Charlie Sheen – the “ultimate” bad boy. Probably the guy you would put in a commercial to promote a product’s evil twin. That is what Doner and Richards Group, Chrysler’s two advertising agencies thought when they did a commercial for Fiat 500′s bad boy version – the pumped Abarth model. The commercial is called “House Arrest”, and it was first intended to be displayed at Super Bowl. However, as it was not ready in time, a sexier ad dubbed “Seduction”, featuring Catrinel Menghia – a Romanian super model, took its place. And it received extremely positive feedback before (obviously), so its success at Super Bowl was kind of a sure thing.
“It ["Seduction" ad] was born for the Abarth reveal at the L.A. Auto Show… We streamed the video live, it grew organically and achieved 1 million hits in less than a week. With all of the positive feedback that we received not only from consumers and dealers, ‘Seduction’ was the perfect choice for Super Bowl to generate brand awareness,” said Tim Kuniskis, Fiat’s Brand Manager for the U.S. market.
After making a ridiculous step shooting commercials with J.Lo for the regular 500 version, the guys at Fiat decided to rethink their strategy. Or have they? Okay the “Seduction” ad has some sort of a point. But Charlie Sheen? Come on. What’s makes his commercial different from the J.Lo ones? He’s also a cheesy celeb, whose peak of career is being known for the ability of snorting extraordinary amounts of the white substance and staying alive. Yes, his “Tiger Blood” mumbo-jumbo was pretty entertaining, but that was months ago. Furthermore, the commercial follows a banal logic “we have a mean car – let’s hire a bad ass guy to promote it”, although they have received plenty of advice after the J.Lo fiasco to concentrate more on the car’s heritage – which it has plenty of. Some people never learn, do they? Strangely, poor advertising seems to do the trick, as the sales of Fiat 500 were up 69% in February, according to the company.