brand faces

2 Guys, 1 Campaign: Sonic Puts 2 Guys Back in the Front Seat

Posted by Dale Buss on February 22, 2012 02:25 PM

Raising hopes that fans might hear a reprise of classic lines such as "Go long!" for tater tots, Sonic is bringing back "those two guys" who sat in a car outside Sonic restaurants in TV commercials for eight years, letting their friendship humorously unfold over bites of Sonic burgers and whatever special the chain was running.

With a new, character-driven viral campaign seeded on a mock websiteYouTube, Twitter, Facebook and, er, LinkedIn, America's fourth-largest fast-food chain is bidding to have the two guys join Old Spice's Isaiah Mustafa and Ford's Focus Doug in the pantheon of heroes of recent marketing campaigns that have relied heavily on social media.Continue reading...

auto motive

Ford Ad Knocking Bailouts Takes on a Life of Its Own; and a Final Goodbye to Doug

Posted by Dale Buss on September 29, 2011 07:01 PM

Ford has created a mini-tempest by pulling a TV ad (above) from its Drive One series in which a buyer of its F-150 truck credits the company for not accepting a federal bailout in 2009 when General Motors and Chrysler did. Or, looked at another way, the customer in the ad himself, Chris McDaniel, is creating the mini-tempest.

Detroit News columnist Daniel Howe began the row by suggesting that the ad, which was launched in early September, was pulled by Ford "after individuals inside the White House questioned whether the copy was publicly denigrating" the Obama administration's bailouts of Ford's chief rivals.

Ford spokeswoman Meghan Keck told brandchannel that there was "no pressure involved" in Ford's decision and that the spot featuring McDaniel was rotated on and off the air just like other ads in the series, which features real Ford customers answering "questions" at a staged press conference.

In the ad, McDaniel said that he "wasn't going to buy another car that was bailed out by our government. I was going to buy from a manufacturer that's standing on their own: win, lose or draw. That's what America is about."Continue reading...

brand mascots

RIP, Doug: Ford Sends Focus Spokespuppet Packing

Posted by Dale Buss on September 28, 2011 05:57 PM

It was only last week that we asked, "Has Ford's Focus Spokespuppet Doug Jumped the Shark?" Turns out, he has jumped ship entirely.

Ford has decided to shelve Doug, the orange spokespuppet for the Focus, after a six-month run that did wonders for consumer interest in the car, exceeding the company's initial expectations.

Brandchannel has learned that the denouement of Doug's story will be told on Thursday with the release of the last new video in a series of many.

Ford released the penultimate chapter today, a Doug-less video that featured only "John," the human handler for the smart-alecky mascot, bemoaning the departure of his friend after Doug drove off himself in a 2012 Focus.

"The video today tipped it off," Scott Monty, Ford's head of social media, told brandchannel. "Tomorrow we'll have the concluding video."Continue reading...

brand vs. brand

Ford CMO Downplays GM Remarks, Talks Up Digital

Posted by Dale Buss on August 5, 2011 01:53 PM

Jim Farley, Ford’s CMO, created quite a stir this week at an auto industry confab in northern Michigan when he told reporters that he had called his counterpart at General Motors, Joel Ewanick, to apologize.

For what, pray tell? For making a few choice remarks about a rival — specifically, General Motors.Continue reading...

brand ambassadors

Ford Spokespuppet Teaches Focus Fans How to Dougie

Posted by Dale Buss on July 29, 2011 01:00 PM

Since he was introduced in a viral campaign back in March, "Focus Doug" has shown his true colors (other than orange) as an egotistical and shamelessly self-promotional spokespuppet. But the only reason that Ford marketers still put up with this fuzzy little blowhard – and, indeed, keep giving him online-only video exposure on YouTube – is that he’s helping to sell the new, 2012 Focus compact cars he’s supposed to be touting instead of himself.

“Doug has gotten Focus before hundreds of thousands of people,” Robert Parker, a group marketing manager for Ford, told brandchannel. “It’s too early to tell how many sales have resulted, but on the awareness curve – people who were aware there is a new Focus pre-Doug, versus the number of people aware post-Doug – has gone way up.”Continue reading...

ad watch

Ad Watch: Alec Baldwin vs. John Krasinski, Ford Focus Doug and more

Posted by Shirley Brady on May 12, 2011 05:00 PM

Above, the latest "trash talking" spot from New Era Caps featuring Alec Baldwin and John Krasinski.

Below, new commercials from P&G, Ford, Dr. Pepper, Kraft and more.Continue reading...

brand mascots

Mascots Gone Wild: Watch Focus Doug and Travelocity Gnome in LA

Posted by Shirley Brady on April 20, 2011 04:30 PM

As we highlighted last week, Ford and Travelocity are teaming up for a cross-promotion that leverages one brand's classic mascot — Travelocity's Roaming Gnome, currently hosting a #greengnome pre-Earth Day scavenger hunt in New York — and a newer upstart in Doug, the 2012 Ford Focus "spokespuppet."

In a just-released video that includes a nod to Travelocity partners such as the Beverly Wilshire hotel, the co-branding move is pegged to a sweepstakes that kicks off today.

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