The meeting, which will take place in the World of Ford Auditorium in Detroit's Renaissance Center, is a rite of spring. Last year's meeting led to a resolve to hold the number of titles to approximately 95. But at least one rep wondered if that figure may decrease in the new model year.
"I think they'll use the books that give them the best deals on positioning and cancellation options," said the rep. "If you don't give them what they want, they'll slap you on the knuckles."
Of the $161.7 million spent in consumer magazines in 1992 by Ford Motor Co., approximately $117 million went to support Ford division cars and trucks, according to Leading National Advertisers.
Bob Mancini, senior vp/director of media services at Ford division agency J. Walter Thompson/Detroit, said it's too early to speculate on how the funds will be spent.
Magazines that skew toward a younger audience may have an advantage as Ford and JWT make their print decisions this year. Last month, Ford division launched its first TV image ad aimed at young buyers. At the time, Ford division marketing manager Keith Magee said "the youth market controls more than 20 percent of the U.S. retail market for cars and trucks." And with the upcoming launches of a new Mustang in December and Festiva in February of 1994, that interest in youth isn't likely to abate.
After talks with the reps about pricing, positioning, syndicated research data and readership involvement, final decisions will be made in late May or early June.
Copyright Adweek L.P. (1993)