Ford Shares Its Struggle

Ford Bold Moves is a new effort from Ford Motor Company that comes close to living up to its name. The site will feature short films that address the pressing business issues confronting the Detroit automaker. The first episode is available now.
According to Ad Age:

Charlie Hughes, founder of consultant BrandRules and a veteran auto executive, predicted the primary audience of the push is Ford employees. He cited former Ford Chairman Alex Trotman’s statement in the 1990s that his biggest problem was getting his own people to believe in changes in the company. Mr. Hughes expects Ford dealers to be the secondary audience.

I don’t dispute Hughes’ claim, but transparency of this nature is appreciated by consumers, as well. And the films have a “Blog It” button, indicating that Ford hopes to receive some decent citizen press from this campaign.

About David Burn

Co-founder and editor of AdPulp. I wrote my first ad for a political candidate when I was 17 years old. She won her race and I felt the seductive power of advertising for the first time. I worked for seven agencies in five states before launching my own practice in 2009. Today, I am head of brand strategy and creative at Bonehook in Portland, Oregon.


  1. Regardless of the online propaganda, the new advertising campaign is neither bold nor moving. It’s just a bunch of 90s-style slice-of-life bullshit. The commercial featuring a hip-hop track blended with Celine Dion-style singers — complete with breakdancers — is particularly pathetic.

  2. Okay, so you don’t like the execution. Do you like a company willing to air its laundry in public? Do you see that as a valuable exercise?

  3. I’m especially resentful of the “Latin” execution of this campaign with “Mauel” LITERALLY “tipping his hat” to a couple in a Bold New Ford Sportscar, only to hilariously reveal that “Manuel” is the woman’s ex!!!
    Viva feminisim, con salsa!
    This whole “bold” campaign brings me back-YET AGAIN-to the idea that you can’t convince someone at a party that you’re funny by saying, “Hi, I’m Frank, and I’m FUNNY!”
    It doesn’t work with a 60 million dollar media budget, either.

  4. Not sure there’s value for a company airing its dirty laundry — especially when it’s a screwed-up company. Why broadcast to the world that you don’t have your act together? It might work for a confident company that has it together. But confirming negative perceptions seems a little desperate. They should straighten their house first, then come tell us about it.
    Plus, after watching the video, it felt like some GM retread with not-too-subtle bashing of Japanese automakers. Ford should consider why the Japanese are becoming more successful and consider emulating them. Or better yet, actually emulate the spirit of their freaking founder (versus saying they’re emulating the spirit of their founder).