According to a, likely inaccurate, internet source searched for the sake of this article, the average American is exposed to approximately 247 ad messages each day.
While the accuracy of that can figure can be debated, it is clear that the number of marketing messages taken in each day by Americans is surely on the rise. It now seems that every event and almost every inch of digital real estate is, at least, colored by a slanted marketing message carefully crafted to influence the behavior and opinions of the citizenry.
Take this innocuous example: the Red Sox recent trip to visit the President at the White House. Instead of just enjoying a rare opportunity to meet with the President Ortiz turned the visit to the White House into a marketing stunt all for a quick buck. According Ortiz himself, “You don’t get a chance to get a photo with the president every day. That’s one thing in life . . . it happened and I appreciate it.”
A similar disingenuous stunt was pulled by newly appointed Tonight Show Host, Jimmy Fallon, when he named the 2015 Ford F-150 King Ranch as his pick for a new truck. The contest came into fruition after Fallon admitted to getting stuck in the sand in his SUV to former California Governor and action star Arnold Schwarzenegger. Well, that and a thinly guised marketing partnership between NBC and Ford.
Ultimately, Fallon chose a super cool truck, but isn’t some of the impact of the choice lost when the entire effort is supported by a multi-million dollar marketing relationship between NBC and Ford?
This year, Ford launches the highly anticipated 2015 Ford F-150 with lighter aluminum bodies that provide for better fuel economy. King Ranch editions have been a part of the Ford line for the last 15 years as a part of a unique relationship between the motor company an actual Texas ranch in Kingsville, Texas.
Ford recognized the King Ranch represented the same philosophies it designs and engineers into its trucks: toughness, authenticity, integrity and quality. According to King Ranch CEO, Robert Underbrink, “King Ranch editions aren’t merely trim levels, they are representations of an authentic American story that parallels that of Ford Motor Company.”
The success of Ford’s association with the King Ranch is reflected in sales, especially in Texas. Forty percent of all F-Series Super Duty King Ranch editions are sold in Texas.
These types of stunts seem to almost degrade the authenticity of the King Ranch brand that Ford so adeptly and carefully developed. But hey, as the number one selling pickup for about 37 years, Ford must be doing something right.
Great choice Jimmy! (ugh)