Hyundai Motor Company along with Innocean Worldwide, a marketing and Communications Company, released a video advertisement with the intention of promoting the Tucson iX35 and the automobile’s 100% water emissions. The video depicted a man taping a hose to a Hyundai iX35’s exhaust pipe into the cabin of the vehicle to commit suicide but failing because the vehicle’s emissions were 100% water. The video brought into question the effect of using dark humor in advertisement. This case illustrates the potential negative effect that a promotional campaign can have on a brand, on company reputation and on connecting with customers. In taking the role of Hyundai, students are asked to evaluate the unplanned effect of an advertisement and to develop a response (a possible solution) to the public’s negative reactions.
- Identify risks of using dark humor in advertising.
- Evaluate the impact of a promotional campaign using an effectiveness model.
- Identify and evaluate the effects on brand equity after a controversial promotional campaign.
Propose responses to limit the negative effect of the suicide advertisement.