The Brand That Bites Back

Mercedes-Benz coming out of red fog with the text "the brand that bites back"
Photography and editing by Lia Esposito

Mercedes-Benz Immortal Love

Are vampires coming back? Between Robert Pattinson’s latest fight club-esque GQ shoot and Mercedes-Benz’s latest campaign, it seems like you might want to rewatch Twilight. Although I think of car companies having a monopoly on the Fourth of July, Memorial Day and Christmas, Mercedes-Benz made a statement for Valentine’s Day this year. Fit for Shakespeare himself, Mercedes-Benz put a spin on the classic love story of Romeo and Juliet as vampires with its new campaign: “Immortal Love.”



The campaign is the latest attempt to reinvent Mercedes-Benz as a trendy yet timeless luxury. The concept was built around the idea that 80% of G-Class models remain on the roads today since debuting in 1979. The eight-minute short film is the next “All Too Well” styled take on romantic branded storytelling. The ad was created by Berlin Agency Antoni and follows the story of a reimagined Romeo and Juliet. The portrayal of Juliet is a pop star with a vampire double-life while Romeo is a naive mortal, in awe of her glamorous life. The film begins with a homemade-style video with the two characters declaring that nothing lasts forever. Then the video shifts to a futuristic, dystopian concert, where he tries to see her, and they are quickly reminded that they cannot be together. They then leave the venue in G-Class luxury cars. He tries to understand why they cannot be together in an argument and discovers that she is hiding her birthday from him. She maneuvers the car in the woods as she decides that she will bring him to the party to lose the convoy of various colored G-Class Mercedes. They get out of the car, and she starts to tell Romeo part of who she is. They then arrive at the party, and she tells him to stay close to her. The cinematography makes the party seem almost euphoric and stylistically reminds me of the Capital citizens from the Hunger Games. She blows out the 463 candles on her cake, and Romeo is nearly bit by another vampire partygoer, but Juliet swooped in to save him. At this moment, they decide for their love to be eternal; she bites him, turning him into a vampire. They leave the party in their G-Class Mercedes, and the following text appears: “For those who live forever: The Immortal G-Class #StrongerThanTime.”

Along with the film, the campaign will include social media ads featuring images of G-Class cars alongside vampires.

Mercedes-Benz Instagram
Mercedes-Benz Instagram
Mercedes-Benz Instagram

If I were an immortal vampire, Mercedes-Benz would have all my money, and I would have a G-Wagon; that is precisely what Mercedes-Benz was trying to accomplish. The brand has struggled to redefine its image to appeal to a younger demographic. “Stereotypically being a ‘stuffy,’ ‘old- fashioned’ brand, Mercedes-Benz managed to reduce the average age of their customers from 57 to 46 years old through a range of marketing strategies,” according to a case study of the Mercedes-Benz US market. When you think of the primary audience segments for the Mercedes-Benz brand, there are two essential publics: middle-aged people above 40 and 25 to 40-year-olds. The study explained that “young people aged from 25-40 are increasingly essential markets as some have high purchasing power while others can influence the decisions of their friends and families.” This ad campaign plays into this demographic, appealing to this glamorous lifestyle and romantic storyline.



I love this campaign for the many reasons that drove me to make the artistic choices I did for my own Mercedes-Benz campaign. In MEJO 334: Presentation Design, we were challenged to create a 30-second ad spot for a brand of our choice. We could use stock videos, footage we shot ourselves or a combination thereof. This project taught me the power of an idea, iPhone, tripod and freshly washed luxury car. The “Bet on Mercedes-Benz” campaign centered around luxury and power by recognizing the roots from which the car industry originated and how far they have come. The black and white pays homage to the sophisticated brand and symbolizes the industry’s past; the colorized choices are supposed to symbolize coming into the modern era. From the dramatic violins, quick cuts, and text that all refer back to horses somehow, the video is meant to present Mercedes-Benz as a consumer’s best “bet” when choosing their next driving experience. Horses may not be vampires, but I saw some similarities with the transitions, uses of color and tone of the text. As Mercedes-Benz had to disclose that the ad had been “filmed with professional drivers on a closed road,” I had to disclose to my Grandma, the car’s owner, that I sped everything up in post-production.

More About The Author

Lia Esposito is a senior at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill pursuing a degree in Media and Journalism concentrating in Advertising and Public Relations with an English Minor. She is currently a social media strategist in the fintech industry.

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