The Ford Focus has been the best-selling car in the UK for the past nine years, but its lead is gradually being chipped away by the Vauxhall Astra. Late last year, Ford unveiled a new version of its family car.
The car industry has produced some of the most innovative ads of recent years - think of the Skoda cake car or the Honda choir - and so the consumer launch of the new Focus on 2 February demanded an ad that was something special.
The campaign that debuted on 4 February, part of a £45m marketing campaign running across Europe, is certainly original.
Where Skoda last year famously built a Fabio car out of cake and various other sweet ingredients, Ford built something unusual out of a Focus - in this case, a 31-piece orchestra (or Or-Car-Stra, as Ford called it).
The ad, titled "An Ode to a Ford", shows the orchestra playing a piece composed especially for the campaign by Hollywood composer Craig Richey for a variety of instruments fashioned out of bits of a Ford Focus.
For example, a double bass is made out of the front wing and played with a windscreen wiper, a harp is strung over a car door, trombones are built out of shock absorbers, and a guitar is created from the Focus's clutch. The ad ends with the tagline, "The new Ford Focus, beautifully arranged."
BrandIndex suggests there has been a positive reaction to the ad so far. Buzz rose four points when the ad debuted, with customer satisfaction and perceptions of both quality and value all showing an increase since the ad began running.
Ford will hope that this new and quirky campaign, together with the car's new design, are enough to keep the Focus on top for a 10th year.
YouGov interviews 2,000 people each weekday to form its BrandIndex, a daily measure of public perception of more than 1,100 consumer brands across 32 sectors.
It is measured on a seven-point profile:
2. General impression
7. Corporate reputation
In addition, we supply an index score.
By Sundip Chahal, http://www.brandindex.com/
This article was first published on Media Week