Automakers' Latest Use of Online Ads: For Lobbying

The Alliance of Automobile Manufacturers, a trade group whose members include Ford, GM, DaimlerChrysler, Toyota and VW, is heading online to find lawmakers and policy influencers this legislative session. Besides the efforts detailed in NYTimes.com (reg. req.) today, the group is also taking to blogs.

The message: don't regulate us; we're selling plenty of alternative fuel vehicles already. The media: a Web site at discoveralternatives.org and ads on Powerline Blog, Andrew Sullivan, Red State, Daily Kos, Wonkette, Political Animal and Talking Points Memo. The agency: Mindshare Interactive Campaigns out of D.C.

The effort will continue to run throughout the legislative session with more elements rolling out over time, Charles Territo, director of communications for the Alliance, told me.

We've seen GM use online to push its alternative fuel message in the past. Interesting to see the whole industry adopt the medium -- and blogs -- to reach such a specific audience. When is ExxonMobile going to try to improve its image by using the Web?