Honda, RPA Indulge Consumer Cravings with CR-V Campaign


Whether it’s Bon-Bons, buttered popcorn or ‘Da Bears, most of us have cravings, desires and obsessions in which we’ll willingly indulge.

Somehow, the folks at Honda latched onto this concept, and intertwined our vices with their new integrated campaign, “What Do You CRaVe?”, which promotes the all-new Honda CR-V (CR-V, CRaVe, get it?). In doing so, the carmaker tapped agency of record RPA to create a confectionary campaign that celebrates the “essence of consumer desires”. In less romantic terms, this means RPA juxtaposed popular cravings like chocolate, ice cream and popcorn with the goods of the CR-V.

While the CR-V TV executions—which include a combination of computer-generated, animated. :30 and :15 spots featuring the voice of Oscar winner Kevin Spacey—were showcased during the premieres of Lost and Smallville, the online CR-V push fully launched just last week with both SEM initiatives and more interestingly, an interactive site that relies on user-generated content.

“When you look at the national TV concept, they really set up this idea of craving,” Fern Shlauter, RPA Interactive Management Supervisor, tells ADOTAS. “From an online perspective, what we wanted to do with that is find a way to extend the idea of craving and make it very interactive and engaging. So we developed the concept for the website which basically involves user-generated content, and allows people who visit the site to upload photos of things that they crave—share what it is that they crave, why they crave it, and where you can get that crave.”

Along with send-to-a-friend options, users can also apply tags to their “crave” submissions, which is leveraged by Honda’s larger SEM efforts. “Say you did a search on ‘chocolate’, you might see one of our paid search listings which makes a reference to craving chocolate. And if you clicked on that and went to the site, what you would see is all of the craves associated with the word ‘chocolate.’ So we’re also tying it into our search marketing efforts to do something a little bit different there.”

In the more traditional online ad front, October is shaping up to be a busy month for the CR-V promotion. RPA is implementing homepage roadblocks on MSN, Yahoo, and AOL, with additional roadblocks of prominent entertainment sites including, People, and Fandango running throughout the month (“Because one of the things you may crave is celebrity gossip, and that fits in with our targeting skewing towards females,” Shlauter notes.) Additionally, a custom Honda CR-V sponsorship has been developed with Yahoo’s new Red Carpet website, and mobile integrations with Fandango are being planned for the near future.

As for the user-generated site, Shlauter says that as long as the traffic is there, the user-generated “craves” will have a shelf life.

But the campaign, according to the RPA exec, is just as open to the casual passerby or curious car buyer. “We know not everyone out there is going to want to submit a crave, so the idea is that a certain percentage of our audience will go to the effort of actually putting a crave in. A lot of people will spend their time just surfing through what other people’s craves are. So we made it work for your more casual user or your more dedicated user who wants to do a little bit more with it. Of course, it has a lot of product information in it, too. There are tons of photos and specs, and all the information you’d be looking for if you were currently looking into the CRV or thinking about it.”

Satisfy your cravings, or simply sample others’ at



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