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An International Star, the Ford Ecosport, Says “Oi” to the World

Le Challenge
As Ford geared up to launch the 2012 EcoSport in Brazil, it needed to break from tradition and create a far reaching, compelling campaign that directly engaged consumers. The EcoSport’s launch was important because it would be the first car sold worldwide under Ford’s new manufacturing model. This model consisted of one vehicle, manufactured and assembled in one country and shipped worldwide. Brazil would be the first country to manufacture, ship and launch a car under this flagship model. This would place the eyes of the corporate and automotive worlds on Brazil. The launch was set to take place eight months before the car would be commercially available at dealers. So, the team had to keep the EcoSport in the news until its availability and also create awareness for a planned pre-order event, a novel concept to Brazilian consumers.

The Burson-Marsteller Brazil team partnered with Ford’s communications leaders to develop a truly unique product launch experience that would catapult the 2012 EcoSport onto the world’s stage. The cross-agency team decided to position the EcoSport in the Brazilian market as Ford’s international symbol of innovation. It would be a point of pride and distinction for Brazil, a nation establishing itself as global player.

The team decided to execute three distinct consumer events, called the EcoSport Parade, between May and August 2012. The EcoSport Parade consisted of a series of consumer-focused events designed to reach targeted consumers, multiple times through multiple channels leveraging social media. One major newsworthy event was planned per month, allowing the campaign’s momentum to build and multiply over the course of the spring and summer.

As a result of creating and maintaining momentum and interest in the vehicle over the course of eight months, the official launch was a huge success. Ford pre-sold 3,000 EcoSports, exceeding Ford’s expectations. Brazilian media thoroughly covered the EcoSport launch with more than 1,500 stories secured, and social media efforts via Facebook, Twitter and blogs reached target audiences across the nation. One specific launch event held in Brasília generated instant social media buzz, with more than 2.5 million impressions and Ford at the top of Twitter’s trending topics in Brazil within a few hours of the event.