MINI COOPER: CURRENT MARkETING STRATEGY, DIGITAL MARkETING APPROACH, THE BRAND & ETHICAL vALUES OXANA SRIBNYAK ABSTRACT This paper aims to analyse the MINI’s case study to discover which marketing tools have best served to build a world-class iconic car brand. Using knowledge learned over the marketing course, their current marketing strategy will be analysed in detail. The second part will then critically examine the digital marketing approach of the MINI to answer the question of “what are the benefits to MINI from such a broad approach?” Drawing on the MINI case study, the paper will explore how emotions are used in marketing to build loyalty to the brand. MINI’s successful brand performance, and the spirit created by its brand, the values and beliefs of “typical MINI’s buyers” will be investigated in detail. The paper will also highlight the ethical values of the MINI Company and conclude with opinions about why some car companies put so much emphasis on conducting their business in an ethical manner.
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CRIS Bulletin 2012/02
“The aim of marketing is to know and understand the customer so well the product or service fits him and sells itself.” - Peter F. Drucker Marketing affects everyone, every day, and in all areas of life. It is the key driver for bringing people goods and services they desire, and includes many different industrial activities, including marketing research, product development, organisation of resource distribution, pricing strategies, press and public relations, advertising and personal selling, a long supply chain that ends in “the sale”. Marketing influences more than just retailers and buyers, but even non-buyers, via impacts on the common environment. But to distill it simply, marketing’s main objectives can be identified as the following: “To achieve the highest possible consumption rates, to achieve maximum customer perceptions of satisfaction, to provide consumers with the widest selection possible in the most cost efficient manner, and to maximize the quality of lifestyle” (Peter Drucker, 2006). Many believe the highest ideal must be to improve the quality of life, but as world famous management consultant Peter Drucker noted, the primary aim of marketing is to better understand customers in order to sell them more products. That is why marketers, the actual people funding the marketing industry, measure the success of campaigns in terms of units moved, not lives improved: “MINI’s introduction into the worldwide market ended in 2002 with more that 144,000 cars sold, which went beyond the expectations of BMW Group and continues significantly to our success” (Bayerische Motoren Werke AG, 2003). What drives the sales of so many MINIs? Is it so well made that success comes easily? Or is it something more that they sell to consumers, for example the spirit or lifestyle? These and other questions will now be explored on the next page of this paper. 2. ANALYSIS OF MINI’S CURRENT MARkETING STRATEGY
After WWII, Europe saw the immediate rise of demand for affordable cars for the general public, and advances in wartime production brought new processes of production to the consumer production lines. Across resource-poor Europe, compact car production sprang up, and in the British market, the MINI was born. The project, under the guiding influence of Anglo-Greco car designer Sir Alec Issagonis, launched in 1959 as the UK’s first fuel-efficient car. Highly customisable without losing its unique character, (a unique selling point throughout the life of the brand), after two years zooming around British streets, the MINI launched a sportier racing version developed by legendary track-racer John Cooper, the “ MINI Cooper”, cementing their popularity with the public. Thus this British everyman’s car became known as the masculine, small utility car with...