Ford is giving away cars?! Technically yes, Ford had an event going on called the Fiesta Movement where 100 people were given cars for 6 months. They were given the cars and asked to document their time spent with the car through a number of missions. Youtube channels and flickr accounts were created to show followers of the event what the 100 people were doing with their Fords. 130,000 people registered on the website to find out more about the car. This approach to marketing contrasts with the old way of buying commercial space on the television or in newspapers or magazines.
Michael Stelzner, of Social Media Examiner, interviewed Scott Monty, the social media guru at Ford, about their decision to move their marketing online. They discussed many techniques Ford has begun to implement to include social media into their marketing campaigns. In today’s society of blogs and news online more people are trusting the common man’s review. The process of buying a car has evolved to hearing what friends or colleagues think about the car to help their decision in a type or make. This tactic supports Ford’s decision to put their marketing in the hands of 100 people with their Fiesta Movement. The event has helped Ford understand where the audience is and how to get to them.
It is no surprise that the big companies in industries across the board have begun using social media to connect to their target markets. An important message that Scott Monty mentioned, that is noted in Stelzner’s article “How Ford Gets More Sales With Social Media” is that the traditional media has not been forgotten. It has become a process to include the web tools available in current traditional means of communications.
You can connect with Ford everywhere, Facebook , Youtube, Twitter but Ford has created some unique communities that are worth mentioning. The Ford Story is Ford’s home to everything interactive. They have a formal webpage with the information on their cars, prices and locations but what is different about The Ford Story is the content. There are featured stories written by the customer! 33 pages with more than 10 articles per page allow the reader to find stories written by people like themselves, Ford owners. There is a section to submit ideas, request a speaker, follow Ford, a news stream, flickr page and youtube page. Any outlet that a media junky would be interested in can be found along the right side of Ford’s page. By having this available Ford owners can count on that site to be the source for any information they need.
Ford realizes that selling cars is more than having a good quality car and company locations across the US, the relationship must be there and that starts growing on the web.