Ford Motor Company Ditches Super Bowl for Social Media

Social Media Importance

Implications of Major Companies Embracing Social Media Marketing Campaigns

Obtaining a television slot during the Super Bowl at upwards of $86,000.00 per second has typically been an advertiser’s dream destination. But the marketing world may soon experience some shifts in the game of business.

According to a recent article from Reuters, Jim Farley, the Chief of Marketing at Ford Motor Company recently announced that Ford will not be participating in the Super Bowl advertising campaigns this year. Instead, Ford will shift its marketing dollars towards the growing world of social media marketing campaigns.

Farley says he thinks Ford can get more for its money by putting their advertising efforts towards social networks like Facebook, Twitter and Youtube.

Some Marketing Considerations

Farley told Reuters that “advertising dollars have to flow to where the people are.”

Now, that just makes good sense.

Currently, there are over 1.9 billion Internet users. Of those people, 500 million are on Facebook, 110 million are on Twitter and over 2 billion access Youtube each day.

Ford understands that word-of-mouth advertising is the best kind of advertising a company can get. By tapping into social media to connect with a younger, richer population, Ford is hoping to accelerate its word-of-mouth recommendations through a strategic social media campaign.

To be effective in social media, you cannot have a passive presence. You have got to be engaging, compelling—and cool. You need to understand your target audience. And you must humanize your brand in such a way that people feel connected to your business.

Lessons to be Learned from Ford

Ford is doing a couple things right as it seeks to engage people with its brand through social media. First, they’re promoting active involvement with the Ford brand through relevant contests. Second, they’re tying big social media campaigns to large events, like the Super Bowl, when people are more likely to be actively involved with social media. Third, they’re creating a brand that people want to be associated with—a brand that people feel connected to.

So, is there a positive correlation between Ford’s social media efforts and ROI? Definitely.

Ford has experienced a 22% increase in sales so far in 2010; this is two times the growth of the auto industry altogether. The Ford Motor Company has spent about 25% of its marketing dollars on digital media in 2010 and we wait eagerly to see how they fair in comparison to their auto competitors who opt for the Super Bowl ads.

Just like Ford led the way in creating the assembly line, Ford is now leading the way in effective marketing for the digital generation.