The global pandemic sent the world into self-isolation and governments asking citizens to stay home and off the streets. In the first few weeks of the outbreak there was a lot of resistance to adhering to the government’s guidelines.

As an essential service, car brands were allowed to stay open for service so there wasn’t an obligation to tell people to stay home other than being a good corporate citizen which Mazda is.


As brands began to take to the airwaves, there was a sea of sameness with similar language, sentiments, music and voiceovers being used. In an attempt to stand out we opted to use a metaphor to break through and appeal to people by reframing the conversation around staying home.


We asked drivers to “Let the roads sleep” as a way of telling them to obey social distancing. Then to reinforce this sentiment our message was paired with a powerful remake of “Stand by me”. The song’s message of support paired perfectly with tenor of the mood of the world at that time.


This campaign clearly stood out, attracting new drivers to the brand resulting in increased sales year over year during a time when the entire category was down.

The campaign was regarded as one of the brands that stood out during the early days of the pandemic in an IPSOS study.

Shot of a empty winding road through mountains and lake, sunrise.
Mazda Let The Roads Sleep Case Film rev

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2021 CMA

2021 CMA

Automotive / Brand Building