Chapter 8 of the course text, Principles of Marketing
As you are likely aware, your internship brand (SUBARU) doesn’t just do business in the United States. So in this interactive activity, we’re going to research their past global activity. But rather than writing about it, we’re going to talk about it—by creating a video presentation.
To complete this assignment, you need to do the following:

Create a six-slide PowerPoint presentation.

 
Instructions

Identify your internship company (SUBARU) and a specific country to analyze your brand’s international market.

The country can be from Asia, South America, Europe, the Middle East, or anywhere else on the globe.

Pitch two elements from each quadrant of actors and forces about your internship company.

Refer to Table 8.1 of Chapter 8. (ATTACHED)

Slide Requirements

Create six slides with Microsoft Powerpoint (Links to an external site.), Google Slides, or another tool of your choice.
Structure your slides as follows:

Slide 1 – Include your name, internship company, country or market.
Slides 2 to 5 – Include two elements of each quadrant from Table 8.1, with brief highlights of your discussion points, on each slide.
Slide 6 – Include a summary of your presentation.
Must be only 6 slides (See below’s tab – Formatting Requirements – for more details).
4
Marketing Plan: Product Identification and SWOT Analysis

Marketing Plan: Product Identification and SWOT Analysis

Kevin Sessions
BUS 330 Principles of Marketing
University of Arizona Global Campus
May 2, 2022

Introduction: Subaru

Established as an aircraft research laboratory company in Japan, Subaru Corporation was founded in 1917, and it is the parent company of Subaru. American Subaru was established in 1968, and the first major was in the production of engines for snowmobiles. Subaru first produced its vehicle, the 4WD passenger van, in 1972. That is when Subaru started fully operating in the automotive industry. Later, the company opened another branch in Canada and started expanding to become a household name in the motor vehicle industry. According to White, S. (2012). “Once marketers have selected a market niche to target, they manipulate thousands of variables to design the exact offering that will stand out as the best value compared to competing offerings.” Subaru has created a niche and built a reputation that has helped it maintain a loyal customer base. The goal of Subaru is to “provide enjoyment and peace of mind to all its customers through people-oriented vehicle manufacturing” (Subaru, 2021). This text aims to provide a situational analysis of Subaru. The paper highlights the core products and services of the company, its competitors, and its SWOT analysis, which provide a guideline for its marketing plan. Lastly, the paper offers recommendations for how Subaru can achieve competitive differentiation through branding, packaging, support, and quality.

Core Products and Services of Subaru

Subaru has been in the automotive industry for over a century now. Its main products and services have included manufacturing engines, ATVs, automobile components and parts, and the assembly and manufacturing of cars. The company is famous for its All-Wheel Drive (AWD) and boxer engine, which have increased its resources and capability to compete in the automotive industry. The cars of Subaru have the highest resale value, which is rare with other car brands. All its vehicle models have attracted a large customer base for the company, which has expanded its services worldwide. The company has focused on one customer niche that it understands well, and it has increased its positive reputation in the production of AWD vehicles.

Key Current Competitors

The main competitors of Subaru are Volkswagen, Ford Motors, and BMW. These companies have realized a high demand for vehicles worldwide, and they are implementing necessary strategies to beat Subaru. They are producing unique models and offering them at lower prices. BMW is a big giant that Subaru must be wary of after topping the 2021 list of luxury car producers. Ford Motors is getting a pay-off from its venture into electrified cars, trucks, and SUVs. Its models, such as the Mustang Mach-E, increased the sales of Ford, and it ranked number 3 in sales in 2021. “Ford stated that its F-150 Lightning has generated 200,000 reservations since its unveiling in May and explained that around three-quarters of these buyers are new to the brand” (O’Donoghue, 2022).
On the other hand, Volkswagen is making solid footprints in the automotive industry through its ID Range. According to Volkswagen.com (2022), the ID.4 range and the Atlas increased their sales by 12% in 2021. It now ranks among the top car manufacturers at 85.97%, increasing overall industry resilience and strong competitive advantage.
However, Beresdord (2021) asserts that the automotive industry is experiencing a shortage of microchips, and the production of these companies is affected since they have focused on mass production. Subaru will be ahead of them because it has always focused on manufacturing what it only needs.

SWOT Analysis

Strengths

· Highest resell values which increase revenue
· Traditional boxer engine gives Subaru the right of technology patent.
· Over 75% sale of cars internationally
· Innovative and technologically driven which increases its competitive advantage.
· Environmental protection policies such as using recyclable materials enhance its reputation.

Weaknesses

· Poor in R&D especially on customers
· Decreasing net profit from JPY 436.65 billion in 2016 to JPY 76.51 billion in 2021.
· High attrition rates and spends more in hiring and training
· Focusing on only one segment by always launching cars with sports designs and looks

Opportunities

· Creativity, innovation, and technology to meet the fast-changing customer preferences.
· Digitize by creating websites and marketing through social media platforms
· Invest more in the manufacture of electric vehicles since their demand is increasing.

Threats

· Competition from giants such as BMW, Volkswagen, Ford Motors, and Tesla.
· Rising fuel costs are reducing its customers
· Rising costs of raw materials are making production costly.
· Competitors’ use of technology and innovation to produce superior products.

The Product for a Marketing Plan

The market plan targets Subaru Ascent, the largest automobile manufactured by the company. The vehicle is mid-size with three rows and can accommodate eight passengers. There is a need to improve the Ascent because the COVID-19 pandemic made people realize the importance of family. Therefore, many people take their families out for camping and other recreational activities. Subaru vehicles have been suitable for meeting this demand through their sport design. The Ascent can accommodate up to 8 people, making it perfect for that. One of the strengths of Subaru is its AWD, and Ascent has it, which makes it fit for vacations and road trips. However, the weakness is that the Ascent may be small for large families with extended relatives as they may not fit in the car. The opportunity for Subaru is that many families are made up of mothers, fathers, and children. With the ongoing outbreak of COVID in different phases, the company has a chance to increase its revenue. Subaru has always been known for perfect cars on Terrain and road trips. It can take advantage of this to market its Ascent to families globally. However, it also has to be wary of its competitors, who are its most significant threat. Other companies have recognized the effects of the pandemic and understood what their customers need, and they can threaten Subaru’s new marketing strategy.

The Product and Its Concept

Subaru has a positive track record in the manufacture of sports cars. Therefore, making something that will meet customer needs after the pressure of the COVID-19 pandemic will increase its venue. They can extend their sports design to cover the family, which will indicate that the company can handle all types of customer segments. Families have that expensive feel but at the same time need something affordable. Subaru should step in and offer precisely that through its Ascent.

Achieve Competitive Differentiation

When it comes to branding the Ascent, Subaru has to be creative, rebrand, and committed to creating a brand image that has never been seen before. This will differentiate the brand and attract new clients and its existing customer within its target audience of families. Subaru should roll out a model that envisages sports, recreations, and vacations with packaging. The three rows should be structured to allow the family to interact freely for fun. This will attract more families to the product. In terms of support, the Ascent should be designed so that it is the only alternative for customers. The ability of Ascent to accommodate family, be effective in terrains, and provide the customer with comfortability will ensure the customers perceive the vehicle positively through the benefits they will derive from it. Lastly, Subaru has to ensure Ascent is of high-quality and unique to differentiate it from the cars of other manufacturers such as BMW. Every customer is after high-quality products that can meet their demands and needs. However, the Ascent is already a quality roll-out with AWD, and it is expected to increase its competitive advantage of Subaru.

Conclusion

Subaru is one of the giants in the automotive industry, and it is famous for its AWD and the traditional Engine, which have contributed to its global growth and expansion in the industry. It has maintained a trend of manufacturing cars with a sports design and model, which has made it competitive in a wide range of markets. With the growth in technology, Subaru has the opportunity to utilize innovation and digital technologies to market its products and increase its presence globally. However, with the COVID-19 pandemic that hit the world hard, consumers have focused their attention on their families. There is a need for Subaru to focus on the Ascent since it can accommodate families and provide excellent vacation and road trip services.

References

Beresdord (2021). A Microchip Might Be Why The New Car You Want is Hard To Locate. Car and Driver; Retrieved from:
https://www.caranddriver.com/news/a35228204/microchipshortage-car-production-disruption/

O’Donoghue, J. (2022). Tesla’s Competitors: The Other Players in the Electric Vehicle Industry. Retrieved from
https://mywallst.com/blog/teslas-competitors/

Subaru (2021). Corporate Profile. Retrieved from https://www.subaru.co.jp/en/outline/pdf/company_brochure.pdf?0108
Volkswagen.com (2022). Volkswagen Group achieves solid results in 2021 and drives forward its transformation to NEW AUTO. Retrieved from
https://www.volkswagenag.com/en/news/2022/03/volkswagen-group-achieves-solid-results-in-2021-and-drives-forwa.html

White, S. (2012). Principles of marketing (2nd ed.). https://content.uagc.edu/books/White.4975.18.1/sections/sec1.4?search=niche%20market#w8554




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