Q1: What micro environmental factors affected the introduction and re-launch of the Toyota Prius? How well has Toyota dealt with these factors? Firstly, the company has spent a lot of money on the re-launch of the new and improved Prius model which is over 40 million dollars. On the same note it was also able to generate a profit represented by a 120% rise in the sales after some time of the re-launch.
Starting off with the main objectives of the company to provide a new and technology product to the target market it was able to cover its operating and marketing costs and also make build a profitable customer relationship. Secondly, the agents helped promote the new brand hybrid. Since the company did not want to take any chance for interpretation of the features of Prius, they did not offer online purchase facility to customers. Thus, Toyota hired agents and provided professional training to them to provide maximum customer satisfaction.
Thirdly, the company’s main target was those customer who were ‘techies’ and were ready to buy the product at its launch. The company made sure that their focused customers were well informed before the products launch i. e. 2 years before. Then, the company’s marketing strategies also included taglines with emotions which were very effective in its promotion. In summer 2004, the gasoline prices rose so the demand for Prius increases and so did the waiting lists. Toyota tried its best to cover the entire demand but still left some customers unsatisfied.
Later on, it overcame this problem by a 33% and then a 100% rise in the monthly production. But the extensive and large scale advertising campaign and strong, overall marketing strategies helped Toyota to gain the competitive edge over them as well as the rest of the smaller rivals. Then, the incentive provided by the government of tax deduction also helped but the increase in the speed limit was a hindrance for Toyota which was also covered by the heavy marketing strategies.
Q2: outline the major macro-environment factors demographic, economic, natural, technological, political and cultural that affected the introduction and re-launch of the Toyota Prius. How well has Toyota dealt with each of these factors? The main customer focus of the company was those people who were youngster i. e. belonging to generation Y. so the main focus of the entire promotional activities were the ‘techies’ due to which a major portion of their profits was contributed by them.
With respect to the economic factors, the case shows that the customer had enough income to spend on this luxury. This is shown by the fact that the company was able to sell 1800 cars in immediately and also had to raise the monthly production level by 33% and then even by 100% to meet the demand. Toyota is an “environmentally concerned” company since it had greater fuel efficiency and lower emissions. It also took advantage from the environmental appeal by spending out green seed cars shaped like Toyota’s logo to prospective buyers on Earth Days.
The technological factor is explained by the many factors including adding cruise control by some wiring, dashboard display screen, playing video games, installing sniffer, 7-inch energy monitor, a CD player holding 6 discuses at a time and many more. Since the customers favored technological products and had enough knowledge Toyota was able to maintain customer loyalty. Politically, the company received support from the government in the form of tax deductions which helped efficient production but on the same note the speed limit factor acted as a hindrance but was covered by extensive marketing campaigns.