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So you're managing PR for an automotive brand rolling out a new model, and you're ready to reveal specs that the public is waiting to hear. How do you announce those specs? Traditional PR guidelines would say to write a press release and send it out to major media outlets. Well, for the new 2011 Ford Explorer, Ford has bypassed traditional media and revealed the vehicle step by step over social media. Most recently, the manufacturer announced the new Explorer's MPG through an entertaining YouTube video without even mentioning the mileage in any press release.
After weathering the recession better than any other American auto manufacturer, Ford continues to see successful sales. Besides knowing how to make a quality vehicle, Ford knows how to market to today's generation. People today use social media sites like Facebook and YouTube constantly. When a manufacturer can tease a product and promise to reveal features over time, people will flock to a page and also tell their friends. Long before the official revelation of the 2011 Explorer, Ford pumped up its release with sneak pics and continues to add interesting content to the official Explorer Facebook page. Their efforts have picked up almost 80,000 fans on the page!
Take a lesson from Ford and learn that traditional automotive marketing efforts just don't work the same way in an interactive world. Build a social media following for your auto dealership to reach today's audience.