Autoblog.com reports that Ford and the creators of the popular reality television show “The Amazing Race” are banding together to produce a five-week series called “Focus Rally: America.” Billed as “the first interactive real-time road rally” by Ford, “Focus Rally: America” will serve as a showcase for the new 2012 Ford Focus. The program will air beginning February 1, 2011, and will be streamed on Hulu in anticipation of the 2012 Ford Focus’ North American release.
“Focus Rally: America” is infomercial and reality show
“Focus Rally: America” is not the first time Ford has delved into online programming – their “Fiesta Movement” is one example – but the company is playing up the real-time reality show aspect as unique in automotive marketing. The rally for the 2012 Ford Focus will pit six teams of two people against one another in a cross-country road rally. A grand prize of $100,000 for the winners (plus a total 10 Ford Focus vehicles for lucky supporters of the winner) is at stake. The team dynamic will be familiar to viewers of “The Amazing Race.” The interactivity element is being touted as “a real game-changer in the reality world,” says “The Amazing Race” co-creator Elise Doganieri.
Watch, follow and play
Fans of “Focus Rally: America” can follow the action in three ways, reports AutoBlog.com. First, new episodes can be viewed five days per week on Hulu. Second, fans can follow their favorite 2012 Ford Focus rally team on Facebook, Twitter and YouTube. Fans can also play along with interactive challenges. The ultimate goal of the programming, of course, will be to advertise the features of the 2012 Ford Focus, where trend-setting tech such as Ford SYNC, MyFord Touch and the Navigation System help drivers conquer their own road rallies.
The casting call is underway
According to Matt VanDyke, Ford’s director of U.S. Marketing, the automaker is looking for people ready for a “once-in-a-lifetime cross-country adventure.” Applicants should already have a social media following and on-camera charisma. Applications including video will be accepted through mid-November at www.focusrally.com or at one of 11 in-person auditions held in Los Angeles, Tampa, Austin, Boston, Denver, Seattle, Houston, Orlando, Las Vegas, Chicago and New York.
Taking a look at the 2012 Ford Focus