music-loving Soul hamsters. The campaign, titled "Bringing Down the House" will premiere on more than 18,000 movie screens nationwide with a 60-second commercial on Friday, August 31, before making its national television debut during MTV's Video Music Awards (VMAs) on September 6.
In the new ads, the hamsters and their distinctly stylish Kia Soul infiltrate an 18th century opera house, where they show a stiff bourgeoisie crowd "A New Way to Roll." The new spot features the summer's most popular electronic concert anthem, "In My Mind" remixed by Axwell -- a member of the DJ trio Swedish House Mafia (the original track, by Ivan Gough and Feenixpawl, features Georgi Kay).
"The new campaign for Soul brings a fresh musical perspective that blends the electronic and opera worlds in a way that's musically and visually unexpected, putting the hamsters once again at the cutting edge of pop culture," said David Angelo, Founder and Chief Creative Officer, David&Goliath. "The spot showcases the lifestyle that Soul represents and demonstrates through its tagline, 'A New Way to Roll,' which is all about positivity, creativity and optimism."
Blending musical genres, cultural influences
The campaign highlights the emergence of electronic music, which has quickly found its way into the mainstream and some of today's biggest musical acts, such as Swedish House Mafia, Deadmau5 and Skrillex. This, coupled with a new wave of young artists incorporating classical music and instrumentation into their music, creates a modern-day remix of young and old.
The commercial starts with all the grandeur and scale of an epic Hollywood period film. Viewers see an orchestra, ballet dancers, an opera singer and a slightly odd conductor. As the opera music and vocals fill the air, the conductor unexpectedly takes the performance in a new direction when he introduces a Kia Soul. The vehicle rises up through the floor taking everyone by surprise. He then rips off his mask -- revealing a human-sized hamster. From there, the other hamsters are revealed, whose positivity and energy inspires even the crustiest of the upper crust opera crowd to set aside their inhibitions and discover their inner party animal (or inner hamster), turning the opera house into an epic modern day club scene -- complete with a laser light show, the latest dance trends, and an equally epic hamster stage dive. As soon as everyone is on their feet and moving to the music, the hamsters realize their job is done. They get back into their Soul and take off into hyperspace.
"Music continues to play an important role in our marketing efforts as the Soul attracts a new generation of consumers to the Kia brand," said Michael Sprague, Executive Vice President, Marketing & Communications, Kia Motors America. "Our new multifaceted campaign will continue to raise consumer awareness, perception and consideration for the Kia brand through online engagement, experiential activations and TV."
The evolution of Kia Soul
The Kia Soul was introduced to the world three years ago as 'A New Way to Roll.' The advertising campaign was designed to appeal to a new and younger audience who wanted to stand out in their group but still fit in. In an incredibly unique approach for the automotive category, it featured a crew of hip hamsters cruising the city in their distinctive Soul making all the other hamsters on ordinary hamster wheels envious. The TV commercial was named "Automotive Ad of the Year" by Nielsen based on ratings from 2.5 million consumers and won an EFFIE along with a host of other advertising awards.
Building on the success of the Soul launch and the hamsters' popularity, phase two of the campaign further demonstrated the Kia hamsters had their paws on the pulse of pop culture. In the style of a music video set to the classic hip hop track, "The Choice Is Yours" by the Black Sheep, the hamsters cruise through the city in their Kia Soul. They pass other hamsters in toasters, washing machines and cardboard boxes -- which were fun metaphors for the competition. The Kia hamsters rap the song's lyrics -- "You can get with this, or you can get with that" -- making the other hamsters in their vanilla rides jealous. The Kia Soul commercial once again was named "Automotive Ad of the Year" by Nielsen for an unprecedented two years in a row, won another EFFIE and a pile of other advertising accolades.
Phase three saw the hamsters invade the soulless, futuristic world of a first-person-shooter videogame where alien robots and humanoids were locked in brutal combat. That is, until the hamsters show up in their green Kia Soul, exit the car with the stereo blasting the summer's hottest song, "Party Rock Anthem" by LMFAO, and begin shuffling. The aliens and humanoids can't hold back the urge to drop their weapons and dance to the infectious beats. Eventually this gloomy, war-torn world becomes brighter as the hamsters and warriors all dance in unison. The hamsters then drive off into the sunset in their Soul as the warriors dance on. And with more than 20 million views on YouTube and numerous industry accolades, in 2012 the hamsters were voted into the Advertising Walk of Fame.
David&Goliath is a full-service, independent creative agency based in Los Angeles. Founded in 1999, David&Goliath helps its clients outwit, outwork and outlast their competition with the knowledge, resources and firepower needed to help challenger brands fight their way to market leadership. Current clients include Kia Motors, California Lottery, Universal Studios and MGM Resorts (Monte Carlo and New York-New York), to name a few. The agency's vision is to always be the leading-edge creative agency that solves Goliath marketing challenges, and most importantly, gets results.
David&Goliath was named 2011 Small Agency of the Year (76-150 Employees) by Ad Age.
About Kia Motors America
Kia Motors America is the marketing and distribution arm of Kia Motors Corporation based in Seoul, South Korea. KMA offers a complete line of vehicles through more than 755 dealers throughout the United States and serves as the "Official Automotive Partner" of the NBA and LPGA. In 2011, KMA recorded its best-ever annual sales total and became one of the fastest growing car companies in the U.S.1 Kia is poised to continue its momentum and will continue to build the brand through design innovation, quality, value, advanced safety features and new technologies.
Information about Kia Motors America and its full vehicle line-up is available at its website -- www.kia.com. For media information, including photography, visit www.kiamedia.com.
1 Based on 5-year cumulative growth between 12-month retail sales for periods ending July 2007 and July 2012 of all U.S. automotive brands.