1. How does market research influence the Harley Davidson’s decision in future locations?
It is very important for an organization to understand political, economical and social condition before launching its products in the market of any country. Market research provides detail about economic condition of a country along with the purchasing capacity of the people. Political conditions of countries like government stability and policies on foreign companies also play an important role in business expansion. Consumer preferences and behavior vary from place to place and Harley Davidson gained complete set of information about the consumer preferences and needs with the help of market research. Market research provides information about various factors that influence the company’s decision for business expansion in a specific country. It provides information about the countries that are price sensitive; prefer fuel efficient vehicles, more conscious about looks and design of vehicles. Research also provides the information about the class of people which is required to be targeted and what will be the tentative market size. In some countries people takes Harley Davidson’s products as a symbol of prestige.
2. Are the approaches evident at Burberry and Coach similar? Are they competitors?
Burberry and Coach both are very successful and recognized brand names in the luxury fashion market. Both the companies focus their market research in understanding the consumer behavior. Market research helped them in understanding needs of consumers, preference towards looks, color and size preferences etc. Burberry with the help of extensive research targets the price point in accessories market that is slightly above the coach and a bit lower than Gucci. In fashion industry it is very important to be innovative and keep providing new trends to the market. A constant consumer research helps both the brands in not only fulfilling their needs but also in managing their retail stores. Companies reduce their operation cost with the help of effective inventory management.
3.(A). Coach's brand positioning cab be described as "accessible luxury". What do you think this means?
Management of the Coach realized that the biggest strength of the Coach is its price point hence they portioned the brand as an “accessible luxury brand”. Coach products are not inferior or lower in quality from its competitors in any manner. The brand is providing high quality products with great variety and innovation as their competitors but at lower price. In other words we can say that “accessible luxury brand” means luxury at affordable prices.
(B). In light of the current global economic downturn, will Lew Frankfort's strategy for expanding in China need to be revised?
In current Global economic conditions Coach is required to take very careful steps. The company is planning to expand its business in china by adding more locations in the list. Before launching self managed retail stores an initial market testing should be done. Company can look for shop-in-shop concept and cross selling techniques for initial market testing. We can take the example of Coach Deal with Tmall for operating an online store for one month in China to see the response of people.
(c). Assess Lew's Frankfort decision to give the go-ahead to the poppy line.
Coach launched a new product line called Poppy, In the year 2009 during the time of recession. Poppy products were priced lower than normal Coach Products are designed to serve consumer need even at the time of recession. The decision taken by Lew Frankfort to launch Poppy was a right decision taken at right time. The company noticed a very week sales which was increased drastically after launch of Poppy hence it was a good decision.
(D). How is coach using the internet as a marketing tool for the poppy launch?
Coach introduced online shopping for the first time to sale Poppy product. Coach used online medium very effectively to provide a huge platform for selling. It sold Poppy products through face book and twitter. Company formed partnership with various blogs to promote its products. Coach also launched campaign on yahoo.com and introduced campaign like designing “are you a poppy girl” scrape book page on its official website. This aggressive way of marketing was very much appreciated by consumers.
Burberry. (n.d.). Retrieved February 6, 2012, from www.burberryplc.com: http://www.burberryplc.com/bbry/corporateprofile/markris/
Corporate Design Foundation. (n.d.). Retrieved February 6, 2012, from www.cdf.org: http://www.cdf.org/issue_journal/harley-davidson_marketing_an_american_icon.html
T.Levitt. (1975). Marketing Myopia. Harvard Business Review .