Honda Motors Marketing Strategy: An Analysis
Honda is a leading manufacturer of automobiles and motorcycles. It is a global brand that has brought several attractive car and bike models to the market. In the recent years, its sales have grown fast. North America is its leading market accounting for a very large part of Honda’s revenues in the automobile segment. Another important market is Japan; the domestic market of Honda. There are several major competitors of Honda in the global market including Volkswagen, Toyota and Ford. These brands have a large product portfolio and invest aggressively in research and innovation. With economic growth in the Asian region, demand for vehicles has also grown. Honda’s motorcycle sales are high in the Asian region. Yamaha is a major competitor of Honda in the motorcycle segment. In the 21st century, every brand is eager for faster growth. Each one is spending more on marketing as well as research and development to acquire a larger market share and attract new customers. Auto firms spend millions on advertising and promotions every year.
Print and television advertising
Honda has brought several attractive product models to the market. It has also used a smart marketing strategy with focus upon creating a reliable image and trust among the customers. It uses both traditional and digital methods of promotion to promote its brand and products. The ‘Power of Dreams’ slogan features across Honda’s advertising and promotion campaigns and events. The brand has set a vision 2030 for itself which is going to guide its business strategy in the near term. Advertising has always been a key component of Honda’s marketing and promotional strategy. The brand has always spent heavily on promoting its car and bike models in local markets. Whether it is the Honda City, Civic or Honda CBR bikes, they are always promoted heavily in newspapers and magazine advertisements. Auto magazines, auto blogs and other websites dedicated to automobile industry also feature articles on Honda and its products regularly. Being a leading vehicle brand, Honda finds mention in news and media regularly. Television advertisements are also a major method of promotion for the Honda products. The ads of its beautiful family cars are promoted through creative television ads. For example, the Honda Fit Sport advertisement highlighting interior space of the model. The ad shows everything you need to keep with you on a picnic can be easily packed into the Honda Fit Sport, promoting it as a family car suitable for leisure moments.
Sponsorships and partnerships with key personalities
Apart from television and print ads, digital advertisements have also become an important part of Honda’s advertising and promotion strategy. Digital advertising has become important for every automotive brand because avery large number of customers are found online most of the time. Not just in terms of marketing, but production, supply chain as well as distribution too, these automotive brands are investing heavily in digital technology. However, Honda’s marketing strategy is not limited to just promotions and advertising but the brand also promotes itself through sponsorship of key sports events and social initiatives. It sponsors a wide range of initiatives in Ireland and across the world to support communities and charities as well as sporting events and personalities. Apart from its sponsorship of ‘Wings for Life world Run in Ireland’, the brand has also partnered with several sports and film personalities for promoting of its brand and products. It partnered international model and presenter Alison Caravan who is known for her work in fashion, film and television. Caravan is also known for her work in the area of parenting and children. Honda also partnered with Munster Rugby star J J Hanrahan and GAA star Larkin. The company also sponsored women’s procycling team. It has also run several photo contests for the fans of Honda to show there appreciation of the brand. Apart from attracting customers, such initiatives work well to retain the existing customers.
Investment in CSR:
The brand also invests in CSR and charity initiatives so as to grow trust and build a reliable image. In 2017, Honda celebrated the 2017 week of service during which its dealers and suppliers served more than 162,000 meals, collected 1000 bags of trash and also donated 700 pints of blood. These actions and initiatives help build a socially responsible image and prove Honda an accountable brand. Across the entire North America, the company has partnered with non-profits working in fields like education and other kind of support as well as protection of the environment. The brand also engages its associates in socially productive work. Its associates volunteer for social initiatives. The brand also started a special campaign to raise awareness among its customers about the distractions on the road. It posted a series of videos that are meant to make people aware of the perils of distracted driving. Such videos do not just engage users but also market a socially responsible image of the brand. Honda also donates to several charity organisations.
Awards and Recognitions:
Awards and recognitions also help with growing the popularity of a brand. Honda has received several prestigious awards and recognitions from several agencies for its innovative products. Its Honda Accord sedan has won several awards and recognitions apart from the North American car of the year award for 2018. Motor week also recognised Honda Accord as the best family Sedan and Kelly Book recognised it for best resale value. Honda’s other models also received several similar awards from several agencies. Honda Civic was recognises as the best small car by Motorweek. 2018’s Best Buy Small car award was given to Honda Civic by The Kelly Blue Book. KBB has also recognised Honda as the best overall brand.
Honda is one of the leading and most successful automotive brands of this world whose several models are popular globally. However, the credit of its success goes to several things like successful marketing and technological innovation. The brand uses several channels for marketing of its brand apart from the traditional methods. Not just print and television advertising, the brand also advertises its products and models on digital channels and promotes its brand using sponsorships. 21st century has brought heavy competition to the automotive industry and brands must invest in marketing so as to remain competitive. However, not just great marketing, it is also important to build a great brand image to remain popular and for successful marketing in the modern world.