New Honda ads: Fix your airbags


As we’ve heard on many different occasions, one of the biggest problem with recalls is getting people to actually report to the dealership to have repairs done. This is particularly important in cases where the recalled part can cause some very serious harm. To combat this tendency – you might even call it neglectfulness – on the part of owners, Honda is turning to advertising.

The company is launching a multi-million-dollar ad campaign targeting owners of vehicles affected by the Takata airbag recall and asking them to report in to have a replacement inflator installed.

Honda hopes that this new consumer information campaign will bolster our existing and continuing efforts to reach our customers and maximize the vehicle repair completion rates associated with recalls to replace Takata airbag inflators,” Honda’s John Mendel said in the attached statement. “These ads are a strong call to action from our company designed to break through the clutter, grab the attention of customers driving affected vehicles, and urge that they get required repairs as soon as possible.”

The campaign will kick off March 16 with full-page color ads in over 120 newspapers and 30-second radio spots in 110 markets. Because it’s 2015, the company will also use sponsored Facebook posts “that mention the specific vehicle owned by each identified user.” Yep, here’s the future.

Honda’s ads will largely be focused in the 11 high-humidity states and territories (Alabama, California, Florida, Georgia, Hawaii, Louisiana, Mississippi, South Carolina, Texas, Puerto Rico and the US Virgin Islands) most affected by the Takatarecall. Several of the states were part of the initial National Highway Traffic Safety Administration investigation, like Florida, Hawaii, the USVI and Puerto Rico.

“The goals of this campaign is to save lives and prevent injuries,” Mendel added. This campaign will be worth watching, not only because they deliver an important message, but they could set a precedent for the handling of future major recalls.


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