For their first rebranding effort in 40 years, Meineke has enlisted the help of YouTube sensation Robby Novak, better known as “Kid President.” Novak is cast as Meineke’s “Kid Mechanic” for the new campaign “Drive A Little Smarter,” developed by Pitch, which features television spots, outdoor, print and digital marketing. But the rebranding doesn’t stop there, extending even to a new logo and uniforms.

The short TV spots — “Transmission,” “Oil Change” and “General Car Care” — are simple yet effective (and propelled by music from a certain Devo member).  “Drive A Little Smarter” (which also functions as Meineke’s new tagline) seeks to educate customers on how short-term maintenance can prevent long-term issues (and thus save you money). They seem to be built around Novak’s natural charm and funny facial expressions, with an almost off-the-cuff feel. Banking on Novak’s charm and familiarity seems like a pretty safe bet, after all this is a kid who has tacked up over 20 million YouTube views. Novak doesn’t stray far from the humorous optimism he perfected with his viral YouTube work for SoulPancake, and his familiarity should work to Meineke’s advantage, keeping TV viewers in the room when they recognize “Kid President.” Child actors can go from charming to annoying pretty quickly, but it’s hard to imagine anyone hating on the winsome “Kid Mechanic.” I’m sure the comments section will prove me wrong, though. Credits and second video after the jump.  Read more