Thorr Motorcycles: Perceptual Map Marketing Gary Phillips University of Phoenix Thorr Motorcycles: Perceptual Map Marketing Molded and marketed as Thorr Motorcycles, attributes were modeled after the Norse God of Thunder, Thor—strong, honest, and simply reliable product design, and loyal customers lived a lifestyle of freedom, mobility, and masculinity. Successful marketing, which promoted high- end motorcycles as an integral component of one’s lifestyle had served the purposes for sustaining Thorr with a 40% market share—iconic brand devotion (Apollo Group Inc. , 2008).Over the past months, sales have been waning largely because of changing market demographics —aging customer base, younger generations influx, and competition.
The high-end lifestyle image and pricing was not appealing to the younger set; the time was ripe for seizing the opportunity for repositioning Thorr’s image in an expanding market. Assessing how consumers perceive brands, what factors are most important, and comparing attribute preferences by mapping the various aspects or dimensions is a process for creating perceptual maps—a statistical process, which is just one aspect of marketing research.Determining the most appropriate attributes to include in constructing the mapping model begins with Phase I, Phase II developing a marketing plan after assessing the feasibility for repositioning the existing Thorr machine, or introducing a new brand for sparking interest, desirability, and Phase III controls for gauging the effectiveness of the marketing plan and constant monitoring for a readied stance for making seamless, cost effective adjustments. Phase IDiscovering market position begins with an assessment of consumer perception for Thorr Motorcycles, in relation to competitors by choosing pertinent parameters, which clarifies strengths and weaknesses. Information gleaned from Phase I will provide the framework from which positioning strategies, new product development options, and marketing plans can be launched within budget for ensuring success—increased sales, revenues, market share, and enhanced corporate value.Quality engineering, price, lifestyle image, and cool were choices that approximated scenario optimal selections.
Brand Thorr is synonymous with quality engineering a core value that must not be abandoned. Maintaining quality engineering sustains customer perceptions of excellent quality products, which is an important aspect of corporate credibility. Occupying the mind space of target markets with a notion of credibility is one-step in assuring that Thorr will be a company that individuals look forward to doing business.Pricing is important to most consumers, especially during contracting economies. Cruiser Thorr pricing schedule was negatively viewed by respondents, and an insight was gleaned that pricing strategies would have to reflect these facts.
It became apparent that younger customers had less disposable cash, thus part of the solution was revealed that offering more affordable products, which still retained a standard of high quality, seemed to be attributes for developing a new marketing plan and possibly a new product line.Creating a lifestyle within product design will create a situation when customers will primarily make a purchase based on acquiring a lifestyle, an image, fulfilling a psychological need for acceptance—belong to a group. Choosing cool, is an attribute that comprises lifestyle; therefore, opting for services would have provided an additional unique dimension for deciding to reposition Cruiser Thorr.Added dimensions of functionality, which cover four appropriate mapping attributes will provide more solid footing for making a decision to target a new market segment—the younger generation—with an exciting, hip, affordable machine, which reinvented a lifestyle, continued dedication to quality, featured expanded services, including finance options, maintenance training, and club ride rallies, that would serve to establish loyalty with customers, dealers, and distributors (Apollo Group, Inc. 2008).
Phase IIAnalyzing the information provided by perceptual mapping and other marketing research information must be considered carefully, constructively, and fairly by applying critical thinking skills. How will marketing strategies placed into action effect other aspects of the corporate environment—internally and externally in the marketplace of many eyes and ears tuned in on marketing strategy position and consumer perceptions influenced by segmentation into changing demographics offering new products aimed at younger customers.Will a less expensive new model with enhanced financing opportunities and expanded services erode customer perceptions of Thorr Motorcycles losing touch with a commitment to excellence in quality? The evidence revealed that a different segment— younger individuals influenced by price more so than the aging customer base that has buoyed Thorr’s success over the years is fueling the growing motorcycle market. The younger generation could not care less about the brand image of Cruiser Thorr, let alone purchasing one, which is way out of the preferred price range.For these reasons and the fact that Cruiser Thorr is in stage four of its product life cycledeclining sales—the marketing plan should launch a brand new product, one that sustains the corporate core value of commitment to quality excellence and offers the new market niche affordability, financing options, and enhanced services. This will require a differentiation in the marketing mix. According to Perreault and McCarthy, Jr.
, 2004, “By differentiating the marketing mix to do a better job meeting customers’ needs, the firm builds a competitive advantage” (p. 81).Shifting the market plan with changing differentiation attributes mix now focused on affordability, attractive financing options, and expanded services including social fraternities, the new customer base will be more inclined to view the innovative two-wheeler as a commodity, which offers superior value and quality. Realigning internal corporate processes and unifying the change in focus on a new product goal will cause other processes in the marketing mix to function smoothly for promoting and placing the new product in a position to be perceived in a positive light.Attracting this new demographic and creating a buzz about the new now motorcycle will also sustain the lucrative licensing of product accessories that has been an important component of the corporate landscape and market environment.
Phase III The perceptual map considerations for Cruiser Thorr were appropriate and by incorporating attractive financing options, some of the younger demographic segments opted for the higher priced Cruiser.This was an effective consideration for continuing the Cruiser brand, even though the product life cycle is in its final stages. Assessing the correct parameters for RRoth fell a bit short of the mark. Not including the cool parameter in the control or monitoring phase of the marketing plan for analyzing partial research findings was a mistake and one that I should have considered separate from lifestyle in this phase of the marketing plan. Cool is the in ord and a defining characteristic of lifestyle association by the younger crowd. Using the more efficient engine—increased miles per gallon coupled with lower maintenance costs—in the R Roth machine was a sound move, which not only provided the vehicle for offering affordability, but the technical knowhow provided by research and development has successfully sustained a core value of Thorr Motorcycles—a commitment to engineering quality excellence. ConclusionFierce competition is commonplace in the evolving global marketplace and oftentimes corporations experience performance changes such as sagging sales, which affected the product revenues for Cruiser Thorr, a brand that had sustained corporate values and created wealth for shareholders over the years.
The forces that be at Thorr Motorcycles, moved swiftly to determine the parameters, which could be the cause for sales to decline in an expanding market sector.Management effectively transformed a problematic situation into an opportunity for creating new product lines, which provided a differentiation of marketing mix with greater emphasis on affordability, financing options, refined engine technologies, and enhanced services, which combined to create renewed interest in a product brand that was fast becoming known for a reinvented lifestyle—the image of cool. Capitalizing on market research paved the way for some of the younger generation to opt for the high-end Cruiser Thorr, which was offered with attractive financing and insurance plans.The mix combined to infuse increased sales for Cruiser Thorr, a product in the last stages of its product life cycle and introduce an innovative product that was establishing itself as a popular lifestyle brand, which was just in the beginnings of its product life cycle—a good mix for young and old alike! References Apollo Group, Inc.
(2008). Cruiser Thorr Simulation. Retrieved July 11, 2009, from University of Phoenix database Perreault, W.
D. , McCarthy Jr. , E. J. (2004).
Basic marketing: A global-managerial approach, (15th Edition). McGraw-Hill Companies.Perceptual Maps are visual picture of what the customer thinks about a product. “Perceptual Maps help to compare the brand’s attributes with those of the competitors and to ascertain market position” (University of Phoenix, 2004). In the simulation, the writer created a perceptual map for the motorcycle company Thorr Motors. The perceptual map will help the owners create a marketing plan to assist in sustaining a high brand image of their motorcycles. This paper will discuss three phases of the simulation.
These phases are the situation, recommended and solution.The results of the simulation will be discussed. Finally, the paper will discuss relationship between differentiation and positioning of products or services and the impact of the product life cycle on marketing. Background Thorr Motorcycles Inc. manufacturers over 200,000 motorcycles each year. In addition to manufacturing motorcycles, they sell T-shirts, motorcycles shoes, and small leather goods(University of Phoenix, 2004) .
The company also provides their customers with a number of services from dealer training, motorcycle rentals, and motorcycle riding training.I have just been recruited to the management team as the new market manager. I am going to help the company construct a perpetual map to help Thorr Motorcycle’s Inc. create a new market ingstrategy.
Phase I Currently, the sales of the motorcycle Cruiser Thorr are decreasing rapidly. The sales are Sample Final Examination MKT/421 Version 10 1 MKT/421 Sample Final Examination This Sample Examination represents the Final Examination that students complete in Week Five. As in the following Sample Examination, the Final Examination includes questions that assess the course objectives.Although the Sample Examination includes one question per objective, the Final Examination includes three questions per course objective. Refer to the questions in the following Sample Examination to represent the type of questions that students will be asked in the Final Examination.
Refer students to the weekly readings and content outlines for eachweek as study references for the Final Examination. Week One: Marketing Fundamentals Objective: Define marketing. 1. Marketing a. means selling or advertising b. eans exchanging offerings that have value for customers c. involves actually making goods or performing servicesd. Does not impact consumers’ standard of living Objective: Explain the importance of marketing in organizational success.
2. In 2006, Starbucks ® produced the movie, Ak eelah and the Bee . This is an example of a.
Diversification b. market development c. product penetrationd.
differentiation Objective: Describe the elements of the marketing mix. 3. All of the following are product-area decisions EXCEPT a. quality level .
market exposure c. brand named. packaging Objective: Explain the importance of the marketing mix in the development of marketing strategyand tactics. 4.
Scott Paper uses many intermediaries to reach its target markets; Citibank® uses none. Which of the marketing mix variables is being considered here? a. Penetrationb. Productc. Promotiond. Place Objective: Create a marketing plan. 5.
__________ refers to putting marketing plans into operation. a. Delivery b. Implementation c. Operational planningd.