Introducing “Throwback Thursday” (#TBT), a monthly feature in which we take a look back and highlight some of our favorite automotive ad campaigns.
For our first #TBT, we bring you the classic 2003 Mitsubishi Eclipse commercial featuring the song “Days Go By” by Dirty Vegas (@WeAreDirtyVegas). The TV spot grabbed viewers’ attention in early 2002 with the catchy song and trendy dance moves from the passenger in the front seat, Dusty Paik (@knuckledusters) and spurred an infamous parody on Chappelle’s Show. In the commercial, the man driving the Eclipse is Kelvin Parker (@kelvindelaine06). “Days Go By” went on to win the 2003 Grammy Award for Best Dance Recording.
With its ad agency, Deutsch Inc., Mitsubishi Motors connected with its target audience by pairing fun, upbeat music with its ad campaigns. In the face of stiff competition from its rivals, these ads were the catalyst for an upswing for Mitsubishi Motors. In three years, brand awareness grew from 44 percent to 60 percent, and sales increased 70 percent.
The campaign also brought attention to British trio Dirty Vegas. As reported in an interview on MTV.com, back in 2002, a Mitsubishi executive saw the video for “Days Go By” while in Europe and immediately decided to seek out Paul Harris, Steve Smith and Ben Harris, who comprised Dirty Vegas.
“In America, with your segregation of radio stations, you can’t get your music to a massive audience at once,” Harris told MTV.com after Mitsubishi licensed the song. “Everybody watches TV, and the advertisement gets every sort of person in one hit.”
Back in 2011, Forbes voted “Days Go By” number 3 on their “Ten Best Songs in Car Commercials”. Eminem’s “Lose Yourself” for Chrysler came in at number 1.
Grammy Award-winning, Dirty Vegas also happens to be a favorite here at Tier10. The group’s song “Today”, from their “Electric Love” album, was featured when Tier10 launched the 2012 Honda Civic “Heritage” campaign in June of 2011. The video for that campaign, reached over 75,000 views on YouTube in under 3 weeks, embedded on over 45,000 websites and was shared on Facebook over 1,500 times.
This has to make you ask, “What if the Mitsubishi Eclipse commercial was released today?” In the decade since that campaign launched, the internet has changed dramatically and holds a lot more influence over popular media, especially favoring video.
Back in 2002, the founders of YouTube hadn’t even begun work on the site (that would start in 2005). Today, 72 hours of video are uploaded every minute and 500 years worth of YouTube videos are watched every day on Facebook (over 4 billion hours of video are watched each month on YouTube with over 100 million people taking a social action on YouTube (likes, shares, comments, etc) every week)