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Ford: On the Road with Jim Farley

Finalist in Auto


Ford launched the F-150 Lightning in April 2022 and it quickly became the world’s best-selling electric truck. Ford CEO Jim Farley is leading the 120-year-old company through a major transformation to a digital and electric future. In August 2023, he took to the road in an F-150 Lightning to learn firsthand from Ford employees, customers, dealers, and EV drivers and advocates to create desire for Ford vehicles, experiences and technology. Over three days, Jim Farley drove from Palo Alto, CA to Las Vegas, NV to spark excitement for this game-changing vehicle,  to see how America is putting their Ford electric vehicles to use and to learn first hand about the realities of an EV road trip. Through a social-first campaign coupled with traditional media and compelling video content, Jim Farley’s time on the road highlighted his unique leadership approach and showed American drivers the power and benefits of Ford’s iconic vehicles.


With this road trip, we wanted to show Jim Farley’s unique leadership as a CEO who steps outside of the board room to go and see directly to better run his company. In addition to his leadership at Ford, Jim Farley is a professional racecar driver and a lifelong “car guy.” He brings this perspective to his role as CEO, and a resulting passion for delivering exceptional products and services for customers. 

We created a jam-packed three day schedule with exciting engagements that allowed Jim Farley to meet with a variety of stakeholders: 

The team adapted and stayed nimble to address changing business needs and to deal with unexpected hiccups during the trip – from a flat tire to grueling August heat, and from unexpected traffic to shifting schedules.

With two small film crews, we captured footage of Jim Farley’s engagements, personal reflections from the road, and scenic shots – from Silicon Valley, to the historic Route 66, to the neon lights of Las Vegas. We shared content in real-time across Jim Farley’s social media channels, generating media buzz through his posts and real-time engagement with his followers, and we shared daily recaps across Ford’s internal channels to the company’s nearly 175,000 employees. We also produced a 7-minute recap video from Jim’s time on the road to open Ford’s annual Dealer Meeting to 13,000 Ford and Lincoln dealers in Las Vegas, two days after the conclusion of his trip. 


Jim Farley’s time on the road led to media coverage in the LA Times, Axios, CBS News, CNBC, NPR, Business Insider, and Fox Business with a reach of nearly 300 million. Through this coverage, we extended our reach beyond a traditional auto audience to technology, climate, and business audiences. Jim Farley’s time on the road was recognized by Axios and Memo’s 2024 State of Media & Readership Report as one of three CEO engagements that broke through and highlighted CEO narratives, because “CEOs who walked in the shoes of their employees or customers to better understand their products and business were best able to capture the public’s attention.”

Social posts across Twitter, LinkedIn, and Instagram generated over 10.1M impressions. The engagement with Daniel Mac on TikTok resulted in over 8.5M views and ranked in Daniel’s top 10 TikTok videos of 2023. 

Ford customers, EV enthusiasts and leaders from competitor brands including Tesla’s Elon Musk reacted positively to Farley’s time on the road. This public support led to the reach of an additional 150M on social media. 

Following the road trip, Ford reported a notable increase in F-150 Lightning sales, showing how our social-first strategy, along with Jim Farley’s messaging and engagements reached target audiences. 

Jim Farley’s time on the road provided a wide range of anecdotes that he has used in speeches, media interviews, and formal and informal engagements. He actioned feedback directly gathered from the trip to help improve Ford’s products and services. Following Jim Farley’s visit to Vestas Wind Farm, a commercial customer of Ford Pro, he called Ted Cannis –the CEO of Ford’s B2B business, Ford Pro – and relayed feedback from customers around how they use their F-150 Lightnings for work.


Video for Ford: On the Road with Jim Farley

Entrant Company / Organization Name

Civic Entertainment Group, Ford Motor Company


Entry Credits