Positioning is the act of designing Scion's offering and image, to occupy a distinctive place in the minds of Generation Y Consumers, whom are the Target Market. (Kotler, Keller, 2006, p. 310)
The people in Scion's Target Demographic, the 17% of Generation Y whom Marketers consider to be Trendsetters, tend to be all too aware of the car company's attempts to market to them. Even before Scion's cars were actually on the street, Scion was publicly hinting about how it was going to be the first car company to capture this elusive group of consumers, which are described as "early 20s, male, ethnic."
What may seem counterintuitive is that many in this group do not seem to mind. They go to Scion promotions because the events are usually free and feature artists and musicians they like. If a Scion logo just happens to be printed on a flier, so be it.
By Positioning Music and Art and another category, like film, Scion is getting that 17% Generation Y Trendsetters by way of their Lifestyle Interests, and not necessarily by way of selling the vehicles themselves. For example, Toyota markets the Scion at music events, and have Showrooms at the events, specifically designed with the youth atmosphere and environment, as opposed to just having a car to look at.
The strategy seems to be working because in 2004, its first full year on the market, Scion had the lowest average buyer's age (35) in the automotive industry, and sold around 100,000 customized cars. Whether the company's subtly aggressive Lifestyle Marketing campaign can take all the credit is debatable, but most industry observers agree that it certainly does not harm the Brand's reputation. (Kotler, Keller, 2006, p. 397)
Advertising professionals realize that the heart of any campaign is the product and the position it holds in people's minds, which is the whole idea of Positioning. Products and their Brand Names are newsmakers themselves. Scion has Positioned its products to attract Generation Y audience, by having a look and fell of being hip. Generation Y is extremely into the music of now, and Scion's industrial-strength stereo fits the bill. The distinctive design and low price (under $15,000) sets Scion apart, and is conducive to Generation Y's desires to purchase after-market products to make them more cool, faster and louder, while still maintaining much less out-of-pocket expenses; as compared to the MSRP of the starter Mustang at $19,000. (Kotler, Keller, 2006, p. 249-250, 310, 311) (Yahoo Autos website)
Is the Scion Product Design its own Form of Positioning?
I absolutely believe that the Scion product design is its own form of Positioning. Let us go back to the definition of Positioning, as it relates to the Target Market: The act of designing Scion's offering and image, to occupy a distinctive place in the minds of Generation Y Consumers, whom are the Target Market.
While the xA Hatchback looks like a conventional ride, its boxy cousin, the xB Van, has the distinctive lines of a World War I ambulance. Toyota hopes the quirky styling will appeal to all those young nonconformists out there. Most importantly, the automaker is gunning for the "Tuner" Market younger drivers dedicated to bumper-to-bumper customization. The Tuner Market is a $3 Billion Market, and growing. To reel them in, Toyota is offering some forty (40) options, ranging from multicolor interior lighting to chrome shifter knobs and clear taillights. The cars also are affordable: The xA starts at $12,480, the xB at $13,680. (Find Articles website)
I believe that the Scion's design is its own form of Positioning, as the design is purposefully placed into the minds of Generation Y, so that they see the potential of making a fun design that is relatively inexpensive, that can be transformed by their own creative and individualized design, which also...