Audi and Conde Nast Renew “Never Follow” Marketing Campaign Honoring Innovators in Music, Film, Literature, and Sports

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April 14, 2004

Source: Audi of America

NEW YORK — Building on the overwhelming success of the 2003 Never Follow marketing campaign, Audi and Condé Nast are continuing their partnership with a multi-tiered communications program honoring innovators in the fields of music, film, literature and sports with cultural events in major U.S. markets.

Developed in conjunction with Audi’s advertising agency McKinney & Silver, the program honors rock legend David Bowie, actor William H. Macy, author Azar Nafisi, and athlete Freddy Adu, all living examples of Audi’s Never Follow brand philosophy. Condé Nast and Audi will create and implement individually designed programs from April to September of 2004 to highlight their stunning achievements. Another element to Audi’s integrated marketing program will be an exclusive sponsorship of “Sports: Breaking Records, Breaking Barriers,” a traveling exhibition that will premiere at the Smithsonian Institution’s National Museum of American History in October. Several athletes who embody the Audi Never Follow philosophy will be honored.

“Never Follow is our philosophy at Audi, it’s how we approach everything from design to production, and even includes our communications efforts,” said Mary Ann Wilson, Audi Media Connections Manager. “What better way to exhibit our Never Follow philosophy than by celebrating talented individuals who embrace a Never Follow approach through their own work. We look forward to building on the success of last year’s program and growing our partnership with Condé Nast.”

“The Audi Never Follow program was an enormous success in 2003. It makes all of us at Condé Nast extremely proud that a sophisticated partner like Audi is renewing such an ambitious project.” said Richard Beckman, executive vice president and chief marketing officer, Condé Nast Publications. “The broad scope of this program reflects Condé Nast’s unique expertise in executing multifaceted marketing initiatives that stretch across all entertainment mediums.”

Condé Nast and Audi have commissioned portraits of the first four honorees by noted photographer Mark Seliger, with creative developed by McKinney & Silver, which will be unveiled in two special inserts: an 8-page insert in May 2004 and 6-page insert in November 2004 issues of 11 Condé Nast, Fairchild and the Golf Digest Companies magazines. The magazines included in the program are Vogue, Architectural Digest, Vanity Fair, Bon Appétit, Condé Nast Traveler, House & Garden, Wired, Cargo, The New Yorker, Details and Golf Digest.

The 2004 Never Follow campaign launches on May 3 with a gala event in New York City honoring the careers of the four innovators via interactive Never Follow pavilions. David Bowie will highlight the evening with a special performance. Audi is the official sponsor of David Bowie’s 38-city “A Reality Tour,” which starts at the end of March.

Actor William H. Macy will be honored with a summer weekend of events celebrating his career in film. The weekend of programs will begin with a celebrity movie screening, and subsequent events will include charity screenings and a VIP reception with an “in conversation” event with the actor.

To honor Azar Nafisi, author of the critically acclaimed book “Reading Lolita in Tehran,” Audi will stage literary events in five U.S. markets. At each event, Nafisi will discuss her experience as a teacher in the Islamic Republic of Iran where she secretly gathered with her students to read forbidden western classics. The events will highlight her remarkable exploration of resilience in the face of tyranny and will celebrate the liberating power of literature.

On June 27th, Audi will honor Freddy Adu, Major League Soccer’s No. 1 draft pick in the 2004 SuperDraft and a member of D.C. United. The event, a soccer clinic, will provide local Washington D.C. children the chance to learn soccer moves from Freddy and enjoy a day to celebrate “the beautiful game” at RFK stadium. The afternoon will benefit Adu’s favorite charity, America Scores, the nations only after-school program offering children the opportunity to play soccer while teaching them how to express themselves through creative writing.

In October, Audi will be the exclusive national sponsor of the Smithsonian Institute’s traveling exhibition “Sports: Breaking Records, Breaking Barriers” and will select a group of athletes to be honored in the 6-page section appearing in November 2004 Advance Magazine Group titles. The special insert and exhibit will bring to life moments in sports history that have captivated the nation and embodied innovation as legendary athletes redefined the limits of human potential. After three months in Washington DC, the exhibit will travel to four additional Audi-sponsored markets in 2005.
For in-depth profiles of each innovator and updates on events, visit a multi-media experience at

About Audi

Audi of America is headquartered in Auburn Hills, Michigan, and markets a line of premium vehicles: the A4, A4 Cabriolet, A6, A8, TT and the allroad quattro. For more information about additional Audi-related events and corporate news, visit

About Advance Magazine Group

The Advance Magazine Group includes Condé Nast Publications, Fairchild Publications, Inc., The Golf Digest Companies, Parade, CondéNet, and Advance Magazine Group Shared Services.

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