Scion DIY Logos
In a desperate effort to sharpen the dulling edges of Scions "edgy, youth-oriented brand," Toyota is offering fans a website ( scionspeak.com) where they can channel their youthful enthusiasm towards designing individual logos for their sweet rides. The New York Times reports that Scion owners can build a logo from hundreds of symbols designed by a professional graffiti artist, download them and have them made into window decals or airbrush templates. Whether the middle-aged-and-up folks who occupy most of the Scions I see on the street even know that there is such thing as a "professional graffiti artist" or will use this website remains very much to be seen. The real point of this exercise is to keep the myth of Scion-as-youth-brand alive… among those who already own one. The campaign is not aimed at actually reversing Scion's sagging sales, but "reducing Scion's investment on conquering new customers and increasing the passion for the brand among its core fan base," according to the company running the campaign. We bet they'd do better by offering a special ramp so your youthful Rascal Mobility Scooter can drive out of the back of your xB.
When the xA and xB first came out my (late 50s, Boomer) parents tried to test drive them, only to be told by the Scion salesmen that they were too old to drive Scions.
Let me be clear: I'm 25 years old and I like Scions alot, particularly the first generation. Then again, so does my Dad, and he's as boomer as they come. My point isn't that kids don't like Scions, it's that Scions offer vehicles which could have much wider appeal if they weren't so fixated on appearing edgy. The Honda Fit sells to young hipsters and Grandmas alike without what I'll call "professional graffiti artist histrionics." How would selling a range of Yaris variants hurt the Toyota image and visa-versa?
Honestly, Toyota's marketing scheme is, in theory, genious. Trying to make a 50-year-old who doesn't get on the internet ANYWAY feel like the car he wants isn't for him, though, is a bit hard to do. They tried with the lack-of TV marketing, and it didn't work. Now they try with this Deviant BS, and it doesn't work. I don't know what side of the fence I sit on; for Toyota, it makes perfect sense to want ONLY young, "cool" kids to get Scions, so of course, Dad and Mom can't be interested, by (at least US) social nature. On the other hand, you have a line of cool, unique cars that appeal to everyone for different reasons... Being 22, I bought my Scion because it was cheap, gets great gas mileage, is fun yet comfortable enough for city and road trips, and last, it actually looks nice (which is something econo-cars usually don't get). Unlike the marketed "kid," I guess, I actually encouraged my mother to buy one before I got mine. It's a great car for many people, especially those of us who only have 1 passenger at any given time. We have two xAs in our garage, yet it doesn't bother ME.. But again, the market for these cars are the same people trying to avoid what Mommy and Daddy bought - fortunately for the others of us, we like to take lessons from Mommy and Daddy every once in a while (read: if Mommy or Daddy buy it, there MIGHT just be a good reason!!) Johnson: (For the record, if the above didn't clarify, I fully agree with what you are saying) If Toyota wants older people to buy Toyotas, yet older people are liking the Scion thing, why not jazz the U.S. Toyota subccompacts a bit? They are spewing left and right in Japan, yet we get the 2-door Yaris with the "if-i-shoot-myself-it-will-be-easy-to-lean" ugly crapola plastic interiors.. browsing online, the Japanese Yaris' come fitted to compete with luxury cars, and for a decent price. Maybe instead of tossing all subcompacts to Scion and trying to Push people away, they should try and Pull them back over to Toyota with more of what they are looking to get.