The idea was to show Ford’s family cars in authentic environments and everyday situations that many relate to - the car is a rallying point for the family, even in difficult times like a divorce. ‘The Family’ is a 16 minutes short film produced for online. The film gives an up-close view of just how difficult divorce can be on all members of the family. But it also leaves a sense of optimism in the sense that a family –in spite of a divorce - can continue to be there for one another, even in the most trying times.
Although it was important for the credibility of the film to not make it all about Ford - we still wanted to get the message across, that so much of life happens in cars, so you better buy a good one.
We didn’t want to underestimate the importance of getting global attention, in order to make a greater local impact. The 16 minute short film was a PR spearhead designed to create attention in Denmark and beyond. There is a close connection between global reach and local Danish impact. We therefore planned for more than just viral spread. We wanted to harvest global attention giving the campaign validation and extra news value for the local Danish press. We launched the campaign in week 17, both locally and globally and reached out to more than 500 editors, primarily in the US and Denmark.
Despite an unusual long format for an online advert the campaign managed to gather much attention and recognition, including ‘Ad of the Day’ on Adweek.com and a gold lion in the Entertainment category in Cannes.
Within the campaign's first week, the film was picked up by some of the most influential medias including Daily Mail and Huffington post. This resulted in a social reach of more than 10M people. Within the first 3 weeks more than 120 stories were published reaching 100M people. As predicted, the extensive coverage internationally generated even more interest from the local press. Amongst other, Denmark’s biggest commercial TV station, TV2, picked up the story and addressed the international recognition the campaign had received. The campaign generated more than 1000 tweets from users posting the story. In total the campaign went far beyond target expectations and clocked up a ROI of 460 percent in PR value.
The combination of an unusual format, a 16 minute long short-film, and an unusual topic, divorce, made for a 'first' in the car adverts category. But defying the odds, we managed to tell a story that people related to, because it wasn't a glossy picture of the perfect family driving the perfect car. The verdict is still out on whether it has motivated more people to buy aFord. But the mission was to create a film that resonated with our audience and ignited conversations. With results to back it, we achieved what we set out to do with this campaign.
Ford’s only criterion for the campaign was, that it showcase Ford’s wide range of cars, suitable for different life-stages. E.g. small first-time cars like the Fiesta, to bigger family cars like the Mondeo. Our strategy was based on the fusion of a simple fact about the Danish people along with a key insight about the car’s function: Fact: In 2014, more than 54% of marriages in Denmark ended in divorce – the highest ever. Divorce is hence something that the broad Danish public can identify with, and thereby also Ford’s target audience, due to its wide-ranging product portfolio. Insight: The physical space within a car can be a significant setting, when e.g. a couple is divorcing; it can be both a place of freedom and a place of friction for all family members involved - a space where meaningful moments can take place. This set the foundation for our story.