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 I
Discovering 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...