The senior VP-marketing and product development of Mazda North American Operations faced the tricky challenge of launching both the new four-door sedan and five-door hatchback models in January.
Mr. Davis, 40, says his team debated whether to do different ad executions for each model since the targets varied. The marketer decided on one TV campaign for both since "one target didn't outright reject the other model." But independent Doner, Southfield, Mich., did create separate print ads for each with different titles bought to reach the two. Mazda seems to have nailed it: The median age of the five-door buyers is in their early 20s and late 20s for the four-door version.
On the media side, Mazda "owned the day" Jan. 1 not only with TV buys but in-cinema screen ads, newspaper wraps and coffee sleeves. The marketer maximized its spending with a viral, online video in the spring that was forwarded 600,000 times.
The Mazda3 was also the featured model in the brand's second "Rev It Up" amateur driving competition tour. Mr. Davis, who has raced a Mazda Miata on weekends since 1996, says of the Mazda3 "this car is perfectly aligned with our brand and resonates with a young mind-set that wants cars that aren't compromised."