Ford in Emerging Markets:
“Across global markets where Ford Motor Company does business, the product strategy remains consistent as our vehicles exhibit bold, emotive exterior designs while offering great handling and performance.” Ford has committed itself to creating a global range of vehicles that lead the automobile industry in innovation and efficiency.
The Asia Pacific region is experiencing the largest growth in car sales. Ford expects 60–70 percent of our growth in the next 10 years to come from the Asia Pacific and Africa region. Although Ford is behind other car manufactures like GM, it gets “a chance to compete for first-time buyers (who) want the strength of an international brand.” It is important to understand the forces that have driven Ford in to this emerging market and furthermore what makes Ford appealing to consumers abroad.
Ford’s Globalized Approach to Advertising
As globalization accelerates, the importance of a global strategy is heightened in order to grow and attract markets. Ford has made a recent shift in the manufacturing of their vehicles under the ‘One Ford’ market plan, increasing the sharing of platforms. The 2012 Ford Focus was not only considered one of their first global vehicles, but also became part of a global advertisement campaign. Due to the increasing similarities in markets, the Focus was advertised to a broad range of global markets under the same advertisement campaign that reflected the commonalities among interests in developing markets across the globe. However, this strategy also assumes that one product can satisfy all. Does this homogenous approach reveal the negative side of globalization in which all consumers and markets are in fact becoming the same?
The Expansion of Lincoln
Ford makes simple cars that are affordable and practical. They appeal to customers around the globe with their usefulness as an everyday vehicle. However, this leaves the luxury market untapped. Lincoln, Ford’s luxury subsidiary, is only marketed in North America despite a drastic re-branding formulated over the last few years. However, changes are afoot. Ford is pushing Lincoln into the Chinese market by 2014 and hopes to establish strong sales by the end of the decade. Why is Ford so confident in it’s luxury brand so soon after a global economic crisis? Is China by itself a strong enough market to dictate a global strategy?
The “Fashion” of Ford
One of the first things that comes to mind when we think of Ford is a car or SUV; an image of some sort of vehicle. Ford has ‘driven’ both the economy and its users for decades, and it continues to reign among car manufacturers. It has stretched its domain internationally by opening up subsidiaries in countless countries. Regardless if one is discussing domestic or international Ford products, the visuals remain somewhat consistent. In 2012, Ford released a philosophy that universalized its models and designs. What are the factors behind new models? Is it purely economic, or are there cultural motivators at play as well?
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