Posts Tagged ‘car industy’

Is advertising enough?

April 6, 2009

The power of marketing is a hotly debated topic among strategic management scholars (and, of course, out there in the real world). It remains highly contentious whether efforts to persuade consumers of the newness and uniqueness of your offerings can overpower the reality of the underlying offering.

An interesting case in point is the current US campaign by Nissan for their Cube vehicle. As the New York Times article explores, the firm is going out on a limb and trying to present the car as a “mobile device”. They have built a campaign around a range of familiar jargon from the online world – “search engine, storage capacity” etc – in the hope that this will appeal to a different audience and differentiate this product in what might well be the harshest buying climate for cars in a century.

Here’s some of the promo material.

It strikes me that in the end this is just a slightly quirky and boxy car with no particularly innovative features. Surely consumers want more than an oh-so-cool tagline?

Quirky fact – Shift in auto powers continues

February 8, 2009

Here’s a quirky international business fact from past week: the identity of the world’s largest car market has shifted. No longer is it the US. It is now China.

January vehicle sales were reportedly: China – 790,000 vs US – 657,000.

chery cars chineseOf course, this is mainly driven by the plummet in US auto sales (down around 40% year on year and still falling), but nevertheless it demonstrates the ongoing rise of China as a consumer market (as well as the world’s factory).

At the same time, there appears to also be a shakeout within the Chinese market itself, with expectations of considerable consolidation. The Top 10 brands only account for 66% of sales in China, which is probably unsustainable (especially as export markets possibly shrink).

As the WSJ piece argues, this could be just what is needed to spur on the emergence of a clear Chinese car giant in the coming decade.