Tweet While Driving Hands Free

By Erik Qualman

“Have You Driven a Ford Lately?”  Ford may want to rekindle this old slogan.  With Alan Mulally spearheading the way, Ford is quickly changing its image as a “truck only” company in the United States.  It’s hard not to like Mulally’s passion and enthusiasm.  I was fortunate to be a keynote speaker along with him at a private event in  October.  This was a non-tech event so I was floored by how much he discussed social media and technology.  Fast forward to today and he was on  stage this week as a Keynote speaker at the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) in Las Vegas.  This in itself is a tremendous step in the right direction for an automaker – these CES speaking slots are generally reserved for the Steve Jobs of the world.  While at Boeing, Mulally helped design the digital cockpit and now he is doing the same with Ford.  Some of the more exciting features:

  • Ability to stream Pandora Radio
  • MyFord Touch is an iPhone-like customizable touch screen that replaces your typical “radio dials”
  • Ability to have text and tweets read aloud to you via Ford’s Sync technology
  • Ability to send text or tweets via voice command

Mulally also has a vision of changing Dealer Show Rooms into an experience more akin to an Apple Store.  Rather than having giant lots filled with hundreds of cars/weeds the vision is a clean, open dealership with showcase cars where users can interact via technology and order cars suited to their needs.

What is striking to me about Ford is that many people often ask about the ROI of social media.  With the great work of Mulally, James Farley and Scott Monty at Ford there is something that can’t be measured;  a cultural change.  Progressive thinking from the top down causes this to happen both internally and externally.  The revitalization of Ford is much more than social media and technology, but social media and technology are playing a huge part not only in the bottom line, but also in the perception and culture of Ford; which is often the bottom line of tomorrow.  So, perhaps a more important question is:  What is the ROI on a positive cultural change?

Bookmark and Share

4 responses to “Tweet While Driving Hands Free

  1. FDIVoice has the solution to stop texting while driving. It is impossible to get people to stop using their cell phones while driving. Instead let’s provide a solution.
    Carene Simon
    Call: 877-819-0428 for more information.

  2. These new features certainly make me want to switch to Ford. Especially the Pandora Radio and iPhone-like accessories. Social media=power!

  3. If utility is not an imaginary unit of measure for level of satisfaction, the ROI on positive cultural change is on an increasing marginal scale.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s