By Kim Yon-se
Hyundai Motor will prioritise upgrading its brand image across the globe, shifting from its earlier business focus of expanding market share overseas.
On Tuesday, the world's fifth-largest automaker revealed its ambition to cultivate brand power approaching the level of top global brands such as BMW and Mercedes-Benz.
"Hyundai Motor has been successful in selling many cars. But the performance in brand power is lagging behind in the overseas markets," company executive director Cho Won-hong (right) said in a statement.
"So we have decided to put more investment in improving the brand image," he said.
He argued that "the image of premium cannot be seen at dealerships of General Motors or Ford Motor."
Though Hyundai Motor is also an automotive brand for mass production for ordinary consumers, it has the goal of attaining a premium image, he said.
But the company clarified it would not introduce a premium brand benchmarking Toyota Motor's Lexus or Nissan's Infiniti for the time being.
"As we are posting thriving sales of the Genesis and Equus sedans, there is no necessity to have a premium brand," Hyundai Motor executive Lee Dong-joo said.
Instead, Hyundai Motor plans to pour huge investment into advertising to notify global consumers of its product quality-oriented management policy.
It is fronting a new advertising campaign dubbed "Live Brilliant" to create close brand relationships in foreign markets.
A coordinated series of TV commercials and print advertisements will be published across North America, Europe, Africa, and Asia starting April, portraying Hyundai as a common brand for modern family life.
Company executives said the company aims to be recognized as a brand that creates new values for owners, not just a vehicle manufacturer.
Its time for Hyundai to brainstorm for a new set of strategies to achieve that goal, they said.
There will be four 30 or 60-second television commercials. The campaign will be Hyundai's first launched globally.
Hyundai Motor was the world's 61st most popular brand with an estimated brand value of $6 billion, brand consulting firm Interbrand said in its 2011 report.
The report, in addition, showed the brand value of Hyundai jumped 19 per cent compared to the year earlier. In the 2010 list, Hyundai's brand value was rated at around US$5 billion (S$6.3 billion), at 65th place.
The carmaker last January launched an advertising campaign called "New Thinking, New Possibilities," aimed at increasing Hyundai's brand recognition.