Chevrolet’s Camaro & Ford’s Mustang have long been rivals. And nowhere is this rivalry more intensely played out than amongst the hardcore fans of the two classic muscle cars.
On Mustang’s 54th birthday, we knew Ford would be making some noise and the Mustang fanbase would have a big reason to celebrate. But we didn’t want our own Camaro fans left out in the cold - So we decided to turn Mustang’s birthday momentum against itself, and turn the date into a celebration of Camaro instead.
Describe the creative idea.
The creative idea was simple – to have Camaro highjack Ford’s #Mustang54 birthday hashtag. And we set out to do this with a simple film. We didn’t want to come across as petty or jealous – that’s certainly not something Camaro fans would appreciate. So we maintained the high ground, by delivering a happy birthday message through our film, and acknowledging Mustang as the worthy rival it is. But of course, we made sure Camaro had the last word, by baking Mustang a cake, but having Camaro blow out the candles for them.
Describe the strategy.
Brands in the region aren’t allowed to directly reference or show competitors in their advertising. So, our friendly jab at Mustang’s expense needed to be approached with some tact. Feeling a bit cheeky, we turned this handicap to our advantage – using our birthday cake gift to reference Ford’s Mustang (why give their car the free coverage?) and leaning into the rivalry by giving them a cute nickname: “little pony”.
Those in the know would understand. And that’s all that mattered.
Describe the execution.
The 16-second spot opens on a close-up of a logo, unmistakably that of the Ford Mustang, the Chevrolet Camaro’s biggest rival. A light humming can be heard.
Panning back, reveals the logo to be a cake with 2 burning candles spelling out “54” (commemorating Mustang’s 54th birthday) and we see the familiar gentleman holding it: Taifi, Chevrolet’s brand ambassador, featured in all our ads.
Zooming out further, we see Taifi is standing on an empty desert road, sporting shades and a cool expression. We notice the light humming in the background rapidly getting louder and higher in pitch. Suddenly, a red blur explodes past the screen and we cut to a close-up of the candles instantly blown out by the force.
We reveal the Chevy Camaro, now seen zooming off into the distance.
Supers fade in:
We end on the Camaro & Chevy logos.
List the results.
The film was a hit – and spread like wildfire on people’s social feeds. We gave it a little push (under $4,000), but most shares & views were organic.
• Over 3.8 Million reached
• 1.6 Million views
• 81% organic views on Facebook
The film broke every Chevrolet social media record out there.
• Over 8.6K shares & re-tweets
• 6,000+ comments
• 28% engagement rate (8X higher engagement than our benchmark!)
• 7% brand uplift (Facebook)
The real win was when Camaro fans saw the response from their Mustang rivals. Few examples:
• “As a Mustang owner, I appreciate this, I love our rivalry” (Facebook)
• “As a Mustang owner, I love this video…. Chevrolet just won my respect.” (Facebook)
The film captured the region’s attention and the world’s, being picked up by dozens of global publications. Ad Age led with the headline: “Watch Camaro Crash Mustang’s Birthday”.