Honda Motorcycle New Ad Campaign 2023 | Hit or Miss?

So Honda Motorcycles have just released their latest marketing campaign for 2023 with the intention of enticing new and young riders to the fold…but does it work and is it relatable.

The campaign leads with: ‘Without You, It’s Just a Road’…

Now this is not a critical analysis of the production value of the short film itself but rather the message and the style.

Firstly from a English speaking native, the bio and the script doesn’t seem to be quite right. It does read and sound as if it were written by someone from Sweden. There is warmth to it but it’s just a little clunky and metronomic.

Honda continues with the following: ‘The road. A place where dreams are made reality. Travel on two wheels enriches life building stories of people, place and experience. And, whether you ride for adrenaline, adventure, fun or simply to get to work, we share the road with you. You have a home with Honda’

This does smack a little of a famous American motorcycle brand’s marketing style too but the message is all important here, but I question whether it is falling on deaf young ears.

Without the rider, the road isn’t just a road though is it? It’s full of cars, trucks and bicycles…and people. If you ride where I ride in the early hours of the morning or late into the night…there are many other things on the road too.

In all seriousness, the campaign is highlighting the relationship between the rider and the path less travelled. The journey and the adventure. One without the other just doesn’t work, but when forced into a symbiotic relationship…well a zen nation we can all join!

If this is supposed to attract young riders or new older riders, then where is the upbeat message or the variety of products. They focused on just a limited line of bikes but really there should’ve been more that young riders especially would identify with. Less soul searching but a lot more fun, entertainment and excitement in a language that young people will understand.

My advice to future ad executives would be to invite younger people, even teenagers to act as a sounding board. To see if any of these messages are hitting home. I can almost guarantee that most would be lost in the translation so a lot more work would need to be done.

It really should say…’It’s Just a Road…and it needs YOU!

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