Target marketing is nothing new. From their cleaning products to fast food to pick-up trucks, companies have been directing their advertising at certain segments of the population for ages. But when does target marketing cross the line from just good commerce into perpetuating stereotypes about certain groups in our society?
Aaron Foley, a Detroit-based writer for Jalopnik – Gawker Media’s popular blog on cars – had a post on the subject last Friday in which he wrote, “As a minority, it’s borderline insulting that automakers are over-thinking this.” He says that the auto manufacturers are particularly egregious offenders of using stereotypes to market their products to minorities. He joins us to elaborate.
In 2010, the Lansing Board of Water & Light (BWL) established its Plug-in Electric Vehicle Community Project. With funding from the U.S. department of Energy, the BWL installed an array of electric vehicle charging stations across the Lansing area to promote this emerging technology. Now, the utility is taking another step towards building an electric car infrastructure.
Ransom founded the Olds Motor Vehicle Company in Lansing in 1897. The company was bought by General Motors in 1908, which produced the Oldsmobile brand for 96 years. Ransom Olds continued to produce cars, however, under the name REO Motor Car Company.
The R.E. Olds transportation museum houses a diverse collection of Oldsmobiles dating from 1897 to 2004.
It also includes a wide array of auto and industrial history covering about a century, including a nearly complete collection of Michigan license plates, early traffic signs and a working 1950s-era traffic signal.
Bill Adcock is the Executive Director of the RE Olds Transportation Museum. He recently joined WKAR’s Peter Whorf for a tour of the museum.