We don’t just want it to be seen,” said Jeff Eggen, Ford’s car experiential marketing manager, speaking about the Fiesta’s appearance in “Diaries.” The idea is to “have a second element or a third element” rather than just a placement on a TV program, “where we can engage with the fans outside of the show with additional content
While AdAge raves over Ford’s “product placement plus” marketing scheme for the Fiesta, actual customers for the Mexican-built subcompact are starting to get testy. The Fiesta’s Facebook page is home to several customer complaints about slow delivery of Fiesta, and Ford has already sent out $50 Mastercard gift cards to waiting customers. But in the letter accompanying the gift cards, Ford blamed hurricanes for Fiesta delays… and it turns out there’s more to the story than that. The Freep reports that 6,000 Fiestas were delayed last week due what Ford’s Mark Fields calls “a part-quality issue.”
Fields reassures consumers that only 12 out of the 2,300 cars that were inspected were found to be lacking, and
We have addressed it, and vehicles are shipping from the plant. We don’t believe that, at this point, there are any vehicles in customers’ hands that have that issue
More importantly, he stresses that
The biggest delay was caused by Mother Nature
Ford’s received much attention for its marketing in the leadup to the Fiesta launch, and the good vibes are clearly here to stay in the advertising industry press. So we’ll be the one’s to say it: your marketing doesn’t mean squat if you can’t deliver cars to customers. Acts of nature suck and we’re certainly glad Ford delayed again rather than ship Fiestas with faulty parts, but the unsexy business of delivering to customers is just as important as building buzz. Without product (and not just the “vamped-out” contest prize model), the buzz has no purpose.