Social Media Silence? It’s a Killer

This isn’t a total Debbie Downer post…keep reading to find out who is getting a Social Media Makeover, courtesy of yours truly!

Many (many MANY) of you have been asking me what’s happening with the Ford Focus Rally America competition. And the truth is? I wish I knew. Ever since Meghann and I auditioned back in October (“Rally Monkeys“), we’ve been patiently waiting to hear whether we made the cast or not. On audition day, the casting directors told us that we’d hear from them within a few days.

And we did — the directors asked us for some more information and told us we were finalists. SQUEEEEE!

That’s when we started our Facebook page (Katy and Meghann Rock the Rally) and asked our friends to show support. That’s when we started daily tweets, spreading the love for the Rally. That’s when we took time and energy to promote both Ford and this incredibly creative campaign.

And, sadly, that’s the last time we heard anything official. We expected to get background check forms to fill out — we never received them. We expected to hear one way or another by early November — we never did. And the lack of communication has gone from a minor annoyance to a full-blown coup in the FRA finalist community (via email and Facebook groups).

Some very vocal finalists have gone as far to ask Ford and the casting team for answers, or at least a timeline for when we can expect to hear anything. The casting team has been completely silent, and Ford’s only move was to have their social media team take over all of the accounts that had been started in the community. Ford has also said that the cast will be announced in January, which is much different than we’d been led to believe. And since then, they have not addressed the multiple questions — respectful questions, I might add — that have been posed.

Why post now?

  • For the second time in a month, some finalists are finding out via email that they’ve officially been eliminated while the rest of us are left in the dark.
  • I’m losing faith in Ford and in this project, which is depressing because — whether I’m on a team or not — it has a ton of potential.
  • I’m disappointed that I got you, my friends and readers, to show so much support, for something that might be a bust.
  • I admitted when I made a misstep (“My Social Media Mistake and How You Can Learn From It“) — I’m hoping Ford will do the same and change things.
  • Whether or not I’m cast, I wanted to be up front with the good and the bad experiences I’ve had through this process.
  • Justice Mitchell and DJ Waldow inspired me to step up and be honest.

I’ve always considered the casting a long shot, but as a responsible person, I have put off travel plans, been wary of taking on new projects at work and at home and have basically been a hostage to this decision. It’s getting old, and I think it’s unfair. The Rally is scheduled to start in late January — one month from now. It’s cutting it VERY close.

Thanks in advance for all of your support and for being such loyal blends.

On to the happy stuff!

Jess (Run Girl Run) and I are have picked two bloggers to work with as part of our Social Media Makeover project, announced here. We had an incredibly difficult time choosing, because you all had such creative applications!

So, while we are going to keep our plans to do big makeovers for the two winners, we’re inspired to help the rest of the applicants with mini-makeover advice…stay tuned for those.

And the winners of our social media makeover are:

A Healthy J.D. and The Concrete Runner!

In the spirit of what I learned from the lack of communication by Focus Rally casting directors, I have sent emails to everyone who applied — if you think you applied and did NOT get a message from me, please leave me a comment. I really do want to thank you for entering.

Thanks for all your support — through Ford, my social media tips and more. You have no idea how much this blend community means to me!

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  1. says

    Katy, whatever happens, I know that we all were more than happy to give you and Meghann our full-blown support. No matter what happens, I would never consider this “a bust,” and you shouldn’t either! Nothing ventured, nothing gained, right? 😉

    Even though I get that it’s frustrating, if you and Meghann still want this opportunity, then I still hope you get it. Good luck! :-)

  2. says

    Waiting is HARD!! It’s not a good sign for a social media based contest to be slacking on the social media (or any!) communication- not a good sign as to what’s to come. But at least it means you’re still in the running, and hopefully they’ll get it together and you can be part of an awesome experience!!

  3. says

    Ford blatantly exploited the power of a great deal of social media professionals and those who take their network seriously. It’s a shame to watch this medium be abused as it has in this process. It’s prayed on the “what if” nugget of fame, given no communication and lead good people into a false sense of hope by given them nothing. Any by nothing is what Ford will get in return. A because of something as lazy as not reaching out to it’s fans Ford will receive a cancerous backlash of jaded, smart, industrious and educated consumers that will give Ford as much of a chance during their purchase consideration as it did them. Scott Monty’s team is going to learn quickly how powerful word of mouth can be. While Ford might be unwilling to communicate, others will when it counts – while making their consideration list for purchase on their next vehicle.

  4. says

    Merry Christmas!

    Katy: Thanks for taking the time to detail your Ford Focus Rally experience. As we’ve discussed before, unfortunately your experience is not unique. The title of this post says it all: “Social Media Silence? It’s a Killer.”

    What amazes me more than anything is that Ford is touted as the company who “gets” social media. I see this as an enormous missed opportunity on their part. Check that: GINORMOUS. The show was pitched as being about social media. As you know, the “finalist” email that many of us received even gave us “tips” on how to grow our social media profile. I just *love* that Justice took charge and created the Focus Rally America Facebook Group. The interactions there confirmed what social media was all about. The only thing missing was Ford and the Focus Rally Casting Crew. Their absence (or silence as you call it) was clear. There was a brief period when Scott Monty of Ford engaged and answered a few questions that I directed at him specifically. Justice was gracious enough to hand over Admin rights to that Facebook Group to Scott. But, after the brief back and forth, Scott disappeared. Nobody – not once – from the Focus Rally Casting ever showed up. Very very VERY disappointing.

    Ford had a huge opportunity to have rabid fans and folks who had a loud voice in the social media space do some free PR for them. Instead, they ignored us. What is even more amazing is that they are still ignoring us even after we “call them out” on the Facebook Group and with blogs posts like this (and the 2 others I know of).

    Wild, right?

    So much for Ford “getting” social media. What a shame. What a missed opportunity. My blog post is in the works now and will go live once the 6 teams are “officially” announced.

    Hope to see you soon, Katy.

    DJ Waldow

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