Ford Relaunches ‘Swap Your Ride’ Campaign

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The third and latest version of Ford’s “Swap Your Ride” advertising campaign premiered Tuesday night on network and cable television. The ads are part of a spring sales promotion.

“Swap Your Ride” advertising first aired in 2007 with owners of rival makes being given Ford vehicles to drive for a week, then talking about their experience on camera. An accompanying off-camera narration was provided by Mike Rowe, who at the time was best known for hosting the Discovery Channel’s “Dirty Jobs” television show. The campaign proved popular with Ford dealers and scored well in research, but was dropped at the end of the model year.

Ford revived the idea in 2010, with Mr. Rowe appearing on camera and quizzing the car-swapping consumers about their experiences in the Ford and how it compared to their own vehicles.

Lois Miller, Nielsen Automotive president, said the campaign was very effective, with viewers rating the Ford ads as memorable at a rate of 48 percent higher than for other automotive sales-event commercials that appeared during the same time period.

The latest version of the campaign takes it a step further, with Mr. Rowe interacting directly with a group of car-swappers in a kind of feel-good get-together. The swappers, who were hand-picked from a large group of car owners, park their own cars and drive Fords for a week, then gather with other swappers to talk to Mr. Rowe about their experiences.

Sixteen spots were produced and most Ford vehicles were featured. The first four spots to air will focus on fuel economy and technology, with each commercial featuring one car-swapper and one Ford vehicle.

The ads were directed by Jessica Yu, an Academy Award-winning documentary filmmaker.

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Source : https://wheels.blogs.nytimes.com/2011/04/05/to-sell-cars-ford-swaps-rides-once-again/

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