Competitive markets and marketing strategies

In 2003, Toyota developed and introduced a new brand, Scion, into the market.

Toyota understands that customer retention is essential to the company’s long-term success. Building customer management experience and a passion to deliver best-of-breed customer solutions, Toyota creates a product for specific target market. The product positioning is based on personalization strategy (Breaking, Fully Integrated Scion, 2005).

This strategy helps Toyota to appeal to the consumers’ minds with offer­ings. Positioning of the new brand can be characterized by establishing trustworthiness, confidence, and competence for customers. This strategy is supported by the buying process and the pricingToyota wanted to get the jump on everyone else.” (Burke, 2005). This positioning strategy helps the customers to have product within their minds. To address the target market Scion creates customers’ trust to make them willingly follow the company. The goal of the company “is to provide distinctive products, the opportunity to personalize, and an innovative, consumer-driven process at the retail level” (Breaking, Fully Integrated Scion, 2005).

Another peculiarity of Scion is that the product design is its own form of positioning.  Scion design identifies the brand and a model as a symbol of a youth hippie cul­ture (). This method is an effective strategy for communicating with the audience who consider themselves members of a particular group, “generation Y”. Finding that today’s youth are different, the new product is designed for those young people who love speed and luxury. Even “if they can’t afford luxury, they’ll take luxury touches” (Woodyard, n.d.). The car  combines the features of “tasteful design and exemplary fit make tC almost seem Lexus-like” (Healey, 2004). Positioning based on design represents an act of personal pleasure, reflect the owner’s actual or ideal image. For instance, xA has “the 1.5-liter, four cylinder engine is rated at 108 hp @ 6,000 rpm and 105 lb-ft of torque @ 4,200 rpm.  It has the kind of pep that’s ideal for squirting along in low-speed settings” (Vasilash, 2004). To some extent, Scion represents an American dream which comes true for many young people.

Scion target group is “Y” generation who have “an idealistic streak. They want their piece, but they want to do it their way. They don’t believe in “experts,” thanks mainly to the Internet. They want – strive – to be different” (Chee, n.d.). Scion appeals more to their senses than the intellect. Under generation “Y” Scion implies “people ages 9-29, now and as they reach the car-buying stage” (Burke, 2005). The advantages include new vision of product development based on consumers’ needs and ideals. This approach helps Toyota appeal to particular needs of every client.”By addressing lifestyle issues rather than focusing purely on the products, we feel our campaign&singlequot;s spots are unique enough to resonate with our audience” (Toyota’s Scion, 2003). Targeting specific age group allows satisfy buyers’ rational criteria while evoking an emotional response (Toyota’s Scion, 2003). The drawbacks of this policy are that in a decade, kinds will not be eager to buy “a car of their parents” looking for their own brands as well as generation “Y” now. Nevertheless, “the youth car market is already jammed with low-priced Hyundais and Kias. To avoid simply disappearing into the low-margin econobox segment, Scion needs to capture the imagination of the Millennials.“ (Tilin, 2003). Scion has seen substantial growth over recent years, with distribution providing the strongest route to market and retail also providing good growth.

The product feature of societal marketing include the mixture of personalization and idealistic interpretation of a luxury car existing in minds of generation “Y”. Toyota social marketing is based on “hot-looking, hot-performing small cars  and Scion xA 5-door hatchback runabout and the xB microvan” (MacGrew, 2005). Cultural indluence has a great impact on the design and functionality of the products. Pricing strategy is based on the slogan “right image right price” which means that this is not a cheap car, but young generation can afford it (Healey, 2004). These cultural trends help the automaker to see what is in a culture, and develop adverting campaign to reach its target audience. Interactive Scion.com Web site is the major driven force of advertising campaign and social interaction (Scion’s Evolution, 2004). With the development of the Internet, online communities are aimed to attract new customers meeting the requirement of digital age and electronic commerce. This technique proves the idea that everything is made by Scion meets the needs of generation “Y” and their interests.

Based on the present day situation it is possible to predict tthat in the next ten years scion will retain its dominant position as the top car brand expanding its operations and becomes a global player. Its new technology achievements and overall business strategy, potential and capability to support high performance environments are the key elements for the next ten years.

References

  1. Breaking, Fully Integrated Scion Campaign From ATTIK Conveys Marque’s Appeal for Personalization. (n.d.) Available at: http://www.theautochannel.com/news/2005/04/19/043031.html
  2. Burke, M. (2005) Scion marketing targets Gen Y drivers. Available at: http://www.journaltimes.com/articles/2004/10/18/local/iq_3161112.txt
  3. Chee, B. (n.d.). While competitors fiddle with rebates, is Toyota building the next cool thing — on the road and in the showroom? Available at: http://www.autobytel.com/content/research/index.cfm/action/showarticle/AID/138634/startrow/1/year/2003/articletype/1
  4. Healey, J.R. (2004). Scion’s peppy tC has right image at the right price. http://www.usatoday.com/money/autos/reviews/healey/2004-05-27-tc_x.htm
  5. McGrew, J. (2005) New coupe from Toyota’s youth-car family makes us smile. Available at: http://www.autoweb.com/content/research/index.cfm/aid/139209/action/showarticle
  6. Scion’s Evolution of the Traditional Car Buying Process – A New Formula for Success for an Emerging Generation. (2004). Available at: http://www.autofan.com/newsdetail.asp?id=1286&mn=5&yr=2004
  7. Tilin, A. (2003). Will the Kids Buy It? Available at: http://www.business2.com/b2/web/articles/0,17863,515607,00.html
  8. Toyota’s Scion: Designing to impress Generation Y. (2003). Available at: http://www.findarticles.com/p/articles/mi_zd4149/is_200311/ai_n9477016
  9. Vasilash, G.S. (2004) 2004 Scion xA. Available at: http://www.autofieldguide.com/driven/0904dri09.html
  10. Woodyard, C. (n.d.) “Outside-the-box Scion scores with young drivers” USA Today. Available at: http://www.usatoday.com/money/autos/2005-05-01-scion_x.htm
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