Ford’s “Go Further” Advertising

The Ford brand is getting a lot of buzz from its new “Go Further” commercial that doesn’t vocalize the brand name or show badging on any of the vehicles.

Check out the minute-long spot

This commercial is NOT devoid of Ford branding. There are a few, very obvious clues to sharp-eyed viewers of this ad who the advertiser is. Gear heads and car enthusiasts would certainly know that the EcoBoost engines mentioned belong to Ford and Ford alone. Then at the :42 and :47 marks, the words “2013 Fusion Energi” and “Ford Motor Co.” appear on the bottom of the screen in small print for several seconds.

Bravo to Ford and its ad agency, TeamDetroit, both  in Dearborn, Michigan. This is a very smart way to reel in inquisitive people who would never consider a Ford since they would very likely to check out the web site appearing at the end of the commercial.

Ford says “Go Further” replaces “Drive One,” which always sounded a bit desperate and Ford’s days of desperation seem well in its rear-view mirror.

The automaker also says it’s making a conscious effort to move from showing people to showcasing what’s new in the showroom. Great move, since what is Ford selling after all? (And the move is reminiscent of the philosophy of the late, great Dick Johnson, top creative of BBDO Detroit on Dodge. See my post about Dick and his philosophy here

Hope this move means farewell to the “surprise press conference” format with actual Ford owners.

Ford has caught some flack for its “Go Further” line. Critics say Ford  copied the “Go Farther” ad tag that Isuzu used in USA ads starting in the late 1990s. Isuzu, which no longer sells light vehicles in the US anymore, wanted to convey the toughness and go-any where capabilities of its all-truck lineup. See what I mean in this Isuzu Rodeo commercial, one of my favorites in the series, from Isuzu’s agency Goodby, Silverstein & Partners in San Francisco. (Sorry for the lousy resolution, but it’s the only version I could find)

Yeah, the words are similar, but the intent of each auto brand’s ad tag is very different. Very different indeed, don’t you agree? Looking forward to the next versions of Ford’s “Go Farther” ads.

MAKING TRACKS:  Jack Valente, who moved to InStadium as senior VP of national business development, from client leader at Mindshare.

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One response to “Ford’s “Go Further” Advertising

  1. The slogan: “Go Further” seems silly to me. They (Ford) are suggesting that “they” have had to go further to produce new cars. So why are the ads telling the consumer to “Go Further”. Now, if you were to tell me that I could go “farther”, I would be more interested in the product. – Not to mention half of the population will confuse further with farther in the first place. I would suggest a less confusing and more educational slogan: ” We go further so you can go farther!”

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