“The Fiesta is a superb little car.” “In terms of fun per buck, the Fiesta gets our vote.” “The Fiesta appears to be a very well-engineered little car, and its got knockout looks.” I haven’t said any of these quotes, yet.
I expect all that will quickly change once I get behind the wheel of this thing.
The quotes actually appear on Ford’s main site promoting their car called the Fiesta (¡Que RrrrRico!—Feel free to just play that in the background while you continue reading). The vehicle has been a hit in Europe and has a US debut planned for 2011. Are you kidding?! That’s two years from now! Ugh. Before falling into a pit of despair an opportunity shone out of the emotional darkness like pair of headlights, “www.fiestamovement.com.”
Here’s where it gets interesting. Ford has teamed up with NYC agency Undercurrent (part of Action Marketing Group) and devised a very smart launch campaign. If you’re a US Citizen who can drive and you’re over the age of 21, then you (background search pending) can be one of 100 people to drive the Fiesta for 6 months, Apr 2009-Nov 2009–that’s way before it launches in the US. Not only that but they’re offering sweet perks during that time frame like free gas, insurance, and maintenance. So what’s the catch? I mean yea, me driving all over the place with this car is great exposure for them, but that can’t be all–do I need to tattoo a Ford logo on my body? Not quite, they’re called Monthly Missions.
Each month (of the 6) as a selected candidate you would be expected to dedicate at least one weekend to a mission in your Fiesta. There will be a range of missions to choose from which are first come, first serve for the 100 selected drivers. Once the challenge is finished, you’d likely be expected to tell everyone about it: Post the pictures on your Flickr, Tweet on Twitter, upload videos of your missions on YouTube. This campaign revolves around its social media component and the candidate’s ability to tell the world about their 6-month Fiesta experience.
So how do I know all of this? Well aside from this information being on the site, I spoke to someone from the Fiesta Movement on Wednesday. Did I actually go out of my way to interview someone for my blog post? No, it’s sort of the other way around. I’ve entered the competition with my video and was interviewed for what can only be described as my Forditude. I won’t find out until March 27th if I’ve made it as one of the 100, but I sincerely hope I am.
Not only am I genuinely interested in the car (C’mon! Didn’t you see that video I linked from the UK earlier?!) but I’m interested in the learning opportunity this provides. I’m used to coming up with marketing plans and promotional ideas, but rarely have I ever been on the other end of it. If selected, I’m excited to see what it feels like to be a participant in this kind of process and then use that experience to make my participants comfortable when I’m creating my own campaigns. I guess you can call me a method advertiser, just as long as it’s Ford calling me on the 27th.
Full Disclosure: I don’t have any tattoos, but I do have a long scar across my left side and I change the story every time.