It doesn’t take a doctorate in marketing to realize that social media is a force to be reckoned with when it comes to communicating with customers, enthusiasts, and fans alike. For that reason, Ford is embracing the power of Facebook — the largest social network in the world — to provide details about the development of the much-awaited Focus ST.
Ford will use the Focus fan page on Facebook, which has over 319,000 fans, to share exclusive videos and photos that highlight the car’s various features and show the hot-hatch undergoing testing by the Blue Oval’s Global Performance vehicle team.
The Focus ST will be Ford’s first truly global performance vehicle. Expected to launch in 2012, it will be powered by a 2.0 liter EcoBoost engine good for 247 horsepower.
The Motrolix Take
This isn’t all that momentous until we realize that exclusive information about the ST, which I personally can’t wait for, will first be made available on the Focus’ Facebook fan page. Exclusive information and updates — available on the Facebook Fan Page before they’re made available anywhere else.
Why would Ford do such a thing? At the expense of touting the social media horn all to myself, the new-school medium allows for the most direct and interactive connection to an audience, market, and fans of certain brands and products. And having the chance for 745 million active users to see the message makes it that much more attractive.
But perhaps what’s most important is the fact that Ford is able to engage with fans of the Focus and the Focus ST on a global scale — made possible thanks to the automaker’s global product strategy. Contrast that to what GM is doing by giving the same vehicles different names around the world, and it’s easy to see the superior nature of the One Ford plan.
So without further ado, here’s the first duo of videos posted to the Fan Page in question since the announcement. Both feature Jost Capito, Director of Global Performance Vehicles at Ford.[expand]
Facebook Fans to Get Exclusive Progress Reports on New Ford Focus ST
- Exclusive video and photography of the all-new Ford Focus ST to be shared first on the Focus Facebook page, highlighting the car’s technology, performance and practicality
- Videos will give global Focus fans insights into the project from key members of the development team, as well as previously unseen vehicle footage ahead of next year’s launch
- Online campaign will be ongoing, helping Focus Facebook fans – more than 300,000 strong – stay up to speed with the progress of Ford’s first global performance car
DEARBORN, Mich., Sept. 1, 2011 – Since Ford first announced its all-new Focus ST, performance car fans around the world have been eager to find out more. To answer this demand, Ford will begin actively sharing both exclusive video and photography, first on the Ford Focus Facebook page, to keep enthusiasts up to date on the development of this sporty new model.
The materials will explore technical highlights, the driving experience and high levels of refinement that make up the core DNA of the new Focus ST, which is expected to deliver an estimated 247 HP/250 PS when production begins. The more than 300,000 fans of the Focus Facebook page will be able to access newly generated and previously unseen footage of Focus ST development cars undergoing testing, plus insights into the car’s features from key members of the Global Performance Vehicle team.
“Our Facebook page allows us to reach out to enthusiasts around the world for the first time and share with them the final stages of development of the new Focus ST as it happens,” said Jost Capito, director of Global Performance Vehicles. “This is Ford’s first truly global performance vehicle, and social media gives us a rare opportunity to show enthusiasts how this car is progressing, gives insight into its technologies and builds excitement in this community as we finalize Focus ST’s technical specifications.”
Updates will start with a look at the specific work involved in developing a global performance car and how the Global Performance Vehicles team has been testing Focus ST in numerous weather conditions and over a wide variety of road surfaces.
The video clips will then explore some of the cutting-edge features of Focus ST, including enhanced Torque Vectoring Control, the advanced Electronic Stability Program and innovations applied to the 2.0-liter Ford EcoBoost® engine and finely tuned suspension.
As the team continues its testing regime and as Focus ST gets closer to its 2012 launch, Ford will keep fans of the page updated, reporting from the company’s proving grounds at Lommel in Belgium, the infamous Nürburgring in Germany, from hot weather testing trips in Spain and the United States, and from driving quality tests over twisty B-roads in the U.K.
“We are determined that the new Focus ST will meet the very high expectations of our fans around the world,” said Capito. “Focus ST will deliver on the promise of great technology, exciting driving dynamics and high levels of refinement – making it as enjoyable to use for everyday driving as it will be on exciting and challenging roads we performance enthusiasts deliberately seek out.
“Our Facebook series is equally exciting,” Capito added, “as it lets us connect directly for the first time with performance and Ford enthusiasts alike, and takes them with us through the final stages of development for the new Focus ST.”
To follow the new Focus ST story and get involved in the action, visit Ford’s Focus Facebook page: www.facebook.com/fordfocus