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Cadillac Reveals Dare Greatly Campaign: 5 Questions with CMO Uwe Ellinghaus
BrandChannel
February 16, 2015


Cadillac has revealed the underpinning of its looming brand "resurrection" in the lead-up to the debut of its new marketing campaign during ABC's 2015 Oscars ceremony telecast on February 22. Borrowing from one of the most famous speeches by Theodore Roosevelt, Cadillac's new global tagline and brand positioning theme will be "Dare Greatly."

Seeding the new platform, the brand quietly launched a social media and outdoor teaser campaign in recent weeks with the hashtag #DareGreatly, ahead of releasing a video on YouTube that quotes from a key passage in a speech by President Roosevelt commonly known as "The Man in the Arena," which he delivered in 1910 at the Sorbonne in Paris.

A female voiceover intones the passage while downtown street scenes from New York City, including Soho and Dumbo, are shown from the point of view of someone driving its streets, featuring none of Cadillac's products.

Cadillac has been teasing "Dare Greatly" with billboards in a handful of major US cities (including one at the iconic corner of Broadway and Houston in Soho) that have been using excerpts from the speech to challenge viewers to think of themselves as principled, indefatigable, impassioned contrarians, because that is what Cadillac is going to do as a brand. Initially, the outdoor signage only displayed a quote without an author or "owner"; on Sunday, additional copy revealed the brand behind it with the hashtag, #DareGreatly.


It's all part of Cadillac CMO Uwe Ellinghaus's bold plan to revitalize the identity of the brand by cloaking it in a particularly American kind of determination, accomplishment and style, even while this is a global campaign.

His conviction has been that, while Cadillac is making its best products ever, sales have been falling short lately in the US because the brand has lapsed into an indistinct identity that hasn't inspired premium car buyers to come its way instead of going with "safe" choices like rival German brands.

BrandChannel spoke with Ellinghaus in the brand's new hometown New York, just several days before the Feb. 22 debut of the bold (and cinematic) new platform and brand positioning during the 87th Academy Awards on ABC, which will go a long way toward determining the success of his efforts over the last 15 months.

Interview

BrandChannel: Why do you need to do all of this? What's wrong with the old Cadillac brand?
Uwe Ellinghaus: We want to resurrect the Cadillac brand and bring it back to greatness. There is a great product-driven change as well, as the brand is embarking on a new journey and investing billions of dollars in new products, including the CT6 [top-end sedan] that we'll reveal at the New York International Auto Show.

But the Cadillac brand needed to change. We've lost some of our old customers and we're not conquesting enough new customers—because we lack relevance. We need to have a new point of view to show why we're relevant and to get across how much Cadillac has changed.

You can't just put product—even great product, which we have—in front of people. If the brand isn't relevant, people don't care.
BC: So you've come up with an approach that appeals to what you call "entrepreneurialism"—the idea of taking risks and demonstrating the sort of irrepressible drive that compels people to start businesses?
Ellinghaus: Yes, and it's tapping into the Millennial mindset. Becoming a banker isn't cool anymore. But if you develop an app, you're successful. The "corporate world" has lost appeal. The idea to be self-employed is universally shared.
BC: You've made a big deal about resurrecting the Cadillac brand in a form that differentiates it from "the Germans." How are you going to do that?
Ellinghaus: We can allow more passion than the Germans allow, because passion is infectious. The German (auto) brands are ordered and disciplined. They are about technology; we aim for ingenuity.

But is this credible for Cadillac? Yes. Passion is in our blood, in our body, in our birthplace. After all, a 61-year-old founded the brand. And in the Fifties, Cadillac design showed a forward-looking spirit, like the cars wanted to get to the moon!

But we won't "outdo" luxury; we won't use "attention to detail" and other craftsmanship cliches. "Luxury" is associated with European brands more than with American brands; we're not LVMH or Bentley.

Luxury consumption has become so much more intrinsic over the last 20 years. It is about stylistic individuality, not status. And now so many more people have access to luxury goods, with low interest rates [in the US enabling big-ticket purchases].

We want to "outwit" luxury, to dare greatly and create interplay among the brand values of boldness, sophistication and optimism, and yet be inviting and approachable. We want to inspire. We want people to dream Cadillac again instead of demonstrating one-upsmanship such as "more horsepower," "more torque," etc.
BC: Hasn't Cadillac repositioned itself before?
Ellinghaus: Yes. But this is a reinvention, not just a repositioning. And it's a product renaissance as well. So we have the right to say we are "daring greatly" ourselves. This is not just a "campaign." We want people to say, "Look how much Cadillac has changed." And we will get some criticism.

But we already have gotten a very strong endorsement of the campaign: from the US Cadillac dealer council. They have seen the campaign elements already and they are strongly behind what we are doing. And it is they who experience daily what lacking relevance has meant for the Cadillac brand. They have been ready to embrace this change.
BC: Recently, Cadillac has trimmed some sedan prices because you've gotten resistance from consumers and dealers; essentially, that's what happens when you have worthy products but a weak brand, right?
Ellinghaus: Yes. And this campaign will help people acknowledge that the cars deserve the reputations and pricing that they have.

Link
 

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Re: Campaign "Dare Greatly" of Cadillac: 5 Questions with CMO Uwe Ellinghaus

¡Very inspiring! I enjoy learning from people who really know what they say, but more so when they do so with an objective point of view, with frankness and humility.

The strategy is quite clear, and I think the slogan "Dare Greatly" transmits exactly. The answer to the second question is key...

I am very excited about the future of Cadillac! I trust the knowledge and expertise of Uwe and Johan. Finally there is a direction, a clear destination in the journey of the mark; which until now was like a ship sailing the high seas aimlessly (even without captain).
 

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Re: Campaign "Dare Greatly" of Cadillac: 5 Questions with CMO Uwe Ellinghaus

Again I post:

Cadillac Reveals Dare Greatly Campaign: 5 Questions with CMO Uwe Ellinghaus
BrandChannel
February 16, 2015


Cadillac has revealed the underpinning of its looming brand "resurrection" in the lead-up to the debut of its new marketing campaign during ABC's 2015 Oscars ceremony telecast on February 22. Borrowing from one of the most famous speeches by Theodore Roosevelt, Cadillac's new global tagline and brand positioning theme will be "Dare Greatly."

Seeding the new platform, the brand quietly launched a social media and outdoor teaser campaign in recent weeks with the hashtag #DareGreatly, ahead of releasing a video on YouTube that quotes from a key passage in a speech by President Roosevelt commonly known as "The Man in the Arena," which he delivered in 1910 at the Sorbonne in Paris.

Cadillac has been teasing "Dare Greatly" with billboards in a handful of major US cities (including one at the iconic corner of Broadway and Houston in Soho) that have been using excerpts from the speech to challenge viewers to think of themselves as principled, indefatigable, impassioned contrarians, because that is what Cadillac is going to do as a brand. Initially, the outdoor signage only displayed a quote without an author or "owner"; on Sunday, additional copy revealed the brand behind it with the hashtag, #DareGreatly.


It's all part of Cadillac CMO Uwe Ellinghaus's bold plan to revitalize the identity of the brand by cloaking it in a particularly American kind of determination, accomplishment and style, even while this is a global campaign.

His conviction has been that, while Cadillac is making its best products ever, sales have been falling short lately in the US because the brand has lapsed into an indistinct identity that hasn't inspired premium car buyers to come its way instead of going with "safe" choices like rival German brands.

BrandChannel spoke with Ellinghaus in the brand's new hometown New York, just several days before the Feb. 22 debut of the bold (and cinematic) new platform and brand positioning during the 87th Academy Awards on ABC, which will go a long way toward determining the success of his efforts over the last 15 months.

The interview

BrandChannel: Why do you need to do all of this? What's wrong with the old Cadillac brand?
Uwe Ellinghaus: We want to resurrect the Cadillac brand and bring it back to greatness. There is a great product-driven change as well, as the brand is embarking on a new journey and investing billions of dollars in new products, including the CT6 [top-end sedan] that we'll reveal at the New York International Auto Show.

But the Cadillac brand needed to change. We've lost some of our old customers and we're not conquesting enough new customers—because we lack relevance. We need to have a new point of view to show why we're relevant and to get across how much Cadillac has changed.

You can't just put product—even great product, which we have—in front of people. If the brand isn't relevant, people don't care.
BC: So you've come up with an approach that appeals to what you call "entrepreneurialism"—the idea of taking risks and demonstrating the sort of irrepressible drive that compels people to start businesses?
Ellinghaus: Yes, and it's tapping into the Millennial mindset. Becoming a banker isn't cool anymore. But if you develop an app, you're successful. The "corporate world" has lost appeal. The idea to be self-employed is universally shared.
BC: You've made a big deal about resurrecting the Cadillac brand in a form that differentiates it from "the Germans." How are you going to do that?
Ellinghaus: We can allow more passion than the Germans allow, because passion is infectious. The German (auto) brands are ordered and disciplined. They are about technology; we aim for ingenuity.

But is this credible for Cadillac? Yes. Passion is in our blood, in our body, in our birthplace. After all, a 61-year-old founded the brand. And in the Fifties, Cadillac design showed a forward-looking spirit, like the cars wanted to get to the moon!

But we won't "outdo" luxury; we won't use "attention to detail" and other craftsmanship cliches. "Luxury" is associated with European brands more than with American brands; we're not LVMH or Bentley.

Luxury consumption has become so much more intrinsic over the last 20 years. It is about stylistic individuality, not status. And now so many more people have access to luxury goods, with low interest rates [in the US enabling big-ticket purchases].

We want to "outwit" luxury, to dare greatly and create interplay among the brand values of boldness, sophistication and optimism, and yet be inviting and approachable. We want to inspire. We want people to dream Cadillac again instead of demonstrating one-upsmanship such as "more horsepower," "more torque," etc.
BC: Hasn't Cadillac repositioned itself before?
Ellinghaus: Yes. But this is a reinvention, not just a repositioning. And it's a product renaissance as well. So we have the right to say we are "daring greatly" ourselves. This is not just a "campaign." We want people to say, "Look how much Cadillac has changed." And we will get some criticism.

But we already have gotten a very strong endorsement of the campaign: from the US Cadillac dealer council. They have seen the campaign elements already and they are strongly behind what we are doing. And it is they who experience daily what lacking relevance has meant for the Cadillac brand. They have been ready to embrace this change.
BC: Recently, Cadillac has trimmed some sedan prices because you've gotten resistance from consumers and dealers; essentially, that's what happens when you have worthy products but a weak brand, right?
Ellinghaus: Yes. And this campaign will help people acknowledge that the cars deserve the reputations and pricing that they have.

Link

I hope not return to "disappear"...
 

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Re: Campaign "Dare Greatly" of Cadillac: 5 Questions with CMO Uwe Ellinghaus

Oh well. Cadihack is once again trying to do through marketing that which they cannot do by building a world class product. This is EXACTLY why GM filed bankruptcy - brashness without product.
 

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Re: Campaign "Dare Greatly" of Cadillac: 5 Questions with CMO Uwe Ellinghaus

Does he really talk like that?
 
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Re: Campaign "Dare Greatly" of Cadillac: 5 Questions with CMO Uwe Ellinghaus

I actually like it. I think it frankly acknowledges Cadillac's current place in the eyes of buyers, yet signifies its future ambitions.
 

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Re: Campaign "Dare Greatly" of Cadillac: 5 Questions with CMO Uwe Ellinghaus

"Low interest rates [in the US enabling big ticket purchase]." True luxury.

There's a business model for you. Sold a lot of houses back in the day. Very Mitsubishi like: "0% Interest. 0 Downpayment. 0 payments for a year."
 

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Re: Campaign "Dare Greatly" of Cadillac: 5 Questions with CMO Uwe Ellinghaus

Am I the only one who thinks that in the world of luxury, saying "yep, we sucked, but we will not suck anymore.............. we promise," is not a good path to greatness??
Seriously. That gets old fast and GM has been doing it with its entire product portfolio for a couple decades.
 

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Re: Campaign "Dare Greatly" of Cadillac: 5 Questions with CMO Uwe Ellinghaus

Let's just hope they don't half ass market the vehicles again. I never want to see another Cadillac commercial without the vertical led's. All commercials should be the highest trimmed version of he car. I want commercials to continue through out the year, not for a couple months.
 

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Re: Campaign "Dare Greatly" of Cadillac: 5 Questions with CMO Uwe Ellinghaus

Am I reading the same article over and over and over again here on GMI? I swear this has been posted before. Or is he using the same responses in each interview?

Ellinghaus knows what he's doing. That much is certain.
I can't wait for Cadillacs reinvention.
 

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Re: Campaign "Dare Greatly" of Cadillac: 5 Questions with CMO Uwe Ellinghaus

Like others above had said, this tact has been publicly stated before, more than once. It is ill-advised and will only reinforce negatives in the minds of many. Ellinghaus is making the same mistake others in leadership positions within GM have made before. IE; he's more the the 'same old' in this regard. NEVER acknowledge the impressions of failure publicly; it only serves to push those on the fence, off it.
 

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Re: Campaign "Dare Greatly" of Cadillac: 5 Questions with CMO Uwe Ellinghaus

Like others above had said, this tact has been publicly stated before, more than once. It is ill-advised and will only reinforce negatives in the minds of many. Ellinghaus is making the same mistake others in leadership positions within GM have made before. IE; he's more the the 'same old' in this regard. NEVER acknowledge the impressions of failure publicly; it only serves to push those on the fence, off it.
I completely 100% DISAGREE.

I think for the first time in decades, Cadillac actually has a leader with a proper vision for the brand and how it fits within Cadillac's vision of a luxury lifestyle.
He knows what it takes to reinvent the brand. He knows what it takes to sell to a luxury customer. He knows that a luxury brand requires more care and feeding and careful positioning.

He knows this from his time at BMW and Montblanc. He comes to GM with a luxury pedigree in tow, as well as automotive industry. This is EXACTLY the person Cadillac has always needed -- not some clueless gear head.


People on GMI might think he's nuts or crazy or "more of the same," but I think he's going to be the DISRUPTIVE force that is needed to change Cadillac.
 

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Re: Campaign "Dare Greatly" of Cadillac: 5 Questions with CMO Uwe Ellinghaus

GM and Caddies woes are front page news. It doesnt take much of a find in the news world to read about GMs struggles. He isnt saying nothing new. Getting the products to market with this new slogan is there main priority along with shaping up the dealerships. Looking how far Caddy has come from 03 and looking at how bad the 90s were comparingly. Im happy with the progress but of course time could speed up some.
 

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Re: Campaign "Dare Greatly" of Cadillac: 5 Questions with CMO Uwe Ellinghaus

I think some of you taking this too literally. It's not about the cars directly, it's about the entrepreneurial spirit and appealing to that type of person. Cadillac is building it's best cars ever, now it's up Uwe and co. to appeal to people through emotion, not facts and figures.
 

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Re: Campaign "Dare Greatly" of Cadillac: 5 Questions with CMO Uwe Ellinghaus

Am I the only one who thinks that in the world of luxury, saying "yep, we sucked, but we will not suck anymore.............. we promise," is not a good path to greatness??

Uh, it sure as hell worked for Jeep.


There are key differences though - shall we say..... that included a more realistic appraisal ?

Also - no reek of basically propaganda.

Although to be fair, the GC itself hit the target.........
 

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Re: Campaign "Dare Greatly" of Cadillac: 5 Questions with CMO Uwe Ellinghaus

I think some of you taking this too literally. It's not about the cars directly, it's about the entrepreneurial spirit and appealing to that type of person. Cadillac is building it's best cars ever, now it's up Uwe and co. to appeal to people through emotion, not facts and figures.
Thanks for that. I read these posts daily and most of the responses here say nothing more than "they will faill...watch....they will fail!"

When the success comes, watch how they all will JUMP on the bandwagon (or dismiss success as a one-shot deal).
 
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