Prius: You Are What You Buy

The brands that we chose to buy, wear, use, drive — they all say something about who we are as people. If someone were to compile a list of brands from all of the T-shirts, shoes, plates, jewelry, makeup, and glasses that you own, they could say something about who you are, or, at the very least, who they perceive you to be based on these items; these items that you wear, drive, and smell like every single day.

Toyota took this understanding,  that we buy certain brands because we want them to speak for us, and applied it to their 2015 commercial. People want human connection, they want to be understood. Because we cannot explain every detail of ourselves, not unlike stereotypes, we use brands to summarize our beliefs, values and opinions for us; who we are at a glance.

It’s obvious that Prius is synonymous with Green, Eco-friendly, etc. Instead of saying how pro-environment this brand is, they show us through a useful example, suggesting an environmentally friendly way to do something as common and relatable as washing a car. Working with the pathos effect to appeal to consumers, the ad quickly centers on a young boy waiting on the rain to wash the car. Our hearts, as viewers, go out to this precious child, this idea of the next generation caring more about the environment — it implies that the future, as we often hear, is in sustainability; it implies that the future is Prius.

Prius: “There’s a way to do things, and a way to do things even better.”


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