Chicago—August 30, 2004—Cars.com announced today that it will ramp-up its integrated advertising campaign to coincide with the fall car-buying season. Building on the launch of its "Joy" campaign earlier this year, Cars.com returns to the airwaves today with nearly 2,000 spots on leading cable networks, and increased promotion across its network of 175 local newspaper and television partners.
"Our entire campaign was developed to drive quality consumers to our site and ultimately to our dealer customers," said Mitch Golub, president of Cars.com. "With the close of the 2004 model year and new inventory arriving on dealer lots, it's important that we increase our on air presence now to support our advertisers during the critical fall car shopping season."
The center of the national television campaign is sponsorship of ESPN's "SportsCenter," the number one sports information show. Cars.com will sponsor two features per week including 'Top-Ten' and 'Call of the Day'. Additionally, Cars.com will also have a presence on top-rated ESPN shows including the "NFL Postgame SportsCenter" and "Baseball Tonight." In addition to its anchor package on ESPN, the Cars.com commercials will also air on the most popular sports, news, lifestyle and education programs of premier cable networks including Discovery, CNN, CNBC, Food Network, MSNBC, TLC and WGN.
"Our return to the airwaves and current media mix allows Cars.com to reach consumers who are actively tuning in to their televisions for the start of football season, baseball playoffs and election coverage," said Golub. "We are reaching an audience of information seeking consumers with a strong message that Cars.com is the site to help them research a car and locate a dealer."
The campaign features: 30 television spots that all portray the joy a shopper feels in finding the right car. Created and produced by DDB Chicago, "Big Moment" and "Hand Shake" showcase the quality connections made between ready-to-buy customers and their local dealer.
"To date, the campaign message has been well received by both dealers and consumers," said Golub. "It's been successful because the spots emphasize the positive connection between buyers and sellers who come together through our site. After using the Internet, consumers are ready to buy and feel confident about their buying decision. Our ads showcase the joy they feel when they arrive on the dealer lot, knowing they have found the right car and the right dealer."
Cars.com launched its integrated media campaign in May 2004 to drive quality site traffic. In addition to national cable advertising and increased local promotion, Cars.com launched an aggressive online marketing program including ads on leading sites ESPN.com and Discovery.com, search marketing on Google and the Overture Network and exclusive partnerships with leading consumer destinations such as Kelley Blue Book's kbb.com and MSN Autos. Online efforts are expected to drive a high volume of qualified visits, as is a new partnership with MSNBC.com launched on August 16.
Partnered with 175 leading metro newspapers, television stations and their Web sites, Cars.com is the one-stop shop for those looking to buy or sell a new or used car. The site places vehicle listings from more than 7,400 dealers alongside nationwide classified advertising and private-party listings to offer consumers the best selection of new and used cars online, as well as the content, tools and advice to support their shopping experience. Cars.com combines powerful inventory search tools and new-car configuration with pricing information, photo galleries, buying guides, side-by-side comparison tools, original editorial content and reviews to help millions of consumers connect with sellers each month.
Launched in June 1998, Cars.com is a division of Classified Ventures, LLC, (http://classifiedventures.com), which is owned by six leading media companies including, Belo (NYSE: BLC), Gannett Co., Inc. (NYSE: GCI), Knight Ridder (NYSE: KRI), The McClatchy Company (NYSE: MNI), Tribune Company (NYSE: TRB) and The Washington Post Company. (NYSE: WPO). ). For more information, visit www.cars.com.