Move over to Austin Rover
Austin Rover had a fair bit of new metal to crow about back in 1982. The post-launch euphoria of the Metro had yet to die off and ‘Move over to Austin Rover’ seemed like a good way of promoting the newly-introduced follow-on models. The actor, and former Cowley Apprentice, Patrick Mower was drafted in to sell the Mini-E models, Ambassador, Ital, Acclaim and revised Rover SD1 in an advert that managed to sell the facelifted cars’ best assets.
However, with the Maestro and Montego on their way, it was as much about keeping the interest up during some very hard times and, to give the cars their due, they did manage to sustain sales during a very tough few months of selling. Was it the right kind of advertising campaign? To sell cars seriously, probably not. But to rally the troops, get customers in to dealers, and keep BL’s model range in the public eye… it could have been worse.
Ian Elliott, former Public Relations Officer for Austin Rover and BL, said: ‘ARG Advertising wasn’t subjective. We had some pretty heavyweight research activities going on (e.g. CATS – Continuous Advertising Tracking Survey, a collaborative scheme involving other manufacturers) which analysed the effect of advertising on public opinion, sales rates etc. The consensus in those days was that we had a bigger problem with corporate image (strikes and so on) than we had with individual model images, so some ‘range advertising’ was considered desirable and indeed effective. We also had research that proved that if we got people to take test drives, then we got good sales conversion rates – another reason for ads aimed at getting people into dealerships rather than promoting individual models.’
And let’s face it, this makes a great tagline for the site!