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Bill Roth headshot

Green Sells: Ford’s Commitment to Sustainability Drives Sales Success

By Bill Roth

Ford’s sales growth is proving that competitively priced, well-designed products that are more sustainable will outsell less-sustainable products. Ford’s line-up of fuel-efficient cars and trucks that deliver lower tail pipe emissions are selling at a record pace. In June 2013, Ford achieved a year-over-year 13 percent sales increase. That is Ford’s best sales performance since 2006. How hot is Ford? They have captured the number one position on the BrandIndex with more buzz than Amazon, YouTube or last years’s champ, Subway!

Ford’s sustainability commitment

Ford is a corporate leader in designing sustainable products and has pioneered vehicle designs that align with scientific analysis on the reduced level of greenhouse emissions required to address climate change. This commitment begins with Chairman Bill Ford and CEO Alan Mulally who have made sustainability one of Ford Motor Company's four corporate attributes. Their commitment to fuel economy and reduced emissions now permeates Ford's product offerings. From small cars to hybrids to electric cars to full size trucks, Ford is winning customers by selling solutions to pump price pain and climate change.

America wins with Ford

Ford is stealing market share from Asian car companies that used to own markets like California.
Ford’s market share is up almost a full percentage point on the East and West Coasts. They are growing faster than any U.S. automotive brand. Today San Francisco, followed closely by Seattle, is Ford’s fastest growing small car market. In terms of total sales, the Los Angeles region is now Ford’s largest market for small cars.

Ford’s success is mirrored across the auto industry. Americans this year are projected to buy 16 million new vehicles. That sales level has not been achieved since the 2008 Great Recession. Much of the industry’s sales success is the result of strong consumer interest in fuel efficient small cars, compact SUVs and hybrid cars. The result is that the U.S. is successfully reducing its gasoline consumption by 8.6 million gallons per day! That is money saved and emissions reduced.

Ford selling their hybrid cars within 15 days of dealer delivery

In the auto industry, a car that moves from a dealer’s lot into a customer’s garage in 60 days is considered a good seller. Ford’s hybrids are selling within 15 days! Ford sold more hybrid cars through May 2013 than they sold in all of 2012.

Ford took a gamble in placing hybrid technology across much of its product line rather than designing a distinctive product like Toyota’s Prius. Ford now offers hybrid technology in their Fiesta, Focus, Fusion and C-Max vehicles. The gamble has paid off with examples like the Ford Fusion Hybrid having almost quadrupled last year’s sales levels and the newly launched Lincoln MKZ hybrid achieving 70 percent sales growth over last year’s volume.

Interview: John Viera, Ford Global Sustainability Director

In the following interview at the Sustainable Brands 2013 conference, John Viera, Ford’s Global Sustainability Director, explains more about how Ford is using sustainability to win customers.

Bill Roth is an economist and the Founder of Earth 2017. He coaches business owners and leaders on proven best practices in pricing, marketing and operations that make money and create a positive difference. His book, The Secret Green Sauce, profiles business case studies of pioneering best practices that are proven to win customers and grow product revenues. Follow him on Twitter: @earth2017

Bill Roth headshotBill Roth

Bill Roth is a cleantech business pioneer having led teams that developed the first hydrogen fueled Prius and a utility scale, non-thermal solar power plant. Using his CEO and senior officer experiences, Roth has coached hundreds of CEOs and business owners on how to develop and implement projects that win customers and cut costs while reducing environmental impacts. As a professional economist, Roth has written numerous books including his best selling The Secret Green Sauce (available on Amazon) that profiles proven sustainable best practices in pricing, marketing and operations. His most recent book, The Boomer Generation Diet (available on Amazon) profiles his humorous personal story on how he used sustainable best practices to lose 40 pounds and still enjoy Happy Hour!

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