DEARBORN - The second phase of television advertising begins this weekend for the 2013 Ford Escape. And it is designed to bring some of the exclusive features and technology of the reinvented SUV to life through the eyes of the employees who were instrumental in creating them.
The 30-second ads, called “Points of Inspiration,” begin airing on Saturday, Sept. 1, during prime time college football on ABC and FOX. They will also air on Sunday, Sept. 2, during popular programs like The Mentalist and 60 Minutes on CBS and Once Upon a Time on ABC.
According to Matt VanDyke, director, U.S. Marketing Communications, the new ads are a natural evolution of the summer Escape advertising campaign that was based on Ford’s Go Further brand promise messaging.
“We started by telling the story of how we as a company went further by redesigning the Escape,” he said. “Now we are focusing on individual employees and engineers and how they went further putting surprising new features into the vehicle.”
The new spots are called Points of Inspiration because they showcase Ford employees and what moved them to create some of the most compelling new features of the Escape.
Click on images to watch the ads.
“We’re telling a great story about how our employees were inspired and motivated to go further and create the features and technology that set the Escape apart from the rest of the competition in the SUV segment,” said VanDyke.
One of the ads – there are four in total – features Ford engineer Vince Mahe. He was part of the team that developed the Escape’s new hands-free liftgate.
“Ever ask somebody to lend you a foot?” the ad begins. “Who thinks about stuff like that? Vince Mahe grew up on two continents and noticed that wherever you go, people have their hands full and their feet free. The result: a liftgate that you operate with your foot…It’s what happens when you go further.”
Mahe says he believes putting a face on the product development team demonstrates how much Ford respects its employees.
“It shows that Ford values us so much that they are willing to tell the world that these are our people and this is what they have done,” he said. “I compare it to a parent putting their kid’s report card up on the refrigerator because they are so proud of what they have accomplished.”
Another ad showcases Designer Erika Tsubaki and how she went further with her team to design the new Escape.
“There’s stylish and there’s functional. And then there’s both,” the ad begins. “Erica Tsubaki is big fan of both. That’s what she and her team had in mind when they designed the all-new Ford Escape with more cargo space than before wrapped in a brand new body. The tech-savvy, ready-for-adventure all-new 2013 Ford Escape. It’s what happens when you go further.”
Tsubaki described the time she spent filming the ad as “a great experience.”
“I think using employees in the ads provides a unique opportunity for consumers to ‘meet’ the people behind the products,” she said. “It makes Ford more personal, and it shows that we are proud to be Ford employees.”
Also featured in the Escape ads are Powertrain Engineer Scott Makowski, who worked on the EcoBoost engine, and HMI (Human Machine Interface) Engineer Jennifer Brace, who worked on the development of SYNC with MyFord Touch.
Brace also appeared in advertising earlier this year for the Ford Taurus that – like the Escape ads – was designed to spotlight employees. Those ads – which also featured NASCAR driver Carl Edwards – succeeded in increasing awareness and improving favorable opinion for the new Taurus. And data from the second quarter 2012 Brand Equity and Awareness Tracking (BEAT) study showed that Taurus significantly improved on all metrics throughout the purchase funnel following the launch of the ad campaign.
“In both instances, filming was kind of surreal,” said Brace. “It’s not every day that I have people to select my wardrobe and do my make-up. It was certainly a fun experience to get pampered but even more rewarding was the chance to show off the product I’ve worked so hard on.”
All of the Escape ads end with the Go Further messaging: “It’s what happens when you go further.” The spots will be rolled out progressively beginning with Mahe’s and Tsubaki’s on Sept. 1.
Later in the month, the Escape team will launch an exciting new series of online webisodes called “Escape My Life.” Stay tuned for more information about that.
2013 Ford Escape: Global Vehicle, Global Advertising
Tsubaki – who is stationed in Cologne, Germany – is one member of a global product development team that created the new Ford Escape.
While the vehicle will be sold as the Escape here in North America, it will be sold as the Ford Kuga in other regions of the world such as Europe, Asia Pacific and Africa and certain parts of South America like Argentina.
As part of the One Ford plan under the direction of Elena Ford, director of Global Marketing, Sales & Service, all marketing efforts for the Escape/Kuga will be consolidated globally as the vehicle continues to launch at different stages throughout the world. Essentially, that means that the Escape ads that people see in North America will be virtually the same for all regions, allowing for differences for minor product and legal variations.
“We are increasingly trying to align ourselves with global messaging in all areas of launch – from the first public reveal at global auto shows through to the consumer launches within each region throughout the world,” said Ford. “Our intent with Escape was to have a singular strategy for a global product and use a single advertising production to create efficiency across all regions.”