The automotive industry has had its share of high and low moments. As the economy takes a tumble, automobile manufacturers feel the impact of that tumble. However, when things are going good with the economy, the demand for a new, innovative, reliable, and efficient vehicle becomes a booming business. But a good economy doesn’t always guarantee success. What additional steps must a company take? The answer is simple. A company must scan its market and prepare a marketing strategy that appeals to that intended market. For some companies, it takes a tremendous amount
of persuading and influencing to get individuals to navigate towards their specific product. For others, it is easy to rely on the legacy and foundation of your company to simply and efficiently move your products. Two automotive companies that share both similarities and differences in the automotive industry are Jaguar and Ford. Both in a very distinct league to themselves, these two automobile manufacturers know what the customers want and they deliver. Jaguar, a company that continues to push boundaries and go above and beyond for their customers, stays true to the foundation that was set forth by it’s founder over 90
years ago. The company realizes that innovation and efficiency are important, but they also realize that customer satisfaction and longevity are just as important in maintaining and continuing to thrive as a successful business. Being one of the most expensive automobile manufacturers, Jaguar does not rely on mainstream media to promote or inform the general population of its cars. Jaguar knows its market and it focuses specifically on that market. Although based in Britain, the innovative automobile maker has branched out into over 100 markets worldwide, one of which includes the United States. 2
“Our role is to deliver the team’s design intention, every time with every car. It’s our job to achieve a strict specification and, for me, quality is the ability to repeatedly achieve that specification. It’s that attention to detail that we instill here. We’re building luxury cars. ”1 Coming directly from Grant McPherson, the director of operations for Jaguar, it is clearly evident that there is a lot of attention to detail and perfecting every car that is put on the market. This is the type of information that customers want to know. Ford Motor Company is similar in this category in the sense that it too focuses a great deal on what
customers want to know. The difference comes with marketing and being a common name in the general public. Ford goes above and beyond to create commercials, ad campaigns, etc. to ensure that the public nationwide knows about its products. While the prices are drastically cheaper than what a car company such as Jaguar charges, the cost of marketing and promotion only adds to the cash flow going out of the company. Also, both companies focus a great deal on producing vehicles that are environmentally friendly and Ford is, by far, one of the leading automobile manufacturers who continue to raise the bar in this category.
“At Ford, we structure our core business model around using resources responsibly to create long-term value as a corporate citizen and global competitor. ”2 Ford knows that to keep customers, they have to value and protect them. This not only happens while making the vehicles. It continues once the vehicles are purchased and on the road. 3 Two recommendations that I would suggest to Ford would be to ensure that all vehicles are thoroughly inspected prior to placing them on the market and to implement a policy that produces quality customer service 100 percent of the time. I would suggest the
inspection because Ford customers give a lot of complaints about things going wrong with their vehicle in such a short amount of time. Also, Ford has recalled a few vehicles for various reasons including: fuel leaks, defective child safety locks, loss of power to wheels while driving, and a host of other issues. 3 By thoroughly inspecting the vehicles, Ford could potentially avoid being sued in the event that a customer is hurt or killed resulting from a defect of one of its vehicles. The inspection of the vehicles can be pitched to the customers in marketing and ad campaigns so that current and potential
customers can know how diligently Ford works to ensure the safety of its vehicles. This could create a stronger company in the sense that customers feel safe and they feel as if the company is looking out for their safety above anything. As far as the customer service is concerned, I made this suggestion because I am a Ford customer and I don’t always get the best service when I go to a Ford dealership for service. This could have damaging effects on the company if I were to consistently talk bad about and degrade the company because of horrible service at one location. Enough detraction from one customer could
create a larger movement when other individuals get involved. No matter what marketing strategy they would potentially use, there could be negative connotations attached with it if people are talking about how horrible “Ford” is when they are only referring to a specific dealership. Consumer-oriented promotions can help a company both short and long term. “The goal of consumer-oriented sales promotion is to get new and existing customers to 4 try or buy products. ”4 (Boone/Kurtz, 2013, p. 404) Many companies use techniques such as sales, coupons, or rebates to attract customers to their products. Companies also use
samples to give the customer a small portion of the actual product to try to get them to purchase the actual product. Coupons are great in the sense that it allows customers to get a discount on some of their favorite items from food, clothing, to other personal items. The downside to coupons is that customers will begin to rely on the amount of money that they are saving and not actually showing loyalty to the brand in which they are purchasing. Also, when a company is consistently putting their items on sale, a customer could begin to follow the trend and versus buying it the regular price, they would wait
until the sale happens to get it at a cheaper price. This could potentially diminish the amount of cash flow coming into the actual company. To assist the company in the long run, I would definitely suggest using coupons around periods that are not holidays and doing more product samples to attract potential customers. These are my suggestions because more revenue is brought into the company around holidays so maximizing the profit of the company would be an excellent idea. As far as the samples are concerned, there is a potential to attract the customers if you provide them with a sample beforehand.
“Three of every four consumers who receive samples with try them. ”5 This gives companies a greater advantage and provides the potential to garner more revenue and a larger customer base. Pricing decisions are typically made using one or all of the four pricing objectives. The objectives are: profitability, volume, meeting competition, and prestige. The price of a product not only determines the revenue that the company is bringing in, it also determines the cash flow going out. In my opinion, Ford has used a combination of 5 profitability and meeting competition.
Ford knows that as the price goes up, the demand for the product goes down. Other companies in the automotive industry can definitely take into consideration economic and demand trends. Although the economy is at a “secure” place, many customers still have to stick to strict budget and prefer great quality at a low cost. Competition is going to always be around so by taking the extra initiative to view the market and the economy and properly budget the company’s finances to created low-cost, reliable vehicles for customers, this could definitely set a company apart from any other company.
In addition, a company could get the publics opinion on what they are seeking in a vehicle. Not saying that the company will be able to cater to everyone’s needs, but by putting forth the effort to get the publics opinion about what they want could place the company in a league of their own. Advertising is critical to any company wanting to move a product. In the automotive industry, advertising your product can take time to plan out because you want to reach the masses and ensure your product is being seen and admired by as many people as possible. The most effective advertising medium for a company in the
automotive industry would be placing ads on television and on social media websites. These are both effective because commercials make up a very large percentage of cable TV. Every few minutes a company’s product would be seen by millions of people. Out of those millions of people, you never know how many would be interested in the product if the advertising was done correctly. By placing ads on social media websites, a company can see an increase in sales to a new demographic. Many younger individuals live their lives on social networking sites. If they see an ad enough times, they could inform their
parents or, if they are independent, they could purchase the product for themselves. This 6 opens the door for more revenue and a greater, more loyal customer base if you touch on their every want and need and present it in a way that is convenient for them to review the information that you are presenting. It is evident that marketing strategies go beyond just telling the public about your product. A company must invest time and money into promoting and pricing their products in a way that the customer can’t help but to navigate towards the product. Although having a product at a low cost doesn’t always guarantee that a customer will
purchase it, it allows the customer an option that fits their budget and that, hopefully, is efficient and reliable. 7 WORKS CITED 1. ) http://www. jaguarusa. com/about-jaguar/jaguar-business/quality. html#skip-tertiary 2. ) http://corporate. ford. com/our-company/sustainability 3. ) http://www. edmunds. com/recalls/ford. html? mktcat=ford-escape-recall&kw=2013+ford+escape+recall&mktid=ga62620488&gclid=C KW2hcTcg70CFchFMgod6BgARQ 4. ) Boone, L. & Kurtz, D. (2013) Contemporary Business (15th ed. ). p. 404 5. ) Boone, L. & Kurtz, D. (2013) Contemporary Business (15th ed. ). p. 406 8