Ford Invents Adrenaline-Related Dysfunction for New Campaign

Do you like to drive fast? Do you crave excitement? Are you a NASCAR fan? The way Ford sees it, these are signs you may be suffering from Overactive Adrenaline Disorder (O.A.D.), a dysfunction the carmaker coined as part of its latest integrated campaign.

The effort, which takes the form of a pseudo-informational campaign about the fictional disease, is set to debut in advance of the Daytona 500, which takes place next weekend. It’s designed to reach out to casual racing fans and build an affinity between them and the Ford Racing team.

“This was supposed to really make a connection with the fans and the drivers themselves,” said Rick Ross, account director at JWT Detroit on the Ford Cars account. “If you are a fan, you have an enjoyment of speed and thrills, and so do our drivers.”

The online part of the campaign centers around a site expected to launch today at fordvehicles.com/oad. It allows visitors to run diagnostic tests to determine if they have the disorder. They can engage in Rorschach-style visualization tests in one site section. Another test asks visitors to put their heads up to their computer screens for Adrena-Scan brain imaging. Needless to say, most are diagnosed with a case of O.A.D.

The site then takes the opportunity to offer potential “cures.” These include a Ford Fusion, of course, and attending a NASCAR event. The company also offers a chance for people to engage in an aerial dogfight with driver Carl Edwards. Ross said the company aimed to go beyond NASCAR clichés with the campaign.

“This kind of just takes it to a different place and is something new,” said Ross.

The site will get promotion on one of five new creative executions for the TV portion of the campaign. In the spot, driver Edwards talks about his own search for adrenaline fixes and invites viewers to visit the site to assess their own O.A.D. levels.

An online ad campaign will involve placements on SportsIllustrated.com, Sportsline.com, MaximOnline.com and the EA.com network. Paid search ads will appear on both the Yahoo and Google networks.

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