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NEWS13 April 2010

Ford calls for customer input through online ideas exchange

North America

US— Ford Motor Company has boasted of going “beyond traditional market research” with the launch of a website where members of the public can share ideas about the types of features they would like to see in future car models.

The ‘Your Ideas’ initiative is housed within TheFordStory.com, and invites people to make suggestions for vehicle improvements in the areas of comfort and convenience, connectivity, sustainability, performance and safety.

Published ideas can be reviewed and rated by other users, with the most popular set to be forwarded to Ford’s advanced product marketing and planning teams for review.

“Ford is turning to the social web as an innovative way of generating new vehicle features customer really want and value,” said Mark Fields, the company’s president in the Americas.

Chief technical officer Gerhard Schmidt added: “We no longer believe that any one company or industry has a monopoly on good ideas; and embrace the fact that every good idea for our customers doesn’t have to start with us.”

Ideas posted to date include suggestions for heated steering wheels, a dashboard-mounted emergency engine kill switch and remote engine starters.

@RESEARCH LIVE

5 Comments

10 years ago

This is a great idea and I only hope they manage to gain the traction required for it to be useful by attracting people from the myriad social media where Ford cars are discussed. "If you build it, they will come", (like in the movie "Field of Dreams") does not always work. We've been working with several automotive brands across markets globally in doing just what Ford are doing by gathering online opinion in diverse social media, analysing it and distilling out common questions, suggestions, recommendations and comparisons. It makes sense to have as much of this as possible on a website your own but people are going to continue researching their purchase decisions in third party media.

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10 years ago

Here in Italy one big issue is the trade secret: how Ford faces such an issue? Is it simply not bothered about it?

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10 years ago

This is indeed an important story. I've added some thoughts of my own on The Radical Ear: http://theradicalear.wordpress.com/2010/04/16/this-time-ford-really-has-a-better-idea/

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10 years ago

Thanks for sharing, Thompson.

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9 years ago

The Ford Motor Company should consider bringing back the series 150 stepside pickup. The stepside models from the 60's and 70,s outsold most other models.

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