When I was in 3rd grade, my best friend’s mother bought a Hummer. I was incredibly jealous. That boxy, beautiful car, with the giant grill and the military-inspired vibe. Was it a tank? Who knew?Who cared? The early-2000’s celebutante car of choice would now be my carpool ride back and forth between soccer practice. I contemplated how I got so lucky…
Looking back on this, I’m a bit mystified by myself. As much as I’d like to claim that this rethinking is environmentally motivated, I know that it’s much more related to the sudden Hummer trend-fall out. (Just the same, emissions were totally wack.) One day, Hummers were the coolest. The next, they were the worst. They captured how absolutely uncool the coolest things of the early 2000’s actually were. (Other cool-uncool zeitgeist-y things included: wearing your dress over a pair of jeans, floam, shrugs and Tara Reid.)
But why did Hummer fall from from grace? What flipped the company from awesome to terribly tacky? If you compare the Hummer to the Jeep brand, although both pay homage to military vehicles in terms of design and structure, Jeep was able to expand and evolve, while Hummer stayed stagnant. I’m curious as to what marketing tools Hummer employed. Who did the brand want to appeal to? How did they execute? And, most importantly, what can we learn from Hummer’s mistakes?
One lesson that I’ve learned is that when purchasing a car, or making any type of large, longterm investment, do your research before jumping on the trend bandwagon. On a smaller scale, compare it to painting your nails an exceptionally bright, of-the-moment color. After a few days of neon overdrive, you’ll start to question your earlier decision.