IRVINE, CA: Lincoln Mercury's PR operations will move, along with the rest of its corporate staff, from California back to Michigan as a result of Ford realigning its brands.
The change should not result in any major changes in PR staffing or use of outside agencies, said Nancy Carollo, public affairs manager.
Burson-Marsteller has been working with Lincoln Mercury for four years, and will now do so from its Dearborn, MI, office, said Gerry Tschopp, a director in Burson's brand marketing practice and the client leader on the account. "I think the fundamental relationship will stay the same," he said. Burson hasn't determined if any staffers will be moved from California to Dearborn as a result of the change.
Ford moved Lincoln Mercury to California in 1998. It became part of the Premier Automotive Group that includes Jaguar, Land Rover, Aston Martin, and Volvo, in 2001.
The move was designed to put Lincoln Mercury closer to the California luxury-car market, often a trend setter for the rest of the country. It also was seen as giving the two Ford nameplates younger, trendier images.
The move back to Dearborn comes after Ford moved Lincoln Mercury out of the Premier group and into its North American Consumer Business Group, which also includes the Ford brand. Ford Motor Company is based in Dearborn.