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Marketing Strategies Of Mitsubishi Motors

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Question:

Discuss about the Marketing Strategies of Mitsubishi Motors.
 
 

Answer:

Introduction

The purpose of this report is to demonstrate marketing strategies of Mitsubishi Motors. In this improving technological environment, automobile industry has a clear focus on the hybrid cars. The demand of hybrid car has increased over the past few years. Fuel efficiency has become the USP (Unique Selling Proposition) for the automobile manufacturers. A Hybrid car consists of two different engine for both electric and fuel. It helps to reduce fuel consumption at very low cost and therefore, the demand is increasing rapidly (Lei and Moon 2015). In this report, the chosen organization is Mitsubishi Motors and the selected hybrid car is Outlander PHEV.   

Company and product Background

Mitsubishi Motors is a Japanese automaker founded in 1917. As of 2016, the company is the sixteenth largest car manufacturer in world market. The company manufactures three types of products such as commercial vehicles, automobiles and economy cars (Mitsubishi-cars.co.uk 2016). Outlander PHEV is a newly designed hybrid car of Mitsubishi Motors, which has a range of features. The Plug-in Hybrid technology helps to switch between electric engine and fuel engine. It makes the car most energy and fuel-efficient in the global market.

 

Target market, Segment and Positioning of the company

Market Segmentation

In order to segment the market for Outlander PHEV, Mitsubishi Motors has adopted three different segmentation strategies. The segmentation strategies are Geographic Segmentation, Demographic Segmentation and Psychological segmentation. Following are the discussion regarding how the company has segmented the target market for the hybrid car.

Segmentation Strategies

Discussion

Geographic Segmentation

Here, the company has selected different countries like United States, Australia and Japan. In these countries, the demand of hybrid car is rapidly increasing (González, Cárcaba and Ventura 2015). People are searching for the most fuel-efficient vehicle in order to reduce transportation cost. Moreover, the company has adopted this segmentation strategy in order to fulfill needs and demands of the specific countries.   

Demographic Segmentation

In order to segregate the consumers based on demographic segmentation, the company has considered age, generation and income level of the consumers.

Psychological segmentation

This segmentation strategy helps the company to segregate the consumers based on their lifestyle. Here, the company has identified consumers’ perception regarding hybrid cars (Rusich and Danielis 2015). Hybrid cars like Outlander PHEV have a range of feature, which provides high comfort to the consumers.

Target Market

Mitsubishi Motors has implemented an efficient target market strategy for the newly designed product called Outlander PHEV. The company has targeted the consumers based on the segmentation strategies. Following are the target market of Outlander PHEV.

  • The company has targeted people aged between 25 and 60
  • The company has targeted people from middle (AU $499) and high-income (AU $1098) background
  • The company has targeted tech savvy people of the target market
  • The company has targeted people who lead luxury lifestyle

Positioning

Positioning Map of Mitsubishi Motors

Figure 1: Positioning Map of Mitsubishi Motors

(Source: González, Cárcaba and Ventura 2015)

In figure 1, the positioning map of Mitsubishi Motors has been provided in relation with three major competitors of the company such as Nissan Motor Co, Ltd, Honda Motor Company Limited and Toyota Motor Corporation. The positioning map shows that Mitsubishi manufactures high quality products at lowest cost in the market (Chatterjee 2015). Therefore, the company has influenced product value and consumers’ perception successfully. The hybrid cars of Mitsubishi Motors are specially designed to reduce energy consumption. Apart from that, the company has incorporates a set of features in order to make the product innovative. Therefore, the product is not only increasing consumers’ value by cost and quality. It also has innovative features, which helps the company to attract consumers in competitive market.

 

Micro and Macro environmental forces

A set of micro and macro environmental forces affects business growth of Mitsubishi Motors and its newly designed product Outlander PHEV. In order to analyze the internal and external market forces, two management tools have been utilized in this section such as SWOT analysis tool and PEST analysis tool (Thorelli 2015). It would help to gain a better understanding regarding the market forces as well as the internal forces that affects business of the company.

SWOT

Strengths

·         Outlander PHEV is an eco-friendly product, which reduce less carbon

·         The product is less expensive, which fits within people’s budget

Weaknesses

·         Product quality is low in contrast with competitors

·         The company should keep producing hybrid vehicles in order to increase customer retention (Whyte and Lohmann 2015).

·         Mitsubishi does not have efficient training program for the labour, which affects product quality negatively  

Opportunity

·         Mitsubishi has a good brand image and reputation in global market, which may help the company to increase customer retention (Bungsche 2015).

·         The company can launce new models of hybrid cars in order to influence buying behaviour of consumers

 

Threats

·         The market competition in South Korea, Eastern Europe and China is rapidly increasing (Benmelech, Meisenzahl and Ramcharan 2016).

·         Unfavourable economic condition of US market is a major threat for the company

PESTLE analysis

Political

In order to conduct sustainable business in global market, Mitsubishi Motors needs to comply with legal policies and procedures of the targeted countries (Gaubinger et al. 2015). For example, government of Japan has taken an initiative to limit the number of vehicle. It has affected sales figure of Mitsubishi Motors negatively.  

Economic

Low economic condition of the targeted countries may affect sales figure of the company. Outlander PHEV is the most cost and fuel-efficient product of the company, which is especially designed for low energy usage (Yamashita et al. 2015). Therefore, the company would be able to influence consumers’ buying behavior positively, even during economic downfall. 

Social

Outlander PHEV can be modified as per consumers’ needs and demands. Nowadays, consumers are searching for energy efficient vehicles (Kitanaka et al. 2015). Therefore, it would be beneficial for the company to manufacture new models of hybrid cars in global market.  

Technological

In order to comply with legal policies, automobile industry needs to provide the minimum safety features to their cars (Hatanaka 2015). Therefore, Mitsubishi Motors should pay close attention to the technological innovation as well as security of the products.

Legal

Mitsubishi Motors should comply with the legal policies of the targeted countries in order to conduct sustainable business. This particular external force is not controllable by the company (Fujita et al. 2015). Therefore, it is highly important to avoid non-compliance of the legal framework.

Environmental

Mitsubishi Motors should comply with the environmental policies in order to conduct sustainable business. Therefore, the company has a range of hybrid products (Zhao et al. 2015). It helps the company to reduce carbon footprint in an efficient manner.

Consumers’ perception about Outlander PHEV using Black Box model

Black Box Model

Figure 2: Black Box Model

(Source: Noor, Azila and Teoh 2015)

Black Box model of consumers’ behaviour helps to define consumers’ perception regarding a particular brand or company. Here, consumers’ perception regarding Outlander PHEV has been evaluated. This model suggests that there are two parameters such as environmental factors and buyer’s Black Box. In environmental factor, there are two factors such as marketing stimuli and environmental stimuli (Rodemann et al. 2015). On the other hand, buyer’s black box consists of three factors such as buyers’ characteristics, decision process and buyers’ response. Based on the above-mentioned factors following is the consumers’ perception regarding Outlander PHEV.

The company has maintained quality while manufacturing Outlander PHEV. Apart from that, the product price is moderate, which influences buying behavior of the consumers positively. The product has the ability of reduce fuel or energy consumption. People in global market are concern about fuel efficiency and therefore, it has been noted that demand of hybrid cars is very high (Denk, Bakran and Schafferhans 2016). When it comes to the environmental stimuli, the product has the ability to reduce carbon footprint of the society. The company has incorporated innovative technologies in order to improve the product quality. The company has also provided security features in order to comply with the legal policies imposed by government. Consumers of automobile industry are searching for product with high fuel efficiency (Shukor et al. 2015). Here, Outlander PHEV has duel engine technology for both fuel and electric consumption. It helps the company to attract consumers towards the brand. Consumers follow a six step decision-making process before making the final purchase decision. The first step is problem or need recognition, where consumers identify their needs. In this rapidly changing market environment, consumers need hybrid cars due to its fuel-efficiency feature (Dagci, Peng and Grizzle 2015). After identifying the need, consumers conduct a market research. Here, consumers found Outlander PHEV to be the most valuable purchase due to its low price and high quality. As innovative features of the product satisfy the consumers at the early stage, there is no need of alternative evaluation. The reason behind why consumers choose Outlander PHEV is its high quality built and extraordinary features.

 

Discussing Marketing Mix

In order to increase sales value of Outlander PHEV, the company has implemented an efficient marketing mix. The marketing mix can be evaluated by using the 7Ps marketing mix model, which consists seven marketing elements such as product, price, promotion, place, physical evidence, people and process. In order to gain competitive advantages, the company has adopted efficient product and pricing strategies. The USP of the product is high fuel efficiency, which helps the company to build strong brand image in global market. Following is the brief discussion of the marketing mix that Mitsubishi has implemented for Outlander PHEV.

Price

Mitsubishi Motors has implemented a low pricing strategy for Outlander PHEV in order to attract the middle class consumers from the target market (Kaushik and Pandey 2015). Low pricing strategy helps to increase the product value, which directly influence consumers; buying behavior positively.

Product

Nowadays, consumers are searching for fuel-efficient cars. Therefore, Mitsubishi Motors has provided innovative features. The company has included two different engines for both fuel and electric consumption (Lei and Moon 2015). Outlander PHEV has a 2-litter petrol tank, which can switch in between as per the requirements (González, Cárcaba and Ventura 2015). Apart from that, the product has a range of security features that helps to increase product value in an effective manner.

Promotion

Mitsubishi Motors provides promotional offers in order to attract consumers from competitive market. The company use to attend sport events and other social events in order to conduct product promotion (Rusich and Danielis 2015). Apart from that, the company provides special discounts during festive session in order to increase product sales.

Place

Mitsubishi Motors has a wide range of dealers in global market, which helps the company to distribute products. Consumers have to visit show room of Mitsubishi in order to purchase the products (Chatterjee 2015).

Physical Evidence

Mitsubishi Motors provide physical evidences as per government’s guideline. Here, the company provides all necessary documents to the consumers in order to share product details (Thorelli 2015). It helps the company to maintain transparency with the consumers.  

People

Mitsubishi Motors has an efficient workforce who is able to address consumers’ quarries. Apart from that, the sales persons of the company have adequate product knowledge, which helps to communicate with the consumers efficiently (Whyte and Lohmann 2015).  

Process

In order to improve customer service, the company has implemented efficient training process for the employees. It helps the company to improve consumers’ experience during visiting the stores in global market.  

Recommendations

In order to increase sales of Outlander PHEV, Mitsubishi Motors should consider some internal organizational processes. Here, the company should improve the product quality, advertisement strategy, promotional strategy and the company should introduce new models of hybrid cars in global market. Following are the recommendations that Mitsubishi Motors should consider in order to gain competitive advantages.

Improving product quality: The market is highly competitive and therefore, Mitsubishi Motors should pay close attention to the product quality as well as product’s features. Therefore, the company should purchase the raw materials from reputed automobile suppliers in global market. Apart from that, the company should adopt just in time ordering approach in order to improve product quality. This strategy would help to ensure that the raw materials are not being damaged. The external market analysis emphasizes that competitors are manufacturing high quality products than Mitsubishi. Therefore, the company should improve the quality of some specific raw materials such as steel, rubber and fuel.

Advertisement strategy: In order to gain competitive advantage, the company should conduct online advertisement. Nowadays, this is the globally acknowledge advertisement strategy, which helps companies to reach to the targeted consumers within short time period. Here, Mitsubishi Motors should conduct social media advertisement in order to increase product awareness among the target market. The company should develop video and banner advertisement for its social media campaigns. In case of video advertisement campaign, the company should consider the bandwidth speed of the targeted country. Therefore, Mitsubishi Motors should reduce the file size in order to attract visitors rapidly. On the other hand, banner advertisement would help the company to deliver product information to the targeted market in an efficient manner.       

Promotional strategy: The Company should provide more promotional offers in order to gain competitive advantages. Here, Mitsubishi Motors should increase discount percentage in order to attract the consumers. Apart from that, the company should provide free car accessories in order to increase product values. Car accessories like car cover, seat cover and cleaning accessories in order to attract consumers. The company should communicate with the consumers through social media platform in order to increase awareness about the promotional offers.

New hybrid car models: In order to gain competitive advantages, Mitsubishi Motors should introduce new hybrid cars in global market. The company is currently has a minimum range of hybrid products. On the other hand, the demand of hybrid product has increased in global market rapidly. Therefore, the company should introduce new models with improved technologies in order to retain new and existing consumers in global market. The company should adopt innovative security features in order to upgrade the models of hybrid cars. It would help the consumers to satisfy the changing needs and demand of the consumers.

 

Conclusion

While concluding, it can be said that Mitsubishi Motors has introduced Outlander PHEV, which is a hybrid car with duel engine technology. The car has the ability to switch within the engine as per requirements. In order to promote the product in global market, the company has adopted efficient advertisement strategy. The USP of the product is its fuel and energy efficiency, which influences consumers’ buying behavior in an effective manner. This report shows the external and internal market forces that may affect business growth of the company. In order to conduct sustainable business in global market, the company should introduce innovative technologies. It would further help the company to increase security features of the products.

 

Reference list

Benmelech, E., Meisenzahl, R.R. and Ramcharan, R., 2016. The Real Effects of Liquidity During the Financial Crisis: Evidence from Automobiles(No. w22148). National Bureau of Economic Research

Bungsche, H., 2015. Japan’s Automobile Market in Troubled Times. InGlobal Automobile Demand (pp. 151-178). Palgrave Macmillan UK

Chatterjee, A., 2015. A study of consumer behaviour towards premium passenger car segment in Uttar Pradesh in post liberalization era a case study of Kaval Towns

Dagci, O.H., Peng, H. and Grizzle, J.W., 2015. Power-Split Hybrid Electric Powertrain Design with Two Planetary Gearsets for Light-Duty Truck Applications. IFAC-PapersOnLine, 48(15), pp.8-15

Denk, M., Bakran, M.M. and Schafferhans, S., 2016. Case Sensitive Condition Monitoring of an IGBT Inverter in a Hybrid Car. ETG-Fachbericht-CIPS 2016

Fujita, M., Takeshima, Y. and Yamada, M., Mitsubishi Electic Corporation, 2015. ELECTRIC MOTOR DRIVING DEVICE. U.S. Patent 20,150,333,667

Gaubinger, K., Rabl, M., Swan, S. and Werani, T., 2015. Product Concept. InInnovation and Product Management (pp. 135-173). Springer Berlin Heidelberg

González, E., Cárcaba, A. and Ventura, J., 2015. How car dealers adjust prices to reach the product efficiency frontier in the Spanish automobile market. omega, 51, pp.38-48

Hatanaka, K., Mitsubishi Electric Corporation, 2015. Propulsion control apparatus for electric motor car. U.S. Patent 9,145,060

Kaushik, T. and Pandey, N., 2015. Development and Use of Parallel Hybrid Electric Vehicle Model with Suitable Modifications and Break-even Analysis.Int J Sci Res, 4, pp.1281-1284

Kitanaka, H., Takeoka, T. and Hatanaka, K., Mitsubishi Electric Corporation, 2015. Propulsion control apparatus for electric motor car. U.S. Patent 9,221,346

Lei, N. and Moon, S.K., 2015. A Decision Support System for market-driven product positioning and design. Decision Support Systems, 69, pp.82-91

Mitsubishi-cars.co.uk. 2016. Explore the Outlander | Hybrid Electric SUVs | Mitsubishi Motors UK. [online] Available at: https://www.mitsubishi-cars.co.uk/outlander/explore-phev.aspx [Accessed 15 Sep. 2016]

Noor, M., Azila, N. and Teoh, C.W., 2015. Assessing consumers’ purchase intention: A hybrid car study in Malaysia

Rodemann, T., Narukawa, K., Fischer, M. and Awada, M., 2015, April. Many-objective optimization of a hybrid car controller. In European Conference on the Applications of Evolutionary Computation (pp. 593-603). Springer International Publishing

Rusich, A. and Danielis, R., 2015. The private and social cost of the electric car: a comparison between models of different car market segments

Shukor, M.S., Sulaiman, Z., Thoo, A.C. and Zakuan, N., 2015. The effect of emotional versus rational appeal in advertising on Malaysian consumers’ purchase intention of hybrid car. Applied Mechanics and Materials

Thorelli, I.M., 2015. Aggressive Marketing and Revitalizing the Corporation: Increasing US Competitiveness. In Proceedings of the 1987 Academy of Marketing Science (AMS) Annual Conference (pp. 181-185). Springer International Publishing

Whyte, R. and Lohmann, G., 2015. The carrier-within-a-carrier strategy: An analysis of Jetstar. Journal of Air Transport Management, 42, pp.141-148

Yamashita, Y., Kato, S., Yamasaki, H., Yokozutsumi, R. and Okada, Y., Mitsubishi Electric Corporation, 2015. CONTROL DEVICE FOR ELECTRIC CAR. U.S. Patent 20,150,194,918

Zhao, Z.G., Chen, H.J., Yang, Y.Y. and He, L., 2015. Torque coordinating robust control of shifting process for dry dual clutch transmission equipped in a hybrid car. Vehicle System Dynamics, 53(9), pp.1269-1295.

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