Leading with a front-page picture, USA Today reports from the scene of the big 2012 Mustang Boss 302 announcement: http://content.usatoday.com/communities/driveon/post/2010/08/boss-is-back-ford-mustang-boss-302-unveiled-for-2012/1
This is just one example of the enormous coverage Ford has received for the announcement of the new Boss. Most of the major media outlets heavily covered the announcement, as well as just about every automotive-related website or blog in North America (of any brand). And our own humble little blog here exclusively broke the news when the Speed channel accidentally leaked it. We’re happy we could be of service.
We’re registered as “press” with most of the manufacturers of interest that sell in North America. We’ve been with most of them for many years. And we have a simple observation from the last year or so: Ford is a media rocketship. Just counting the number of press releases issued on a regular basis (well-written, nicely detailed, with lots of images and supporting material), it’s clear that in this regards Ford has out-paced the rest of the industry and that nobody else is even close. There isn’t a day that goes by where we don’t get some news of interest. The entire 2011 Mustang press experience has been the perfect example of how to run a press function, and recent campaigns such as the build up for the new Fiesta have been ground-breaking and unprecedented. We’re looking forward to seeing what they come up with for the upcoming Focus kickoff, and (as we know) dozens of new products are in the pipeline over the next few years.
A far-distant second is Chevrolet, where it would seem that the only thing happening in the company from a product standpoint is the Chevy Volt, followed by a free Corvette handed out to an obscure sports figure (an action which they then had to publicly justify). Does giving a over-pampered and over-paid sports figure a sportscar really drive anybody to shop at their Chevrolet dealer that evening?
Ditto for Chrysler, who is comparatively all but silent. Mitsubishi’s newsroom has issued, by our count, only 8 product press releases the entire year. We understand that Chrysler is seriously ill, and that Mitsubishi is barely holding off death (counting on the arrival of the i-MiEV, perhaps too much?), but surely with dozens of products between them somebody could come up with something interesting to say. Mitsubishi’s flagship, the Lancer Evo, has only had 1 press event this year. A classic battle between the Lancer Evo and the Subary Impreza WRX STi has been fought on racetracks and in the press for the past 15 years – with the Evo almost always winning over it’s terminally-understeering opponent. But this year, in the press and thanks to some creative parts swapping, Subaru has pulled far ahead in the press.
So Ford’s dark years are behind them, sales are sky-rocketing, market share is growing , their press group is leading the way, and profits are enormous. That’s a great thing about Ford: we love the company when it’s being run the right way, but when numbskulls get in the way (like when Little Billy Ford thought he could run the company) we get mad and then we get vocal. This is called mindshare, and Ford has it.
Image: Volume of Ford press releases over past several days.