Exiting Tesla exec suggests spending 1% of revenue on advertising


Exiting Tesla exec suggests spending 1% of revenue on advertising

Tesla’s former head of investor relations suggests that the automaker should 1% of its revenue on advertising to expand brand awareness.

For years, Tesla CEO Elon Musk has famously said that he despises advertising. He said that Tesla doesn’t pay or provide discounts for celebrities to drive its cars and that the automaker doesn’t pay to advertise – though we have seen exceptions before.

Tesla fans and investors have often suggested that the company at least try it, but the CEO consistently pushed back against the idea – going as far as saying that he “hates” advertising.

But interestingly, things started to change after Musk bought Twitter, which is reliant on advertising.

A few months after Musk acquired Twitter, Tesla held its annual shareholders meeting and the CEO was asked about Tesla starting to advertise.

Musk even pointed out the irony of the situation:

“It’s indeed ironic. Twitter is highly dependent on advertising. Hear I am, never really used advertising before and now I have a company that is highly dependent on advertising. I guess I should say that advertising is awesome and everyone should do it.”

The CEO then announced that Tesla would indeed start to advertise.

Many suspected that this would be a way for Musk to transfer more money from Tesla to Twitter. As we previously reported, Tesla has already started to pay for over a dozen premium accounts on Twitter.

Last year, Tesla did start advertising with some targeted ads on Google, but it stayed away from Twitter, now X, for a few months.

In February, we reported that Tesla started advertising on Youtube, Meta platforms, and on Musk’s X.

However, the effort was short-lived. Tesla stopped its advertising, and Musk complained that Tesla’s ads were “too generic”.

Nonetheless, Tesla pulled off its arguably best advertising effort yet, but it was for Musk’s compensation package rather than Tesla’s actual products.

Now, Martin Viecha, an exiting Tesla executive who led the company’s investor relations department for years, put suggested that Tesla should do more advertising:

Musk had signaled that Tesla might go back to wider-scale advertising, but the plan is still unclear.

1% of Tesla’s revenue would be a quarterly advertising budget of over $200 million.

Electrek’s Take

You can do a lot with $200 million in advertising. There’s still a lot to be done for EV awareness and that could go a long way.

Tesla could do some specific advertising for its vehicles. I don’t think enough people know that you can lease a Model 3 for $299 a month, but the automaker could also get into more broader EV education.

As the biggest EV brand out there, Tesla would benefit the most from it, and it would have a great impact on the industry and the mission, in my opinion.

I don’t know if Viecha was pushing this internally before leaving last week or if he is just now communicating it after leaving, but I wish Elon would consider it.

Put the same team that did the compensation ads on this.

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