AUBURN HILLS, MI: Volkswagen of America has chosen MWW Group to serve as its first-ever AOR. Last year, the carmaker brought in Kerri Martin, former marketing communications manager at BMW's Mini. VW then replaced long-time ad agency Arnold Worldwide with Crispin, Porter & Bogusky of Miami.
Jim Sanfilippo, senior industry analyst at automotive marketing consultancy AMCI, said hiring a PR agency could also be the direct influence of VW's relatively new US chief Adrian Hallmark.
"He's an advocate of a more active PR presence, having benefited from that during his tenure at Bentley," Sanfilippo said. "More active PR and a new agency [will make] VW marketing efforts more formidable."
VW reported May US sales rose greatly on consumer demand for the Jetta sedan. VW said it sold 22,100 vehicles last month - an increase of 35% from 16,297 in the same month a year ago.
Wes Brown, partner at Iceology, a consumer research and trend consultancy, said an upswing has been product-driven and is the result of a "great" marketing mix.
"They've gotten back on message," he said.