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Mini VS Audi Marketing Essay

Overview:

The automobile industry has forever been in the limelight for just about everyone, from cars that are easily affordable like the Ford  or the Volkswagen there are cars that are made to order as royal  as the Rolls-Royce. But among these are two distinct cars that have made quite a mark in the industry as well as with their target audiences, one has a fan following while the other is a keeper’s piece.

British Motor Company launched its Mini in the year 1959, it was invented as a challenge given to Sir Alec Illiginos, to accommodate adults in a small car that would also be economical to use and have the capacity to fit 4 adults, and big enough to have them travel in it without having any problems, therefore Sir Alec designed the Mini. The Mini has been the heartthrob of housewives initially but later on it became the newest trend when formula one driver and star John Cooper designed the first Mini (here designed does not refer to inventing), this was the first time that anyone had customized a Mini. After that a series of cars, from different stripes to all sorts of flags were printed on the roofs

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of the Mini’s. The younger generation loved it, as this was easily accessible, as these minis are not very costly, they aren’t cheap either, but still they come in the budgets of many who can’t go for other expensive cars.

The Audi, which was invented in 1932, by the then four major car companies, the Audi though in any of its models, has always been related to prestige and recognition. The Audi is no ‘cheap’ car, for the people who buy Audis are always independent people who are generally more than average income people. The Audi from its very first appearance in 1932 has been the centre of attraction for those who want to ‘show-off’

Here in this report the two cars discussed earlier are going to be discussed in detail.

Target Market:

When speaking of a mini, the picture that comes into the minds of many would be a cherry red, small car with a roof of black and white stripes, with a smiling British girl sitting in the driver’s seat. This is the target market of Mini, as the target audience by description is the people who the product is targeted to, the Mini is a car that usually appeals to the younger lot, and as younger people don’t have many means to make money, the ranges for the money are also kept in mind, most Minis are inexpensive, while they do offer differentiation in the way of customization.

The Audi on the other hand is much of a prestige car, there isn’t any question of customization here, as the real beauty of this car is in its ‘originality’ if the car is supposed to be bought, it is obvious the person belongs to an upper class, upper society family, or that person has made enough income, because Audi’s are not supposed to be easily affordable for just about anyone. The people who drive Audi are independent people who generally are in big positions, have a good pay, or own a business or something of that sort which enables them to have strong finance availability.

The makers of Mini basically wanted to target the teen group (apart from this they have SUVs as well), this group of people is very much into customization as they have a lot of time to spend, they want to be different in a ‘funky’ way. This is why Mini (even after being brought by BMW) did not loose its originality, and is still small in size, comes in different colors, and is still quite a head-turner.

The makers of Audi had another way of looking at things, they wanted to focus on the income of the buyer and then they gave that income group the class and prestige that they deserve and ‘demand’. This way when the target audience actually buys Audi they get a satisfaction of buying the product, though Audi is also a head-turner, but this time it’s the class and the look of a Audi that turns heads, the first thing that comes to the kinds of most people who hear the name of the Audi car is a good looking man, wearing preferably a suit, and has an attitude to himself. This is exactly the sort of personality that the company wanted Audi to have.

Here it would be beneficial to mention that though both, Audi and Mini, are cars and are meant to travel, but they both have special features, and somewhat different from the rest of the cars available in the market.

Brand Comparison:

Audi and Mini have both become big brands, both have a multi sub brands list attached with each of the main brands, but lets first talk about the main  or lets say the parent brands in detail. As mentioned earlier Mini was invented as a challenge by Sir Alec Illignos , after that the brands growth had already started, it was the most popular car amongst the housewives, this was due to its compact size and affordability, as the whole family (talking of medium sized families) could easily fit in the car and still be comfortable. But at that time the customization of the Mini had not started, this was brought in fashion by the formula one star John Cooper, who did his Mini in the British Flag and on the bonnet did a pattern of black and white stripes, it was then that the younger lot became buying the mini, because of the fad that had emerged due to the ‘creation’ by john cooper. The fad never really gave itself up, the fad turned into a trend and before anything more drastic could happen, The Mini was taken up by BMW from British Motor Company. BMW had to let the world know it had the mini now, so they did a few changes, obviously the name Mini had already created a personal appeal of the product, the product therefore couldn’t be changed, what could be changed was the look of the car, the car’s look has changed a bit and it has grown a bit wider since its last shape. But still it is comparatively the smaller car. Talking about Audi, well since the time Audi came into the market, a lot has been said about its class and the prestige that it offers its buyers. The Audis are high class cars, which are built for maximum space, people who drive Audi’s are seen as independent people, the Audi is a spacious car, has the ability to tow, which also tells a lot about how strong its body and the engine are, because if you tow a car or any other heavy object the car’s own weight and that of the other car or whatever goes directly on the engine, this is why the Audi is more popular among the wealthier people as not only is it spacious, it is heavy duty as well. The engine also has to be explained here because the engine’s heavy duty only tells you more about the speed and technology of the car, Audi’s or more frequently they are referred to as SUV’s are the sports utility vehicles, this means that they are not like the normal cars that drive around the town, these are special cars that have special speeds. The one thing that sets Audi different from most cars and Mini as well is that it is very fuel-efficient, what does that mean? – well that means that the mileage (miles traveled) are more in this car than the others, there would be cars that are also much more efficient in fuel than the Audi but talking here about the Audi, it can be said without hesitation that the Audi is better than many when it comes to being fuel efficient. The Audi is also customized in certain ways, how? One may ask, but its very simple to answer that, the Audi as told about ten times, is a “prestige car”, so it cant be having flags or horses painted on its bonnet or roof, neither can it have bright red or orange shades, but what it can have is the Leather seats, the interior done in wood, maybe some other material if you would like, the color of the interior can be changed (basic tones of Metallic colors only) the outer colors are also customized but even here the shades are limited to a few metallic shades, the difference in the customization of both the cars is that with Mini the owner or the buyer doest have to be limited with colors or materials, with Audi, the Company gives a very limited number of shades of Metallic colors only so that the prestige of the company and the satisfaction it is supposed to offer does not get hurt in the eyes of the general buyer. (Here general does not mean the average person for Audi) For Audi the class of people is different and therefore a simple glitch at the hands of even one customer can wound the entire company’s image in the eyes of all the prospective and existing clients.

The price ranges for Mini start from as low as $10,000 (mini one) and may in some cases go up to $23,000 (Mini cooper and clubman included), this price range is done for the affordability, and also these prices are modifies prices for the newer models by BMW, the prices were comparatively low when the company was not owned by BMW. Whereas the Audi’s price ranges starts from $75.000, and go way above than $ 95,000. The huge difference in price does show the difference in the target markets the companies target their products at, but what looks as a cheap car is not so cheap after all, as $ 10,000 is not a meager amount to be paid for a car. The publicity of Mini is done through the open market, which is actually that the product in the market and on the streets markets itself, as for the Audi; special TV commercials are designed to get the Prestige idea across to the target audience. The placement for Mini is done with the help of car dealers, and these car dealers make or customize these cars out on their own and sell them, this actually involves a third party contract for the Mini, the original Mini can also be brought directly from the company, and specifications about the customization designs is given to the company by the buyer. As far as the Audi is concerned, the placement of the Audi is done in special showrooms that are built to accommodate Audi itself, moreover a virtual tour on the internet website can also be taken, special rates and special orders are taken for the Audi, as it is made clear that the Audi is not an ordinary car, the customization does have an added price tag to it depending on what type of customization u want to do.

Conclusion:

Both cars have different target audiences and are relatively very different than each other but still both are “specialty products”  both have a different taste for everything, and people from different tastes choose them differently. In the end its just the buyers need that actually makes him or her buy the car, the one who buys Mini will be a chic person who likes to be fashionable and still not be too spendthrift, or doest have a lot to spend, on the other hand is the Audi guy who has a lot to spend, he earns it so he wants to spend it, this person wants to show the world he has achieved something in life, and what more better way to show-off than to own a Audi.

References:

Arnold , John . E-Mail Marketing For Dummies . For Dummies,  2007.

Kotler , Philip , & Armstrong, Gary . Principles of Marketing,.Prentice Hall; 12 edition, 2007.

Murray , Chris , & Soundview Executive Summaries . The Marketing Gurus: Lessons from the Best Marketing Books of All Time.Portfolio Hardcover, 2006.

http://www.audi.com/audi/com/en2.html

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mini

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Audi

http://www.mini.com/mini_worldwide/mini_worldwide.html

 

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