Ford launches buyer-focused TV effort


The Detroit Free Press reports Ford plans to launch a 24-week TV campaign on Monday with 40 commercials featuring actual Ford customers talking about the features of the Ford vehicles that they like. The new commercials are an extension of an effective formula Ford used recently as well as an effort to take Ford from a brand customers respect to one viewed as offering cutting-edge products.

“We wanted to sort of ride the wave of enthusiasm that Ford has been having … and it seemed like the best way to do that was by sharing the stories of the people who are enjoying the product,” said Toby Barlow, chief creative officer for Team Detroit.

The new campaign also demonstrates that Ford is increasingly willing to flex its marketing muscle in an attempt to solidify recent market share gains.

Ford, the only domestic automaker to forgo federal emergency funding, has gained a full point of market share over the first nine months of this year and reported a $2.3-billion profit for the second quarter.

While the company doesn’t expect to earn a profit for the year and is burdened with $25.8 billion in automotive debt, Matt VanDyke, Ford’s director of marketing communications, said Ford will increase total ad spend during the final three months of 2009.

And for the year, VanDyke said, Ford will spend about 10% more than last year. In 2008, Ford spent an estimated $1.01 billion, according to TNS Media Intelligence.