The folks over at Ford Canada invited me and 149 other bloggers to attend the North American International Auto Show (NAIAS) and Ford Fantasy Camp in Detroit. It was the largest sponsored press event which included new media that I’ve ever heard of and experienced first-hand.
At NAIAS, Ford unveiled the smart, sleek and sexy 2013 Fusion which earned AutoWeek’s Best in Show. I was honoured to be a part of the two-day whirlwind that undoubtedly inspired all of the bloggers who came from all around the world.
There is so much to say about this trip that I have to write several posts to cover all of it. But I do have to begin by saying that Ford really thinks outside the box, especially when it comes to their new media/social media campaigns. They really see the value of online media as influencers and as such, included bloggers in their press event, covering their entire trips to attend.
It makes sense because Ford sees itself as a technology company, not just an auto company.
Ford is also proud of “being different.” And that, they definitely are. Ford is forward thinking in social media, and it paid off.
Scott Monty, head of Ford’s Social Media, shared some mind-blowing statistics at the end of Day One; about 70 per cent of the information shared on social media about NAIAS, came from us, the 150 bloggers that first day. We collectively reached 5 million people. Amazing.
Global Design and Chief Creative Officer J Mays said it best. At the end of our stay, he thanked us all, acknowledging that we had asked more thought-provoking questions than traditional auto media.
So there you go – social media works.
We stayed at The Henry hotel in Dearborn, Michigan, a gorgeous hotel close to the Henry Ford Museum and Ford Motor Company offices.
Our first evening, we visited the Henry Ford Museum, the ultimate place to explore what Americans past and present have imagined and invented, where ideas and innovations come to life. Walking the almost-empty museum and parts of the museum not yet open to the public, I was in awe. You can’t help but think on a different scale and the feeling of surrealism is overwhelming when you’re entrenched in history. With 40-foot ceilings and nine acres, as you walk through the museum, you almost feel like you are reliving history through the remarkable collection.
Seeing John F. Kennedy’s car before your eyes, seeing the chair in which Abraham Lincoln was assassinated on display, stepping into the bus that Rosa Parks rode in, you couldn’t help but feel emotional as witness to major world changing events in American history.
Stay Tuned for my next posts on the Ford NAIAS press conference and the Ford Fantasy Camp!
Ford Motor Company paid for my travel and accommodations during the press event. I was not compensated in any other manner for my time or posts. Opinions posted are completely my own.