The Ford Fiesta

Posted: 29 Jan 2012

See all articles by John Deighton

John Deighton

Harvard Business School - Marketing Unit

Leora Kornfeld

Harvard Business School

Date Written: June 20, 2011


Executives at Ford wondered if social media could be the marketing solution for the launch of the youth-oriented 2010 Fiesta. But with social media came a ceding of control. Some at the company believed that if Ford was going to move beyond its conservative brand image for the launch of the new subcompact chances had to be taken. Others erred on the side of caution. Chantel Lenard, Ford's Group Marketing Manager for Global Small Car and Midsize Vehicles and Connie Fontaine, Manager of Brand Content and Alliances championed a new approach for the new vehicle and set into motion a comprehensive 6-month social media initiative targeting a younger, ethnically diverse, and urban-based market, called "The Fiesta Movement." In doing so, a large portion of the marketing campaign was handed over to 20 and 30-somethings across America, and Ford had to acclimate to a new way of doing marketing. To what extent should the company guide the activities and messages of their army of bloggers? The case is set two months into the Movement, as the team evaluates the metrics from YouTube, Twitter, Facebook, and their website, and wonder if they're doing everything they need to do in order to make the Fiesta a success with a new target market.

Learning Objective: To examine the variety of marketing techniques in the new social media toolbox; is the ultimate objective to "go viral," or are there other metrics to consider when evaluating a social media-based marketing campaign?

Suggested Citation

Deighton, John and Kornfeld, Leora, The Ford Fiesta (June 20, 2011). Harvard Business School Marketing Unit Case No. 511-117. Available at SSRN:

John Deighton (Contact Author)

Harvard Business School - Marketing Unit ( email )

Soldiers Field
Boston, MA 02163
United States

Leora Kornfeld

Harvard Business School ( email )

Soldiers Field Road
Morgan 270C
Boston, MA 02163
United States

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