Rather than just selling a product, some companies seek to portray the lifestyle of those who identify with the product and company. 

Ford Motor Company launched a new ad campaign to promote “Truck Life” which helps further define Ford as a lifestyle brand. Rather than just selling trucks, Ford seeks to define the character and life of people who are truck owners.

The full series of 18 videos are below. The most recent video provides instructions on how to cook an egg. Part of the truck ownership lifestyle is to be self sufficient, so knowing how to cook an egg is important. 

This ad campaign from Ford is similar to inspiring advertisements that focus on a topic other than what’s being sold. 

Auto manufacturer Subaru has ads that feature dog owners and outdoor enthusiasts with active lifestyles – biking, kayaking, hiking, snow boarding, running on the beach, and other nature activities. These images help shape perception of who the typical Subaru owner is. Some people may feel an affinity with a company that reflects a lifestyle they identify with.

In the past, truck owners have been depicted as tough construction workers or ranchers with cowboy hats, jeans, cowboy boots, and dust swirling around in the background. Urban cowboys were truck owners who identified with living out west, but drove their truck almost exclusively in the city. Some people will choose to own a truck because they believe it will help them be perceived as rugged and tough.

Recently Chevy introduced a very popular ad campaign for their 2019 Silverado: “It’s a little bit country and a little bit rock’n’ roll” featuring truck owners as musicians, military personnel, farm owners, and everyone in between. The campaign attempted to depict a very big tent where pickup truck owners were shown as a diversity of people.

This new series of ads from Ford hopes to provide a modern-day definition of what it means to be a truck owner. The ads are focused on “Advice, Gear, Skills” in short clips. These are life tips and lessons you might have learned from your grandfather on the farm, or as a Boy Scout. These are required skills for anyone who aspires to be a truck driving man’s man. In fact, the list seems to be somewhat based on outdated stereotypes of what a young man should learn when growing up.

One could imagine that the ad campaign was inspired by an 80-year-old Ford CEO who met a young person playing video games and glued to social media on their smart phone. After a short conversation, the CEO realizes that this new generation of young men have none of the skills to survive in life. “When I was a boy, my grandfather taught me how to clean a fish, cook with charcoal, and change a tire…” and thus this campaign to teach basic life skills to a new generation was born.

We’re 70 years into the future beyond the gender stereotypes that seem to be depicted in this commercial, but to Ford’s credit, women are about equally represented in the ads, as are people of color.

Truck Life – The Manifesto

Truck Life #1 – How to Change a Tire

Truck Life #2 – How to How to Grill With Charcoal

Truck Life #3 – How to Clean a Fish

Truck Life #4 – How to Build a Fire

Truck Life #5 – Types of Work Gloves

Truck Life #6 – How to Identify Poison Ivy

Truck Life #7 – How to Secure a Payload

Truck Life #8 – Own a Roadside Emergency Kit

Truck Life #9 – How to Jumpstart a Vehicle

Truck Life #10 – How to Throw a Spiral

Truck Life #11 – How to Wire a Switch

Truck Life #12 – Own a Pocket Knife

Truck Life #13 – How to Find True North

Truck Life #14 – How to Plant a Tree

Truck Life #15 – How to Parallel Park

Truck Life #16 – How to Fix a Leaky Faucet

Truck Life #17 – How to Hang a Picture

Truck Life #18 – How to Cook an Egg