Throwing compost in the face of the soulless, self-interested and pathologically sociopathic Cadillac demographic… Ford demonstrates why it is that they’ll destroy GM

As I’ve never had an opportunity to use the YouTube Doubler, I couldn’t let this opportunity pass.

On the left is Cadillac’s universally derided “Poolside” ad, which Car and Driver, as you may recall, said was tailor made for “xenophobic nationalists.” And, on the right, is a parody commercial released online today by Ford’s local ad agency, Team Detroit, featuring Pashon Murray, the founder of the urban compost company Detroit Dirt. (I’m told it has Ford’s tacit approval.) It’s totally brilliant.

YouTube Doubler

[If you can’t see both videos playing simultaneously, given the width of this column, click here and watch it at YouTube Doubler. It’s really cool to see them running side by side.]

I have to hand it to Cadillac. They know their (pasty, old and angry) audience. They know that, in order to sell “green” vehicles to rich, old, white men, they can’t rely on images of smiling bi-racial kids and pollution-free skies. They know that, to be successful in this space, they need to reposition environmentalism as pure self-interest. And that’s what they did with the “Poolside” campaign. They distilled the id of the narcissistic American CEO and put him behind the wheel of an electric vehicle spouting nonsense about how all the other countries in the world aren’t fit to wax the taint of the United States. It was roundly mocked, but I suspect that it accomplished what they’d wanted it to. It got people talking about Cadillac, and it conveyed the notion that their new line of electric cars weren’t for the tree-hugging pansies of the world, but the brash and the powerful. In so doing, though, they set Ford up beautifully, and that’s what we saw today with Team Detroit’s “Anything is Possible” ad, featuring a black, female CEO who actually gives a fuck about the world she inhabits. And this, my friends, is why Ford is going to win. They understand the demographic shift taking place in America, and they’re targeting the next generation.

And here are the individual ads.



It’s worth pointing out, I think, that GM, the owner of the Cadillac brand, took the U.S. taxpayer bailout, while Ford did not. Judging from these two very different campaigns, you’d never guess that, right?

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  1. Mr. X
    Posted March 28, 2014 at 8:31 am | Permalink

    Clever ad, but both sides are manipulating people to sell cars that are killing the world.

  2. 734
    Posted March 28, 2014 at 2:26 pm | Permalink

    That woman looks awesome. Interview her.

  3. Ben
    Posted March 28, 2014 at 7:01 pm | Permalink

    I think the fact that Ford didn’t take the money and GM did goes hand in hand with this. GM’s ad is about pretending help and privilege don’t exist. Ford’s is about ACTUALLY doing something well and giving back. :)

    And yes, it would be rad to interview her!

  4. John Galt
    Posted March 28, 2014 at 7:05 pm | Permalink

    “The other countries in the world aren’t fit to wax the taint of the United States.”

    Finally we can agree on something.

  5. DaveM
    Posted March 30, 2014 at 10:19 am | Permalink

    Mr. X nailed it. Loved the spoof until *she* gets into *her* brand new car. Suddenly the difference between them vanishes.

  6. General Demitrios
    Posted March 30, 2014 at 11:22 am | Permalink

    Why not stop hating people because they are young/old/rich/poor/ black/white/Ypsi/A2? Why not stop hating and judge things on their merits. The Caddy is a very efficient luxury car., and Detroit Dirt is very rich soil. It’s all good.

    Don’t blow too much air up Fords ass. Part of the reason they did not take a government loan is that the CEO would not take a pay cut. He made 22 million last year, and pays tax at Mitt Romney rates. That is not good.

  7. Emma
    Posted March 30, 2014 at 11:50 am | Permalink

    The Cadillac ad is accurate. You have to be rich to buy one. Most people on earth also can’t purchase a new Ford vehicle. I wouldn’t be surprised if they worked together to create these ads and controversy for free ad time, people love to pick sides.

  8. Posted March 30, 2014 at 12:02 pm | Permalink

    I parked next to one of these Cadillacs yesterday in Ann Arbor, and I was tempted to hang out and wait for the owner to return so that I could do an interview. I couldn’t convince my daughter, though.

  9. Posted March 30, 2014 at 12:35 pm | Permalink

    I didn’t mean to come across as hating GM or Cadillac. I’m sure they’re good cars. And I appreciate the fact that people are finally beginning to work toward electrification, even if a great deal of our electricity still comes from the burning of coal. And I didn’t mean to suggest that Ford was the most awesome company in the world. Again, I was just talking about ad strategy. From what I’ve seen, Ford seems to have a better handle on the changing face of America. That was my only point.

  10. Kristin
    Posted March 31, 2014 at 8:31 am | Permalink

    I think about how Ford didn’t take the bailout money all of the time. I don’t begrudge the other companies the assistance, but I really respect Ford for not doing it. I also wonder if people from SE Michigan feel some allegiance to Ford because so many of our recent ancestors were around when he was.

  11. Liz DMG
    Posted March 31, 2014 at 9:45 am | Permalink

    My understanding is that the ad wasn’t actually done by Ford. It was by an organization called Detroit Dirt that used a Ford as part of its parody.

  12. double anonymous
    Posted March 31, 2014 at 12:42 pm | Permalink

    It was done by Team Detroit with the approval of Ford. Team Detroit is their ad firm.

  13. Sam
    Posted April 1, 2014 at 4:03 pm | Permalink

    If that wasn’t enough, GM was also caught killing its customers.

  14. Christa
    Posted August 23, 2014 at 9:38 am | Permalink

    It’s good to see them bounce back and redeem themselves after having supported the Nazis.

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