DDB New York Debuts Subaru Site

Subaru of America’s new agency, DDB New York, has launched the first Web site for its new client, thinkfeeldrive.com.

“The point of the print ad and theme line ‘Think. Feel. Drive.’ is to add greater emotional dimension and value to the Subaru brand,” said Lee Garfinkel, chairman and chief creative officer, DDB New York.

The microsite, which was launched in conjunction with TV spots and print ads, is meant to reflect and explain the newly introduced Subaru global brand philosophy.

“The site itself is as much an extension of ‘Think. Feel. Drive.’ as the print and the TV,” said Joe Cianciotto, creative director at DDB New York. “We wanted to create a scenario in which we really engaged the user and also let them play with it.”

Yin Bo Ma, the art director on the Subaru account, was responsible for the campaign’s — and therefore the site’s — overall look and feel.

Sticking with the three-item theme, the site invites people to read, experience, and see the Subaru lineup. The “Read it.” section features a gearshift as a navigational device, which users can employ to view a textual explanation of the “Think. Feel. Drive.” concept. The “See it.” section shows a Flash video, which users can either watch all the way through or click around to distinct sections. The “Experience it.” section lets users click on a model, which promptly speeds onto the screen.

“As you play through it, they have their own distinct personalities — the way the cars move,” said Cianciotto. “For us, it was about capturing the soul of what the brand was, and the Web site was where it played out.”

To drive traffic to the microsite, DDB New York sent two email campaigns: a set of four messages to an internal Subaru audience and a single message to the company’s house email list. Subaru also links to the site from its main corporate Web presence.

Accompanying TV ads began on March 21; print ads will begin appearing in May in publications such as The Wall Street Journal, Men’s Journal, Real Simple, Sunset, Bicycling, and Outside. Print executions will link readers to the microsite. Radio ads will begin airing this summer. No online advertising is planned.

To measure success, DDB New York will track visits to the site, as well as referrals from the microsite to specific model pages on Subaru.com. It will also look at user interactions with the video.

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