By Andrew Ganz
Sunday, Jul 29th, 2012 @ 10:09 pm
 
General Motors confirmed this afternoon the abrupt departure of its chief marketing officer, Joel Ewanick.

The automaker released only a vague statement confirming that, effective immediately, Ewanick is no longer with GM. Other reports have indicated that Ewanick's departure was not of his own choosing.

GM hired Ewanick in mid-2010 as part of CEO Dan Akerson's attempt to turn around the then-fresh from bankruptcy automaker. Ewanick, who came to GM from Nissan, was considered an impressive grab for the Michigan automaker.



As recently as a few weeks ago, the Wall Street Journal reported that Ewanick was considered by Akerson to be doing "a good job" at GM, although the executive readily acknowledged that some of his moves in Detroit were polarizing. Among other things, Ewanick consolidated the number of outside agencies GM uses for its branding, marketing and advertising and he introduced the "Chevy Runs Deep" ad campaign.

It's unclear just what spurred the abrupt ouster, although Ewanick's bold moves included pulling advertising from several high profile places including Facebook and the 2013 Super Bowl. While the decisions grabbed headlines, they put him at odds with the automaker's advertising firms in Detroit and New York.

GM is said to be considering a return to Facebook advertising, although recent reports could be nullified by today's news.

For now, GM's Vice President of U.S. Sales and Service, Alan Batey, will handle the automaker's marketing efforts on "an interim basis."