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Ford Image Goes Way Up For Not Taking Taxpayer Money

Posted by: David Kiley on May 1, 2009

Results of a national study measuring the current perception of the Ford Motor Company, conducted by Aloft Group, Inc., a brand consulting and communication firm, show that consumer perception of the Ford brand improved after they chose to not receive a loan from the U.S government.

Prior to the federal bailout, 41% of consumers had a positive perception of the Ford brand, but according to the survey, after Ford declined to take the loan it increased to 63%.

“The fact that Ford did not take government loan money appears to have had a significant positive impact on how consumers perceive the Ford brand,” stated Matt Bowen, president and CEO of Aloft Group, Inc. “Changing consumers’ perception of a brand is typically a slow and uphill process. This is very unusual in that this positive brand perception upswing occurred in a relatively short time frame and under intense global scrutiny of the auto industry. This could considerably impact Ford’s long term brand value.”

Other key findings from the survey:

* 33% of overall respondents are more willing to consider buying a Ford since Ford chose to not take the bailout money.

* 27% of overall respondents believe that Ford did not take the bailout money that was offered because they wanted to send a positive message to the American public. Only 24% of overall respondents believe that Ford didn’t actually need the money.

Reader Comments

The Mad Hedge Fund Trader, San Francisco, CA

May 1, 2009 2:08 PM

General Motors (GM) CEO Fritz Henderson made known his final, final, last ditch offer to avoid bankruptcy. Owners of $27 billion of bonds will get 10% of the company. The unions will get 39% of the company. Pontiac will be axed. Six more plants will be closed, laying off 21,000 workers. What will happen to 3,900 dealers is still up in the air. With the stock now at $2, Fritz has very little to bargain with. Whatever car business survives this won’t look anything like the GM we know. Why do I think we are headed towards a Ford (F) only nation?

Tim Bright

May 1, 2009 4:16 PM

I was a GM/Delphi employee for almost 28 years, until Delphi let me go at the end of March. Thank goodness I'd invested in Ford common stock a few months earlier - it's one of the few bright spots in my day lately. I bought into the company because (in my opinion) their product portfolio is the best positioned of the Detroit 3 to cater to the whims of the market, with strong offerings in every segment, from small cars to full-size trucks.

Bill Simpson in Slidell LA.

May 1, 2009 9:01 PM

If Ford doesn't start selling a lot more units, in a year or two., they will be in the bailout line. No auto company can withstand a prolonged, rapid sales decline. The fixed cost and debt service kills them. Ford has been spending an enormous amount of money on R&D for the last several years, so quality has improved. Outsourcing the auto industry, as some suggest, will devastate the economy of the Midwest, perhaps spawning a new political party. I doubt that the powers that be, will let that happen.


May 2, 2009 7:06 AM

I sold my rather clunker-ish Toyota Avalon for a new Ford Fusion. Best decision I have ever made. They have brought me back from the foreigns.


May 2, 2009 11:56 AM

Yep, 100% true and even more so if GM joins Chrysler as a gov't owned entity.


May 6, 2009 4:56 PM

This article clearly shows that caring about taxpayers does good. IMHO, Ford deserves a round of applause!!!


May 12, 2009 8:49 AM

So, the image of Ford "goes way up" for running out of money in November 2006 rather than November 2008? Go figure... Ford borrowed $23 billion against its assets in Nov. 2006 at a swank party in a new York Hotel. Go figure... If GM/Chrysler would have tried to get a bank loan last fall what does anyone think they would get?

JURM Ben ISman - Ioannoni Giovanni

May 16, 2009 2:44 PM

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City: San Cesareo (Rm)

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Born: March 11, 1944 Teramo (Italy)

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News, opinions, inflammatory meanderings and occasional ravings about the world of advertising, marketing and media. By marketing editor Burt Helm, Innovation Editor Helen Walters, and senior correspondent Michael Arndt.

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