updated 7/20/2010 7:03:21 PM ET 2010-07-20T23:03:21

Ford Motor Co. plans to launch its marketing campaign for the Ford Explorer next week through an unusual venue: Facebook.

Ford's global marketing chief Jim Farley said Tuesday that instead of launching the new sport utility vehicle at an auto show, it will be introduced on Facebook and in online ads starting Monday. The company also plans events in several cities.

Farley said marketing of the new Ford Fiesta, which also was done mostly online, encouraged the company to explore new methods.

The 2011 Ford Explorer goes on sale later this year. Pricing has not yet been announced. The launch is extremely important to Ford, since the Explorer has strong name recognition. Farley says it's the second-most recognized Ford vehicle after the F-150 pickup.

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