Ford just hired Musa Tariq as its chief brand officer. Tariq's new job, which is the most senior creative position at the company, will be to promote and expand the Ford brand across the globe.
Tariq comes with one hell of a resume attached. His previous job put him in charge of Apple's retail marketing and communications efforts, where his work directly affected some 490 Apple stores and 65,000 retail employees around the world. Prior to that, he was the senior director for Nike's social media, and he also helmed digital marketing and social media for Burberry.
"Musa has led transformational work at some of the world's most admired brands, and he is a leader known for challenging convention," said Mark Fields, Ford Motor Company CEO, in a statement. He'll report to Stephen Odell, VP for communications, and Ray Day, executive VP for marketing and sales.
Ford is at an interesting crossroads. As the auto industry rapidly becomes more tech-centric, Ford is doing what it can to offer additional services and options to buyers. It's expanding its green credentials with various partnerships, creating apps that are meant to enter other corners of your life and even entering the alternate-mobility market with commuter shuttles and bike-sharing programs.
What Ford needs is somebody who has experience outside the auto industry, because this kind of change is hard to create from within. Tariq fits the bill, but getting the public to play ball with a brand-new Ford is a different battle altogether.