Grey Gives Tire Maker Humorous Push

NEW YORK Bridgestone Firestone North American Tire will run a monthlong promotional blitz starting in mid-September to promote its Dueler tires.

The effort, via Grey Worldwide, New York, features an offer of up to a $100 mail-in rebate with the purchase of up to four Dueler tires or certain comparable Firestones. The Nashville, Tenn.-based company will promote with full-page, full-color ads in USA Today on Sept. 16, plus radio and three new retail TV spots.

The humorous TV commercials show people who desperately need new tires. One woman parks her SUV on a steep hill, engages the emergency brake, and walks away in time to see the vehicle slide down the hill and crash into a parked car, presumably because the tires are too slick to grip.

Another spot uses the “Wheels Goes Round” theme and shows flamenco dancers, a campaign the company launched last year. “Passion for excellence” is the tagline.

Bridgestone Firestone North American Tire spent $53 million last year on ads and $33 million through June 2005, per Nielsen Monitor-Plus.