Like what you see?

Stay on top of the latest marketing news by subscribing to our monthly newsletter.

Celebrating Five Decades of Remanufacturing

Caterpillar is a global leader when it comes to manufacturing heavy equipment for the industries that keep our society going strong. It’s also one of the world’s leading remanufacturers.

Caterpillar’s remanufacturing division, Cat® Reman, first set up shop in 1973. In the 50 years since, the team has offered customers quality equipment parts designed to perform like new. They operate as drop-in solutions available for a fraction-of-new price when customers return used core (AKA worn parts). By helping save time and money on parts replacements, Cat Reman products have a broad appeal to customers all over the globe.

Plus, Cat Reman offers impressive sustainability benefits, with its remanufacturing process recycling millions of pounds of metals annually through its remanufacturing process.1 It’s part of a global supply chain made possible by generations of collaboration between Caterpillar employees, Cat dealers and Cat customers.

As Cat Reman approached its golden anniversary, Caterpillar came to us to help kick off the celebration.

Marking a Milestone

The objective? Raise awareness around the 50th anniversary with bold, impactful messaging and visuals. By speaking to the resilience of the product line, Caterpillar expected an increase in global sales and Cat Reman-related engagement throughout the Cat dealer network.

So, Simantel suggested a celebratory tone that aligned with Caterpillar’s voice –– resonating with new and loyal customers while elevating the successes of the 50-year Cat Reman story. This tone was anchored by a position statement that communicated one of Cat Reman’s primary benefits (like new performance) and its lasting value —


This statement helped inspire the rest of the content. It was all spearheaded by an awareness concept that directly addressed the key relationship at the core of Cat Reman –– the connection between customers and Cat dealers.

In many cases, the customer-dealer connection is more than a working relationship. It’s a partnership that lasts beyond the next transaction. Dealer reps are keenly aware of their customers’ needs and, in turn, customers rely on their dealers for help finding equipment and parts, completing repairs, returning their used core for credit toward Cat Reman purchases, and keeping their business going strong.

Sure, there are phone calls and site visits, but there are also birthdays and social gatherings. These friendships last from season to season, spanning careers and lifetimes. And that’s the story told by this campaign’s primary awareness video.

Paying Tribute to a Lasting Relationship

“50 Years of Friendship” tells the story of Dave and Joe, two childhood friends who’ve supported each other through thick and thin — in play, in business and in retirement.

Tied together by voice-over narration, “50 Years of Friendship” seamlessly communicates the passage of time, the long-term connection of individuals bonded over a common cause and the lasting value of Cat Reman.

We created a full-length version and cutdowns focusing on specific moments and messages. They range from nearly two-minute to 15-second runtimes for various media placements.

Bringing the Talent Together

When putting this project together, the team faced a key challenge: Find two sets of actors who could believably play the young, mid-career and older versions of these characters.

With over 500 casting submissions, Simantel considered multiple pairings of performers before finding a winning team. These choices highlighted the diversity and lived experiences found within the Cat Reman customer base –– for kids in the 1970s, mid-career professionals in the 1990s and retirees in the present.

Celebrating Five Decades of Remanufacturing

During several weeks of pre-production, a two-day shoot in Waxahachie, Texas and several weeks of post-production, Simantel worked closely with Retriever, a Chicago-based production company.

Retriever helped direct and visualize the story. They also collaborated with Simantel and the Cat Reman marketing team to make sure storytelling objectives were met and marketing goals were in alignment.

Celebrating Five Decades of Remanufacturing

Connecting it to the Larger Campaign

Positioned at the top of the 50th anniversary landing page, “50 Years of Friendship” complemented the other campaign assets. Translated into 27 languages for a global audience, it’s an example of the Cat Reman team’s focus on accessibility. The landing page has since been retitled as, “The Cat Reman Journey.” This approach pairs the content created for the 50th anniversary with more evergreen messaging, making the page a lasting fixture in the Cat Reman web experience.

Celebrating Five Decades of RemanufacturingOther campaign assets included heroic montages featuring collages of customers, equipment and industries to highlight the global reach of Cat Reman. Created with the help of digital artist Mike Campau, this striking imagery serves as a foundation for the campaign’s look and feel, going beyond Caterpillar’s standard yellow, white and black color schemes. Here, soft colors help to humanize the subjects, with each montage depicting a different region served by Cat Reman.

Additionally, consideration videos detailed the 50-year timeline of the program (animated and produced by Atlanta-based Present Company) and hype up the product line from the perspective of a used engine remanufactured to perform like new (produced by Retriever). Articles, product-line solutions and a dealer contact form rounded out the web experience, offering touchpoints and takeaways for new and old customers alike.

Simantel created additional assets for media and for use throughout the global Cat dealer network. This Cat dealer toolkit included display web banners, a poster, window cling, floor graphic, monitor graphic for desktops, laptops and tablets, and a celebratory Teams background.

Plus, a 25-post social library was created for dealers to cover a variety of subjects on their social channels, with product-line facts, stories, video segments, giveaway opportunities and quotes from the people who keep Cat Reman going.

Celebrating Five Decades of Remanufacturing

The Results

The main goal of this awareness campaign was to introduce the Cat Reman product line to new customers while reminding current customers of the remanufactured solutions at their disposal. With organic and paid social media placements running from March 2023 until February 2024, “50 Years of Friendship” video content helped foster a lasting connection between the brand and its target audience.

Through Randall Reilly, “50 Years of Friendship” saw a 7.84% clickthrough rate (CTR), outpacing the next closest CTR for Randall Reilly social content by over 3%. Since launch, paid Facebook ads for the 50th anniversary campaign have reached 10 million impressions with a 1.38% CTR. Meanwhile, related organic Facebook posts have seen over 230,000 impressions, over 2,000 reactions, 110 comments and 369 shares.

Across the board, the Cat Reman 50th anniversary campaign has garnered around 15.8 million impressions and 15,300 trackable web sessions, with users spending an average time of 2:50 on webpages. Positive responses have been noted throughout the enterprise, via online dealer form submissions, in-person interactions at Cat dealerships and beyond.

Celebrating Five Decades of Remanufacturing

Winning Awards

“50 Years of Friendship” caught the attention of industry professionals as well, winning two creative awards.

Platinum Viddy AwardThe video earned a Platinum Viddy Award for branded content at the 28th annual video competition administered and judged by the Association of Marketing and Communication Professionals (AMCP).



The Creative Excellence Awards

It also received a 2023 Creative Excellence Award based on the ratings of some of the best creative directors, graphic designers, developers and industry leaders.




Now, what do you think of the video? Check it out for yourself here.


1. Determined by figures representing U.S. environmental impacts comparing “gate-to-gate” remanufacturing and manufacturing processes for engines and components. Based on 2018 external study of Cat engines, alternators and turbochargers. Does not include impacts elsewhere in our value chain.

Share This Page
463 / 467

Leave a Reply

Required fields are marked