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A Review Of TVs Motor Company

5212 words (21 pages) Essay in Marketing

02/05/17 Marketing Reference this

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What exactly is marketing and why is it important to you as an entrepreneur? Simply stated, marketing is everything you do to place your product or service in the hands of potential customers.

It includes diverse disciplines like sales, public relations, pricing, packaging, and distribution. In order to distinguish marketing from other related professional services, S.H. Simmons, author and humorist, relates this anecdote.

Marketing is your strategy for allocating resources (time and money) in order to achieve your objectives (a fair profit for supplying a good product or service).

Though it may feel counter-intuitive, marketing doesn’t begin with a great idea or a unique product. It begins with customers — those people who want or need your product and will actually buy it.

People have their own unique perceptions of the world based on their belief system. The most innovative ideas, the greatest products, or a superior service succeed only when you market within the context of people’s perceptions.

Context can be many things, singly or simultaneously. To name a few, you may market to your customers within the context of their wants, needs, problems solved, or situation improved. Entrepreneurs need to be aware of many other contexts, such as social and economic trends or governmental regulations, which we’ll discuss another time.

People don’t just “buy” a product. They “buy” the concept of what that product will do for them, or help them do for themselves. People who are overweight don’t join a franchise diet center to eat pre-packaged micro-meals. They “buy” the concept of a new, thin, happy and successful self.

Without a plan, your entrepreneurial dream is really wishful thinking. While a marketing plan can be a map for success, remember that the map is not the territory. A strategy that ignores the customer isn’t an accurate reflection of the landscape.

A good marketing plan can help you focus your energy and resources. But a plan created in a vacuum, based solely on your perceptions, does not advance the agenda. That’s why market research, however simple or sophisticated, is important.

Introduction

TVS Group

TVS Group is one of India’s oldest business groups. It is a giant conglomerate with presence in diverse fields like automotive component manufacturing, automotive dealerships and electronics. Today, there are over thirty companies in the TVS Group, employing more than 40,000 people worldwide and with a turnover in excess of USD 2.2 billion.

TVS Motor Company is the third largest two-wheeler manufacturer in India and one among the top ten in the world, with annual turnover of more than USD 1 billion in 2006-2007, and is the flagship company of the USD 4 billion TVS Group.

A bike for anyone

TVS Motor currently manufactures a wide range of two-wheelers from mopeds to racing inspired motorcycles.

Motorcycles (TVS Apache, TVS Star, TVS Flame)

Variomatic Scooters (TVS Scooty Pep +, TVS Scooty Teenz) and

Mopeds (TVS XL Super, TVS XL Heavy Duty)

TVS Motor Company – Vision

We are committed to being a highly profitable, socially responsible, and leading manufacturer of high value for money, environmentally friendly, lifetime personal transportation products under the TVS brand, for customers predominantly in Asian markets and to provide fulfilment and prosperity for employees, dealers and suppliers.

12 million smiles on the Road

TVS has always stood for innovative, easy to handle, environment friendly products, backed by reliable customer service.

But two aspects of the market have changed and those just could be the signals that the 125cc bike segment is coming of age as a strong, independent category.

First, the Indian bike buyer has evolved to point where he has a clear idea of what he wants in the bike and how much he is willing to spend while, of course, continuing with his fixation for fuel-efficiency.

Second, and as a consequence of the first, research and development by manufacturers has focused on new technologies to maintain the fuel-efficiency of the bigger engine 125cc bikes and on imploding the cost of the bike so that affordability is not an issue for the entry-level bike buyer who now wants to upgrade to the next category.

Why the 125cc bikes didn’t quite succeed or meet the manufacturers’ sales expectations, with the exception of the Bajaj Discover, could be that most of them were either clearly an extension of an existing entry-level bike or felt like one.

A mere redesign of an entry-level bike with a bigger engine probably was not going to be a very attractive proposition for the 125cc bike buyer who has already acquired an attitude before walking into the showroom.

TVS Apache product overview

The TVS Apache is a 150 cc, 4 stroke engine, motorcycle that assures a maximum power of 9.95 Kw / (13 bhp) @ 8500 rpm and a maximum torque of 12.3 Nm @ 6000 rpm. The glossy body panels give it a very chic appearance. And its brawny engine makes it look very masculine and sporty, which is what makes this bike a hot favorite among the youth.Since the bike is equipped with shorter wheelbase, driving in the traffic becomes easier for the rider. Its suspension power provides a great riding experience even on the rocky roads.The HondaApache bike has won awards such as:

• Viewers Choice bike of The Year ’06 from CNB NDTV

• Ingenious Design Of The Year ’06 from Over Drive

• Best Design Of The Year ’06 from BBC Top Gear

• bike Of The Year ’06 from Overdrive, Autocar

TVS Apache Technical Specifications

Engine

Engine

4 stroke, Air cooled OHC

Displacement

147.5 cc

Maximum power

9.95 Kw / (13 bhp) @ 8500 rpm

Maximum torque

12.3 Nm @ 6000 rpm

Bore X stroke

57mm X 57.8 mm

Compression ratio

9.5:1

Power to weight ratio

101.16 bhp / ton

Starting

Electric and Kick Start

Ignition

IDI- Dual mode digital ignition

Transmission

5 speed constant mesh

Suspension

Front

Telescopic Fork, 105mm Stroke

Rear

Monotube Inverted Gas filled shox (MIG)

Brakes

Front

240mm Disc

Rear

130mm Drum

Wheels & tyres

Rim size (Front)- Alloy

1.85 x 17″

Rim size (Rear)- Alloy

2.15 x 18″

Tyre size (Front)

90/90 x 17″

Tyre size (Rear)

100/80 x 18″

Electricals

Battery

12V, 9.0 Ah (ES)/ 5.0 Ah (KS)

Headlamp

35/35W Halogen HS1, Clear lens with MFR

Tail lamp

5 W

Stop Lamp

21 W

Turn signal lamp

10W

Dimensions, Weight & Capacity

Wheel base

1260mm

Kerb weight

136 kg

Fuel tank capacity

16.0 ltr

Reserve tank capacity

2.5 ltr

The Apache, TVS Motors’ latest foray into the performance bike category, seems painted for success.

TVS Motor’s quest for gold in the bike race began even before the remarkable success of the Victor started tapering off a couple of years after it’s launch. Fresh out of its wedlock with partner Suzuki Motor Corporation of Japan and keen on re-establishing itself as an independent two-wheeler manufacturer capable of developing modern bikes, TVS had carefully crafted the Victor and timed its launch to perfection.

But the raft of other new bikes and variants could not replicate the Victor’s success, and TVS seemed to be headed towards being slotted with the other manufacturers which logged relatively smaller growth rates compared to the big two. However, the new TVS Apache, the company’s latest drive into the performance bike category, has all the makings of a winner.

Fiery successor

TVS’s slowdown during the last about two years was also threatening to give the company the image of being only an entry-level and commuter segment bike manufacturer. The Fiero and its successor Fiero F2 had managed only a barely respectable break into the market for performance bikes.

This market has been dominated by the roaring success of the Bajaj Pulsar, which has by now virtually become a benchmark for bikes in this segment. A later entrant, the Honda Unicorn, has also been managing to post respectable numbers. So, TVS had to conceive, design and produce a performance bike in the 150cc class that could take on the might of these big sellers.

As in the case of the Victor, which was launched to a rousing welcome from commuter bike buyers, in the new Apache, too, TVS has managed to surprise everyone by showcasing its ability to come up with contemporary design and engineering.

On the face of it, the Apache has a unique, stocky, but muscular design theme. The most striking part of the bike is undoubtedly the front, with its broad headlamp cluster and the cowl, which together act as a kind of introduction to the Apache’s design. The Apache’s designers have toiled to give the bike clean lines that merge and seemingly manage to offer one of the most streamlined front sides amongst the big bikes.

Stocky build

Design highlights of the Apache that offer it a more aerodynamic look are the pointing down, arrow shaped headlamp and fairing combo, and the continuation of the design line with a pointed, triangular front mudguard. The design theme then extends onto the deceptively large fuel tank that when astride the bike looks like the spread hood of a cobra, but from the side appears to be much less chunkier.

The large 16-litre fuel tank gives the Apache’s front a heavy look, much like the Pulsar and the Unicorn, though unlike the Bajaj bike, the new TVS bike’s more elongated tank design and the lower height ensure that the centre of gravity is closer to the ground.

Towards the rear, the Apache sports chunky side panels and a signature pattern for the panel to the side of the engine. A pointed tail lamp design, a die-cast aluminium grab rail at the rear and a fairly broad, comfortable stepped up pillion-style seat round-off the rest of the bike’s design.

The Apache’s other build features include a dual cradle chassis, six-spoke, matt-black finished alloy wheels, aluminium die-cast sub-frames, rectangular-section swing arm for the rear wheel and a straight, low-set handle bar that offers the rider a lean-forward position while astride the bike. The electricals of the Apache include knobs and switches of quality that are on a par with this class of bikes. Twin pilot lamps seem to have been borrowed from the Bajaj Pulsar.

Looking good, but…

The Apache’s fit and finish quality is as good and, in some aspects, even better than its peers in the 150cc-plus class. The bike’s excellent, hi-gloss paint finish helps it carry-off the plain look of its un-stickered body panels.

But when you see it on the road, if you cannot believe that the Apache looked so much bigger in TVS’ print ads, blame it on the bike’s relatively small wheelbase, which at 1,260mm is the lowest amongst all the big bikes in the market. And that is why the Pulsar and the Unicorn look bigger than the Apache.

With a much larger 1,330-mm wheelbase, the Bajaj Pulsar has a much better street presence. Whether a longer wheelbase will always be beneficial in terms of better handling and stability is debatable. On the contrary, with the shorter wheelbase for the Apache, handling the bike in city traffic will actually be easier. With its `rear wheel pushed out’ looks, the Pulsar makes a bolder statement compared to the commuter bike sized wheelbase of the Apache.

But the TVS Apache is no pushover in the engine department. With a 147.5cc engine, that spits out a peak power of 13.5 bhp at 8,500 rpm, the Apache’s engine is on a par with the Bajaj Pulsar’s and slightly more powerful compared to the 149.1-cc Honda engine in the Unicorn. The Honda bike is, of course, the `torquiest’ of the trio.

The essential configuration for both the engine and the gearbox in the Apache seems to have been carried forward from the Fiero. Considerable work has been put in to tweak and include other features to give the new Apache engine lean burn characteristics. Though these do not include some of the in-house TVS innovations such as the oil sump temperature sensors and tin coated piston in the VT-i engine, but other technologies have been put to use including intake and exhaust resonators for better low-end torque. The other new feature is a high voltage spark plug that produces a longer flame front, which also ensures that spark duration lasts as much as six times longer (1,200 milliseconds, instead of 200 milliseconds) compared to normal spark plugs.

In addition to the assistance from the inductive exhaust resonator and the digital ignition, the Apache’s primary kick gearbox (starts while in any gear) also features closely set gear ratios for quicker performance on the road. Coated, low friction roller cams and a constant velocity (CV) carburettor are a couple of the other features that enable the bike to offer better fuel efficiency. With a mix of city and highway usage, the Apache should be able to offer a mileage of about 55 kmpl.

For suspension, the Apache is endowed with gas shock absorbers at the rear, similar to the Pulsar and 105-mm telescopic forks at the rear. The Apache’s stiff chassis is meant to provide flex free riding in city traffic and while this can be a positive feature allowing the rider to thrash the bike about in tight situations, it can be a bit of dampener in terms of ride comfort. Braking is via a 240mm disc brake in the front a 130-mm drum-brake at the rear.

Size matters

The TVS Apache is the “Pocket Hercules” of the bike world. It has got the looks and the lines, but size is not one of its high points.

Despite its unique looks, the Apache would seem to have been designed with a performance-oriented purpose, while the Bajaj Pulsar has been designed with a visual appeal oriented purpose. After seeing the Apache too, the Honda Unicorn will seem to severely lack the adventurous, aggressive looks required to woo the customer in this segment.

Like is the case in the world of bodybuilding, bike design and performance is also all about definition and mass. Only in the case of the buyer in the segment that we call performance bikes, the size factor takes on a much higher priority level.

For volumes, the performance bike segment (as we call the 150cc-plus bike category) depends on the purchases made by aspiring buyers who would have otherwise bought an executive bike.

Another point to note here is that despite the target audience being the youth, much of the sales still come from older buyers who are in their thirties.

So, unfortunately, the performance biking segment in India is as yet immature and buyers still appreciate the size of the bike and its ability to offer a macho feel much more than its actual on-road performance. This is clearly a key reason for the continued success of the Bajaj Pulsar.

Its masculine, tall stance and the sleek lines of its front heavy design are more talked about than its performance. Of course, Bajaj has also ensured that it constantly upgraded the Pulsar with new features to enhance its looks and improve its fuel efficiency, a factor that is needed to wean away buyers from the executive segment.

The Apache has all it takes to ensure that the race is a closely fought one. But, after the final lap, the Pulsar would still be the one breasting the tape.

Indians’ fixation with size will ensure that it still outsells its peers.

PRICING STRATEGY ADOPTED BY TVS

TVS adopted a SURVIVAL pricing strategy . Because as other companies going for tie ups and getting power its main focus is just for survival as its price range between 40,000-50,000.Their major objective is to survive in market so as to face intense competition , or changing customer wants.As long as prices cover variable and some fixed costs , the company stays in business . Survival is short-term objective in long term, the company must learn how to add value or face extensions.

TVS said its vehicle sales fell 6.5%, the steepest compared to larger rivals Hero Honda Motors Ltd and Bajaj Auto Ltd, to 339,956 units.

TVS was also unable to raise prices despite higher input costs as competitors offered discounts to attract customers, analysts said.

The company is looking at overcoming the slowdown in the motorcycles segment thr-ough a slew of launches and tie-ups with finance firms, it said.

TVS has launched a 125cc motorcycle and an entry-level 110cc bike in the quarter. It plans a three-wheeler, electric scooters and heavy bikes to return to growth.

TVS PRICING STRATEGIES

Developing a pricing strategy perplexes many CEOs, marketing and sales executives, and brand managers. It’s not surprising really: real businesses don’t always follow the pricing strategy models that business schools and books on pricing strategy present. But there are a few basic guidelines that can help take some of the mystery out of the process of establishing a successful pricing strategy.

We consider that there are four basic components to a successful pricing strategy:

1. Costs. Focus on your current and future, not historical, costs to determine the cost basis for your pricing strategy .

2. Price Sensitivity. The price sensitivities of buyers shift based on a number of factors and your pricing strategy must shift with them.

3. Competition. Pay attention to them, but don’t copy them . . . when it comes to pricing strategy they may have no idea what they’re doing.

4. TVS Lifecycle. How you price, and what value you provide for that price, will change as you move through the TVS lifecycle.

Pricing Before You Build

Establishing a pricing strategy is an activity that should be completed before you start TVS development. The only way to accurately determine how much money you can afford to spend on development, support, promotion and the other costs associated with a TVS is to analyze how much of that TVS you will sell, and at what price. That’s the heart of a successful pricing strategy.

Use the Right Costs

A successful pricing strategy is your means of making a profit today, not of recovering costs spent a year ago. Don’t use the cost of developing your current TVS as the basis for its price. Instead, use the current costs of developing your new TVSs as the basis of the price of your current TVS.

Raise Price to Exploit a Reticence to Switch

Once the customer is yours, the situation switches in your favor. One of the resistance factors your salesforce encounters on a new sale is reticence to switch. An existing customer is still unwilling to learn something new, only now they’re afraid to switch FROM you, not TO you. They would much prefer to add the functionality of your TVS enhancements instead of learning how to use something new. For you, price sensitivity is much lower as comfort and ease factors increase. So you might raise your update pricing accordingly.

Study the Competition

Study the competition, but don’t react and don’t copy them, since they’re likely making mistakes anyway. Let them guide you in terms of where you set your boundaries, and in terms of counter offensives you can launch to deal with obvious bonehead pricing on their part. And remember this as well: any move you make can be countered by them just as easily. Don’t get caught in a no-win price war–which may hurt your TVS, their TVS and devalue your marketplace.

Align with the TVS Life Cycle

How high or low you set your price is also going to be driven by where your TVS is in its life cycle. In general, the farther along you go toward the Decline phase the lower your price should be, since your market will be (a) saturated with TVS and (b) have increased price sensitivity as their knowledge of the TVSs increases. One technique to consider is unbundling support, training and services from the TVS itself, which will allow you to lower price without discounting.

Strategic pricing is the effective, proactive use of TVS pricing to drive sales and profits, and to help establish the parameters for TVS development. Used wisely it is a clearly powerful tool for successful marketing strategies.

FUTURE OUTLOOK – COMPANY PLANS AND PRODUCT LAUNCHES

The high inflation and restricted availability of retail finance will continue to affect the prospects of the two-wheeler industry. However, the company will have the benefit of all the new products launched towards the end of 2007 -08. This will help the company to reverse the declining trend in sales and to report improved results. The company can also leverage the capacity created at its HP plant and its entry into the three-wheeler industry. The Company continues its rigorous focus on its costs through an effective deployment system. Value engineering and aggressive global sourcing projects are being pursued to reduce material costs and also to partially neutralize input material cost increases. Total Productive Maintenance (TPM) is practiced in all the plants to ensure significant improvement in productivity and reduction in manufacturing cost. During 2007-08 Hosur Plant & Mysore plant were awarded the TPM excellence certificate by the Japanese Institute of Plant Management (JIPM). During the year 2008 – 2009, the company has planned a slew of new launches:

TVS Scooty Electric, Scooty Wimbledon Collection & All New Scooty Variant :

In April 2008, the company launched the TVS Scooty Electric, announcing its entry into the electric two-wheeler market. The product has been well received in the market. As part of the agreement with the All England Lawn Tennis Club (AELTC), the company launched two excitingly designed, limited edition scooters, inspired by contemporary, classic and sporty imagery of ‘the Spirit of Wimbledon’. The company will further strengthen its presence in the scooters segment with the introduction of an all-new variant of Scooty which will offer next generation features and styling to customers.

Apache RTR Fuel Injection:

The company will launch an upgrade of Apache, a 160 cc motorcycle and introduce fuel injection technology for the first time in the 160 cc category. This high performance motorcycle offers superior performance of a fuel injected 160cc engine and introduces data logging for the first time in the category.

Futuristic technology, contemporary styling and superior quality will continue to be the focus for all new products.

HOW TO PERFORM SWOT ANALYSIS

The SWOT analysis is a valuable step in your situational analysis. Assessing your firm’s strengths, weaknesses, market opportunities, and threats through a SWOT analysis is a very simple process that can offer powerful insight into the potential and critical issues affecting a venture.

The SWOT analysis begins by conducting an inventory of internal strengths and weaknesses in your organization. You will then note the external opportunities and threats that may affect the organization, based on your market and the overall environment.

Strengths

Strengths describe the positive attributes, tangible and intangible, internal to your organization. They are within your control. What do you do well? What resources do you have? What advantages do you have over your competition?

You may want to evaluate your strengths by area, such as marketing, finance, manufacturing, and organizational structure. Strengths include the positive attributes of the people involved in the business, including their knowledge, backgrounds, education, credentials, contacts, reputations, or the skills they bring. Strengths also include tangible assets such as available capital, equipment, credit, established customers, existing channels of distribution, copyrighted materials, patents, information and processing systems, and other valuable resources within the business.

Strengths capture the positive aspects internal to your business that add value or offer you a competitive advantage. This is your opportunity to remind yourself of the value existing within your business.

Weaknesses

Note the weaknesses within your business. Weaknesses are factors that are within your control that detract from your ability to obtain or maintain a competitive edge. Which areas might you improve?

Weaknesses might include lack of expertise, limited resources, lack of access to skills or technology, inferior service offerings, or the poor location of your business. These are factors that are under your control, but for a variety of reasons, are in need of improvement to effectively accomplish your marketing objectives.

Weaknesses capture the negative aspects internal to your business that detract from the value you offer, or place you at a competitive disadvantage. These are areas you need to enhance in order to compete with your best competitor. The more accurately you identify your weaknesses, the more valuable the SWOT will be for your assessment.

Opportunities

Opportunities assess the external attractive factors that represent the reason for your business to exist and prosper. These are external to your business. What opportunities exist in your market, or in the environment, from which you hope to benefit?

These opportunities reflect the potential you can realize through implementing your marketing strategies. Opportunities may be the result of market growth, lifestyle changes, resolution of problems associated with current situations, positive market perceptions about your business, or the ability to offer greater value that will create a demand for your services. If it is relevant, place timeframes around the opportunities. Does it represent an ongoing opportunity, or is it a window of opportunity? How critical is your timing?

Opportunities are external to your business. If you have identified “opportunities” that are internal to the organization and within your control, you will want to classify them as strengths.

Threats

What factors are potential threats to your business? Threats include factors beyond your control that could place your marketing strategy, or the business itself, at risk. These are also external – you have no control over them, but you may benefit by having contingency

A threat is a challenge created by an unfavorable trend or development that may lead to deteriorating revenues or profits. Competition – existing or potential – is always a threat. Other threats may include intolerable price increases by suppliers, governmental regulation, economic downturns, devastating media or press coverage, a shift in consumer behavior that reduces your sales, or the introduction of a “leap-frog” technology that may make your products, equipment, or services obsolete. What situations might threaten your marketing efforts? Get your worst fears on the table. Part of this list may be speculative in nature, and still add value to your SWOT analysis.

It may be valuable to classify your threats according to their “seriousness” and “probability of occurrence.”

The better you are at identifying potential threats, the more likely you can position yourself to proactively plan for and respond to them. You will be looking back at these threats when you consider your contingency plans.

The implications

The internal strengths and weaknesses, compared to the external opportunities and threats, can offer additional insight into the condition and potential of the business. How can you use the strengths to better take advantage of the opportunities ahead and minimize the harm that threats may introduce if they become a reality

TVS Launch

Situation: Market Adoption

With a new technology undergoing the FDA process, a manufacturer of a medical device that identifies cardiovascular risk sought to target consumers and physician audiences, and develop an integrated marketing and communications launch strategy.

Solution: TVS Launch Campaign

* In partnering with the Customer, AllOut Marketing strengthened the TVS brand and launched the TVS by:

* developing positioning, key messages, and customer profiles based on a review of the company’s strategic market direction, target audiences, competition and customers

* developing a two part communications strategy, pre-FDA approval and post-FDA approval, consisting of multiple different audiences

* creating an online presence targeted at multiple audiences

* creating informative marketing materials with consistent key messages that met FDA standards

* developing and integrating a public relations and advertising TVS launch campaign Deliverables

By partnering with AllOut Marketing, the Customer received:

* a cohesive, multi-faceted communications strategy

* successful media relations and advertising campaign, comprehensive, yet targeted to obtain coverage in multiple media outlets

* integrated communications materials consisting of sell sheets, tradeshow graphics, brochures and TVS labels

Measurements of Success

By partnering with AllOut Marketing:

* All communications avenues-website, advertising, public relations and tradeshow-created visibility for the company and prepared the market for sales of the new TVS.

* The new TVS was enthusiastically received by the targeted physicians

For more information on successfully marketing a new TVS

PREPARATION FOR ADVERTISING AND PROMOTIONS

Before you write your ad, you should know what you want to say.

Positioning: Deciding and Conveying Your Unique Selling Position

Naming and Branding

Supply Chain Decisions

We classify the decisions for supply chain management into two broad categories — strategic and operational. As the term implies, strategic decisions are made typically over a longer time horizon. These are closely linked to the corporate strategy (they sometimes {it are} the corporate strategy), and guide supply chain policies from a design perspective. On the other hand, operational decisions are short term, and focus on activities over a day-to-day basis. The effort in these type of decisions is to effectively and efficiently manage the TVS flow in the “strategically” planned supply chain.

There are four major decision areas in supply chain management: 1) location, 2) TVSion, 3) inventory, and 4) transportation (distribution), and there are both strategic and operational elements in each of these decision areas.

Location Decisions

The geographic placeme

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