Toyota Prius C Campaign and the Game of Advertising Life

As a person who grew up on TV ads, I always find it interesting to see brands explore innovative advertising in the digital space. It’s become obvious that consumers have more to do with their time than be fed advertisements, so I enjoy when a brand creates a situation that entices the consumer to “feed themselves” with superior ads.

A notable example is a campaign that Toyota is running for the new Prius C, called “The Game of Life with Prius C.” I initially discovered the campaign through a colorful display ad that brought back memories of moving a tiny car packed with peg-babies along a path that was essentially life. With one click, I was brought to an interactive page with a replica of the board game in the center. Pointing on the board were links to “Wallet Wisdom,” “Tech Talk,” “Meet the Prius C,” “Car Buying 101,” and “MPG Calculator.”









“Meet the Prius C” was the main attraction, with a fun widget that took you through steps that included changing the car’s color, choosing between sound systems and moon roof options. As in the entire campaign, each feature was clearly explained in detail, highlighting advantages of every option. Even the transition between each step was entertaining, with faceless men in full body suits tweaking the car with every specification.

The MPG calculator was also fun to use and a great selling point for the Prius C. When I input a random route into the calculator and checked off things like the frequency of my trip and the types of roads I drive on, it produced an estimate of how many miles per gallon I’m getting on my current car versus MPG I would get using the Prius C. Of course there were money values and savings involved, which gave way to that revelation that often happens with expensive hybrids- it’s worth the money.

The rest of the links on the board offered tips for almost every aspect of car purchasing. Each stuck with a very silly, comedic theme with Bill Nye the Science Guy doing “Tech Talk” (more past memories).

Toyota put a lot into involving the consumer in its campaign to the extent that one can get lost looking at the videos and other features on the page. It crosses the boundary between a 30 second commercial spot and genuine entertainment.

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