Moms Back Minivan

Ford Motor Co. is gearing up for the spring selling season, prime time for moving minivans, with a new campaign for its Ford Windstar.
Two 30-second spots break today on network TV and will air through August, when the 1999 model year is over. Five one-page print ads and a two-page spread are breaking in a variety of weeklies and monthlies in February. All of the work is from J. Walter Thompson, Detroit, the Ford division’s national agency.
A separate, 60-second corporate Windstar spot from Ogilvy & Mather, New York and Detroit, broke earlier this month on cable TV stations and will air over the next three months.
Media for all efforts will be placed by Ford Motor Media, a JWT unit. Ford spent $27 million on Windstar ads through October of 1998, per Competitive Media Reporting.
The corporate TV spot and one of the print ads feature a group of more than 30 mothers who worked on Windstar product development and whose input resulted in some of its unique family-friendly features. “We think it’s really going to hit home with other moms,” said Denise Orcher, Windstar brand manager.
The two divisional spots continue the Ford division’s “storyteller” theme and feature actor John Corbett of “Northern Exposure.”
The campaign seeks to emphasize the minivan’s strong government crash-test safety record, but also play up some of its convenience features, Orcher said.
While the majority of the effort is geared toward parents–the vehicle’s primary target–one print ad focuses on empty nesters who might also enjoy the vehicle’s amenities.