Arts & Entertainment
LGBT Chevy ad goes viral
"Liked" by George Takei
By Benjamin Jenkins
Originally printed 6/7/2012 (Issue 2023 - Between The Lines News)
Chevrolet Volt's full page ad in Between The Lines' June Pride issue has taken the blogosphere and social networks by storm, receiving praise from LGBT and automobile bloggers, gay press and even George Takei.
The advertisement features a silver 2012 Chevrolet Volt "coming out" to a Tahoe and Cruze - or "parents, - and announcing "Mom, Dad, I'm electric." Below, the ad explains, "Volt runs on an electric battery and a gas generator. So, whatever revs your engine, we support you 100%. Happy Motor City Pride from the entire Chevrolet family."
This clever ad both acknowledges LGBT shoppers' eco-friendly purchasing habits and draws parallels between the marginalization of electric automobiles and the LGBT community.
Within 24 hours, the ad emerged on numerous websites commended as Chevrolet's official coming out for the LGBT community.
Amir Iliaifar, blogger for DigitalTrends.com, wrote, "When a car company comes along in open support of a polarizing subject like homosexuality -- as General Motors did with its lighthearted Chevrolet Volt ad -- it warrants a degree of respect and acknowledgment."
Currently, the ad can be seen Green.AutoBlog.com, DigitalTrends.com, GayNow.com, the MiamiHerald.com and the Huffington Post.
On June 11, Star Trek actor and LGBT activist George Takei even shared the ad with his over 2 million fans punning, "Watt's right with this?"
While Chevy's new Volt ad has been deemed by many to be the company's "coming out" as LGBT friendly, the ad is not General Motors' first expression of pro-LGBT sentiment. The company achieved the top rating of 100 percent in the Human Rights Campaign's 2011 Corporate Equality Index and was included on the foundation's "Best Places to work for LGBT Equality" list. The company also created its own "It Gets Better" video for the Trevor Project.
"We were thrilled to see the agency develop an idea that was not only clever and memorable but one that also resonated with the lgbt community," explains Adam Bernard, Chair of GM Plus (People Like US), the company's LGBT affinity group.
Given the great success of the ad both at Motor City Pride and within the blogosphere/social network, it is likely the Volt ad will emerge at other pride celebrations as well.
"The ad has exceeded our expectations to say the least," says Chevrolet Small Car and Volt Marketing Directory Cristi Landi. "We plan to leverage the ad in various ways at a few key pride celebrations around the U.S. We will continue to look for ways to incorporate the overwhelmingly positive reacion to the message."
Richard Read, blogger for The Car Connection, wrote "Chevrolet has managed to find an interesting parallel between one of its 'outsider' products and a population that, in some ways, still resides on the margins of society. That's not just clever, but it makes for good advertising."