SBJ/April 11-17, 2011/Marketing and Sponsorship

Ford gets on track with Brian Deegan

Ford Motor Co. has signed Metal Mulisha founder Brian Deegan to a personal service agreement, furthering the automaker’s push to tap popular action sports figures to market its products.

Terms of the multiyear deal weren’t available, but blue-chip companies typically pay athletes of Deegan’s stature in the low six figures annually.

Ford wants to use the action sports figure to reach young consumers.
“Ford is going through a transformation, and part of that transformation relies on our ability to connect with the next generation, millennials,” said Jamie Allison, Ford’s director of motorsports in North America. “We love the connection [Deegan] has built through the motorcycle jump shows and the Metal Mulisha. That’s another form of outreach to that consumer base.”

“This solidifies Brian in the automobile world, not just the action sports world,” said Bob Walker, Deegan’s agent and the president of Connexions Sports and Entertainment. “NASCAR is the next step, and we’re in the works on it.”

The deal doesn’t include any licensing rights for Metal Mulisha, a motocross lifestyle and apparel brand. As part of the deal, Deegan will drive a Ford in the Lucas Oil Off-Road Racing Series and in Rally X at the X Games.

Allison said Ford doesn’t plan to use Deegan in traditional advertising. Instead, it will rely on his ability to promote his relationship with Ford across Twitter, Facebook and other social media outlets. Deegan has more than 11,000 followers on Twitter.

Ford’s agency, Team Detroit, recently shot a digital advertisement with Deegan that is expected to be released online this spring.

“We’re trying to reach a generation and we need to speak their language,” Allison said. “This is going to be done genuinely and done using the language his fans are used to him talking.”

Deegan is trying to follow his former freestyle motocross foe Travis Pastrana to NASCAR. He remains in discussions with several teams, and Walker expects him to sign with a team later this year.

Return to top

Related Topics:

Marketing and Sponsorship

Video Powered By - Castfire CMS Powered By - Sitecore

Report a Bug