Innovation Is Logical. Buying A New Car Is Not.

Nissan is “shifting” its brand advertising. The number three best selling Japanese car company wants to focus its message on innovation now. The first of the new “innovation” ads debuts Aug. 28 during the ESPN College Football Preview Show.

According to The New York Times, actor Robert Downey Jr. is the new voice-over announcer for the campaign.


There’s also a new tagline, “Innovation for All,” which is weak, particularly when put up against, “Shift” or “Drive.” For one, nothing under the sun is for “all,” and Nissan’s innovations are certainly not for “all.” They’re for specific drivers, drivers who like well-built low maintenance vehicles. Then there’s the word “innovation,” which isn’t exactly a strong driver, in fact, it smacks of inside the boardroom thinking (the kind that doesn’t resonate with consumers).

About David Burn

I wrote my first ad for a political candidate when I was 17 years old. She won her race and I felt the seductive power of advertising for the first time. Today—after working for seven agencies in five states—I am now head of brand strategy and creative direction at Bonehook in Portland, Oregon.