Since dropping what was then EuroRSCG and taking its advertising in-house with agency Spark44 two years ago, Jaguar has been on a quest to introduce its brand of luxury cars to a younger audience. After all, selling cars to old dying guys who first fell in love with Jags after seeing one in a 60s spy movie probably wasn’t the best strategy for sustained profitability.
With the “Alive” campaign, Spark44 brought Jaguar back to TV for the first time in years, giving the brand a new shiny feel that mixed technology prowess with a hint of luxurious bad-assery. Due to this re-branding, it’s kind of a shock that that Jaguar is now employing dead-eyed indie songstress Lana Del Rey for the above spot/music video, “Burning Desire.” Best known for becoming a Saturday Night Live laughing stock and getting naked on the cover of GQ, Del Rey has come to symbolize the definition of beauty-minus-substance for pop culture writers worldwide. That said, the rumor mill also declared Del Rey as the front-runner for contributing the theme song to the latest James Bond installment, Skyfall, before Adele got the honor. Perhaps Jaguar is attempting to correct what some critics considered a bit of a mistake.
Despite the accusations of not being “indie enough” and having her entire persona be a result of music industry manufacturing, Del Rey has always been a remarkable singer, and she proves it in “Burning Desire.” However, the over 3-minute music video suffers from aggressive cheesiness. The cheese-factor as been an integral to Del Rey’s mainstream success, which has spawned a “love her or hate her” reception. Still, it might not be something a brand like Jaguar, which is still on the hunt to prove its relevance to a new generation, wants to align with. Then again, does Jaguar really want to impress its target demo with substantive features, or is this proof that the brand is still using a “sex sells” approach to its marketing?