Earlier this month in our first drive of the 2015 MKC, we told you that Lincoln finally had a new vehicle in its arsenal worth crowing about. So with the compact premium crossover now finding its way into dealers, why aren't you seeing its likeness plastered on billboards and barraging you on television? It's because Lincoln is "holding some powder."
Those are the words of Lincoln's global director, Matt VanDyke, who tells Autoblog that the company is holstering some of its marketing guns because it's keen to avoid repeating the ill-timed efforts that blighted its last rollout, the MKZ. That vehicle's launch early last year was beset by various delays related to manufacturing and quality. The cadence issue was so dire that by the time the model reached showrooms in volume, Lincoln had already blown most of its budget on things like Super Bowl ads that ran weeks or even months before customers could check one out in person. It was a particularly trying series of events for parent Ford because the MKZ and its oversized marketing spend were charged with relaunching the Lincoln brand to the public.
Keen to avoid repeating the same timing issue and mindful of consumers' habits at this time of year, Lincoln is taking a different strategy with the MKC. According to VanDyke, "What we don't want to do is try and fight the summertime – people using television being down, and other mass media when school's out. New television shows aren't on." Of course, that doesn't mean Lincoln is sitting idle. VanDyke says, "By no means are we quiet during the next 90 days. This year, we're going to really spend the next 60 to 90 days using digital and social media, in-theater advertising and the like, and once we have full availability at dealerships, we'll really ramp up the advertising later on in the summer." Part of that early media effort includes immersive digital marketing like Lincoln's clever Dream Rides web experience.
So while you may not be seeing any 2015 Lincoln MKC commercials while you're watching your favorite primetime sitcom, know this: they're coming.