Kia Launches Optima Push Featuring NBA’s Blake Griffin

The carmaker’s latest marketing campaign includes a series of four new TVCs featuring brand ambassador and NBA All-Star, Blake Griffin

Automotive giant Kia has rolled out a latest advertising push which includes four new television commercials featuring Blake Griffin and the NBA star’s signature brand of satirical comedy. Set to depict people getting into the zone to experience the all-new 2016 Optima, the variant is being marketed as the Official Vehicle of the NBA.

The creative outline of the ads portrays a calm Griffin reading the newspaper, playing chess, making a peanut butter and jelly sandwich, or acting as a weather forecaster amidst an impressive basketball performance. The campaign which includes television, digital as well as social media elements will debut during the Kia NBA Tip-Off 2015.

Created by David&Goliath, Kia’s advertising agency of record, the aforementioned spots can be viewed via cable and network NBA programming as well as across all of the carmaker’s social and digital platforms including YouTube and Kia’s official website.

The athlete’s comedic talent and deadpan delivery have made a connection with Optima buyers and basketball fans over several NBA seasons. The brand’s partnership with the basketballer was born in 2011 following his famous ‘dunk over an Optima’ moment to win the Slam Dunk contest.

As brand ambassador, he helped grow the brand’s presence in basketball and pop culture through national marketing campaigns, commercials, and social media. During the 2012-13 NBA season, his ads offered helpful suggestions to younger versions of himself as Kia’s available UVO voice-activated infotainment system1 took his futuristic Optima on a time-traveling musical journey through the mid-1990s and early 2000s.

The following season, he and funny-man Jack McBrayer combated crime as a dynamic duo in The Griffin Force, saving the world one Kia Optima at a time. For the 2014-15 NBA season, he was cast in the lead role for several big-budget action movies set in the Old West, ancient Rome, and an aircraft carrier, each time replacing his scripted mode of transportation—be it horse, chariot or fighter jet—with a Kia Optima.

“Our partnership with Blake has played a significant role in Kia becoming the most recognized automotive brand among basketball fans across the country, and in this new campaign he’s back and better than ever with his distinctive deadpan humour,” said Tim Chaney, VP of Marketing Communications of Kia Motors America.