Ford was established in 1909 and the company currently employ over 35,000 employees. For the past 45 years it has been the UK’s biggest-selling commercial vehicle brand and since the late 1970s it has been the biggest-selling car brand. Ford’s social media strategy is consistent with, and supportive of their overall business goals and communications strategy. Ford wanted to:
“humanize the company by connecting constituents with Ford employees and with each other when possible, providing value in the process”
Ford have established a presence on a variety of social platforms for instance; Twitter, Facebook, Flickr, YouTube, Delicious, Upcoming and Scribd. Ford are aware that in relationship marketing, it’s up to the brand to reach the customer. They have done this through creating a separate website called the 'Ford Social'.
This website has become the central hub for customer engagement, building relationships and conversation around the brand. All of their content is uploaded to the site as well as directly to their profiles on the above social platforms. This allows for the greatest opportunity for their content to be viewed.
Throughout the ‘Ford Social’ website, the focus is on the customers. It encourages customers to share their own ideas and stories as well as sharing Ford’s content on different social networks. They actively encourage customers to submit their own ideas and stories around different models of their vehicles.
In effect they have created their own ‘Ford Social Network’ and are using other channels to help distribute their content and to drive customer engagement with the brand. By giving their customers a place to voice their ideas, and by listening to what they have to say, Ford are able to differentiate their products more. Due to the nature of this market, customers usually only purchase a new car every 3-10 years and Ford’s strategy is being employed to generate strong loyalties towards their brand to capitalize on the lifetime value of their customers.