The "Pennzoil Stop & Go Challenge" tour, which involves four tractor-trailer trucks making 100 stops in 40 markets, refers to the marketer's "Stop. Go. Pennzoil" advertising tagline, introduced in January 1997.
This is the marketer's first tour promotion.
"We debated whether to just put a commercial on the air, but we wanted to tell [our story] face-to-face," said Tom Floyd, chief marketing officer at Pennzoil. He said the tour will be "more hard hitting than mass media."
Pennzoil, which spent $28 million in media advertising in 1997, isn't abandoning it.
Agency GSD&M, Austin, Texas, has developed a TV spot, three radio commercials and magazine ads for PureBase. Radio started airing in spot markets in late May, with print in May issues of magazines. The TV support will break in late summer.
GSD&M also created the Pennzoil graphics on the trucks.
"For PureBase, our media focus is heavily toward DIY -- do-it-yourselfers -- people who change their own oil," said Joe Burkhart, media supervisor at the agency. "The product is best received by people who care about what goes into making a motor oil."
The stops include high-attendance venues like motorsports' tracks, county fairs and air shows, Mr. Floyd said.
CUSTOMIZED COMPUTER GAME
Visitors can play a customized car-racing game on 12 computers. While they wait to play, they may watch a video screen with messages about PureBase. They need the information provided by the videos when they play the game.
Owens Kerry Group, San Francisco, is handling the tour. Volmer Public Relations, Houston, is handling the tour's public relations.