Detroit Cars Case Analysis
Discussion Group Two:
Harley Tuck Jr.
Intro to Information Systems
Ford Motor Company has always been considered one of the “Big 3” US auto manufacturers. Throughout the 1980s and continuing even today, foreign companies (especially Japanese companies) began aggressively competing in the U.S. with high quality, lower-cost automobiles. It was this influx of affordable, quality vehicles that left Ford struggling to compete as a quality vehicle manufacturer. Consumer's view of Ford's quality quickly diminished, earning the company the "F.O.R.D. (Found On Road Dead)" stigma. Ford felt ...view middle of the document...
This must also include any changes made in organization and technology. That’s because it takes more than just quality reports to sway the minds of Americans. For example, Ford has been telling us about their JD Power ratings in commercials for many years; however, they lack true meaning and the voice to make it come alive.
-Today, “woman influence 85 percent of all car-buying decisions and account for 60 percent of all new car purchases out right” (Kotler, 2009).
This marketing plan targets those who are considering a new SUV or sedan. The plan is to divide car buyers into three different segments based on their primary focus. Statistical evidence will be used to support each of the following focal points:
* Safety (NCAP)
* Fuel efficiency and environment (EPA)
* Reliability (JD Power, Motor Trend)
To create a big splash, Ford needs the help of a more influential spokesman to increase awareness. For example, Rachel Ray or Oprah would draw much more attention to safety, fuel efficiency, and reliability ratings than Mike Rowe. However, there are no guarantees that stars like this are willing to endorse Ford.
In order to concentrate marketing efforts, the new television commercials will not cover safety, fuel efficiency, and reliability all at once. Instead, each topic will be covered separately and aimed more appropriately toward the individual audience. In addition to television ads, this strategy uses magazines and direct mail to address new quality improvements. Magazines are excellent because of the high demographic selectivity, credibility, prestige, and pass along readership. However, they are also known to include a long purchase lead time, high cost, and no guarantee of position.
Direct mail is another powerful way to reach the target market. Direct mail has high audience selectivity and no ad competition within the same media. On the other hand, direct mail has a relatively high cost per exposure and a “junk mail” image.
Ford vehicles are very different from the competition. They always have a fresh new look and the interior is innovative. Ford vehicles are every bit American as their birth place. To encourage patriotism, Ford should put an American flag emblem on the Mustang grill. This will add more value to the customer and the brand. On the other hand, some may argue that the emblem may have a counter effect by reminding people that it’s an American vehicle.
Another great way to remind people about Ford quality is to showcase the model-T at dealerships throughout the U.S. This will remind us that Ford was the first to make cars accessible for everyone. More importantly, the model-T was well known for being a durable and reliable vehicle. The drawback to placing hundreds of model-Ts at the dealerships is the cost. It will be a very expensive and difficult to find enough model-Ts to complete the strategy.
Granted, this strategy is expensive, not guaranteed to work, and it focuses...