Secrets and Namedropping in Los Angeles

Disclosure: Ford Motor Company paid for my flight and hotel and treated me to a really fun time. However, all opinions below are my own. As an online influencer, I take great care to be transparent to my readers.

Ford Motor Company and Your Southern Ford Dealers are major sponsors of #FLBlogCon, and so throughout the year, I am often invited to attend Ford events as an online influencer. I’ve traveled to Detroit, San Francisco, and now Los Angeles where the annual L.A. Auto Show is happening.

Now here’s the thing you need to know… I have a big secret: I’m not a car enthusiast.

secret

Shhhhhhh!

I can’t quote you horsepower, braking systems, or the amount of torque a car has.  (I’m not even really sure what the definition of “torque” is!)  And my brain goes a bit numb if I contemplate what “EcoBoost turbocharged engines and a 1.5-liter that is standard” means… because I am just not a car enthusiast.

Fortunately, Ford is not just a car company.

Ford knows that the vast majority of car shoppers are not interested in the “base S trim level” or if a car is “mated to a six-speed transmission.” Instead, Ford knows most car shoppers are kind of a lot like me.

These are the questions I care about when car shopping:

  • What color do I like best?
  • How roomy does it feel inside?
  • Is it easy for me to drive and see out of when navigating?
  • Can I pack a ton of gear/groceries/bags/$h*t in the back?
  • Do I like the stereo and does my phone work well with it?
  • How much does it cost?

And, because they are not just a car company, Ford also knows to answer a bunch of questions I didn’t even know I had:

  • Will the car automagically help me drive safer?
  • Will it let me know when somebody is in my blind spot?
  • Can the car help me park itself?
  • Can I open the tailgate with a wave of my foot when my hands are full?
  • Will it shut off when I idle and start back up when I go to help me save gas?
  • Will the car let me remotely check my fuel gauge?
  • Can I use voice-activated apps like navigation, phone calls, music and more?
  • On a cold morning can I remotely start my car before I even leave the warmth of my house?
  • If I start to drift out of my lane because I’m tired (or not paying attention) will the car alert me?

The 2017 Ford Escape does all this and more and since it is a splashy car, Ford wanted to launch the 2017 model in a splashy manner – and what makes a bigger splash than Hollywood Blvd.?

Time to namedrop… sort of!

Jimmy Kimmel

Jimmy Kimmel’s Theater

So last night I got to go backstage at Jimmy Kimmel Live, a late night show that has been sponsored by Ford for several seasons. Kimmel’s show has helped with other launches, like the 2011 Ford Fiesta.

stage door

Going backstage

Yep, I went in that door, but we were asked not to take photos once inside — Boo! Executive producer Doug DeLuca welcomed us and then we got to watch as actors Daniel Craig and Liam Hemsworth took their turns on-stage with Kimmel. I got this one picture on the sly:

Daniel Craig

Daniel Craig!

And, of course, during this morning’s weekly Blab, I totally namedropped!  (But since none of the stars came back to hang with us, does it really count if I didn’t actually meet anybody famous?)

blab

Our weekly Blab on blogging and social media

 

But it was still very interesting to see what a major production the show is. Jimmy Kimmel’s studios are *slightly* bigger than where we film Blog Talk TV, but I still feel that I should give Kimmel the courtesy of putting him on notice that Ben Reed and the rest of my Blog Talk TV crew are coming for your ratings, Jimmy! Beware!

The Big Reveal

After the show we were escorted across Hollywood Blvd. to the Dolby Theater, right on the very spot where the red carpet is for the Oscars! They had a stage and a big curtain up where YouTuber Meghan Rienks (who has almost 2 million subscribers!) helped Kimmel sidekick Guillermo Rodriguez introduce the newly redesigned Escape.

Hollywood Blvd

The Dolby Theater

Youtuber Meghan Rienks

Getting ready to drop the curtain

After the fanfare, the media got to get up close to check out the car and take all sorts of photos and video clips, etc.

IMG_7046

While on other trips, our contingent has been a mix of bloggers, youtubers, podcasters, Vine creators, and traditional journalists. This particular trip seems to be mostly made up of traditional media. (Think Car & Driver Magazine, USA Today, CBS Radio, etc.)

However, it is interesting that while these outlets still consider themselves “traditional,” they are now busy creating new media like podcasts, video clips for YouTube, etc. (Seems like there’s a little blogger in all of us!)

I’ll be Los Angeles for the next few days, learning more about the Escape and the rest of Ford’s fleet of vehicles. Today I’ll be attending a few conference-style sessions at the Connected Car Expo where the focus will be on car sharing and the future of car ownership.

And apparently, Ford’s surprises aren’t quite over with yet:

Ford Tweets

@Ford

You can follow along @Ford or using the hash tag #FordLAAS. You can also click here to find out about the exciting 2017 model. And here’s the big reveal from Jimmy Kimmel: