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Corolla Toyota car is one of the many products of the Toyota Group, a Japanese car maker. Corolla Toyota is a brand name that was introduced in 1966 and it became a best seller in 1997. Under the Toyota Corolla, there are numerous brands that have been designed to meet the demands, expectations and tastes of the people. The research paper analyses the marketing mix of Toyota Corolla using the 4ps to determine its competitive advantage. The 4ps are product, price, place, and promotion.
Toyota Corolla is the most successful product of all the Toyota group products. This is because of its adaptability, reliability, dependability, and affordable price. Toyota corolla is small, fuel efficient, inexpensive, and dependable car compared to other brands of Toyota group (Edmund para.1).
It can be used by any person regardless of the gender. Since its introduction in US, it has been designed in various body styles like the wagon, hatchback, coupe, and sedan. The sedan is the latest design of the Toyota Corolla car which is some expensive than the past model although it has been successful. Sedans from other competitors have also been giving the brand a huge competition.
The competitors of the Toyota Corolla are Mazda, Hyundai, Honda, and Chevrolet, Honda, Hyundai and Mazda (Edmunds para.5). It has been outdone by its competitors in its value, driving pleasure, and interior quality. Toyota Corolla has increased its sales through branding and public imaging. For example, Corolla is a household name in US for the brand is affordable, reliable, and dependable.
Product life cycle of Toyota Corolla
The development of Toyota corolla was initiated through market research and development. The product was developed with features that met the requirements of a middle class citizen.
Some of the aspects that were considered during the development of the product include affordability, cost, dependability, and rate of fuel consumptions. During its introduction in the markets, Toyota corolla was well marketed to create brand awareness. The product was well accepted in the market upon its introduction. High sales were reported in U.S especially from the middle class families.
This was followed by the growth stage that saw Toyota corolla establish a strong market. For example, a strong brand was established in the US and other parts upon its introduction in the market (Edmunds n.d). Through advertisements and promotions, the Corolla was able to gain a large market share competing with other motor vehicle products like the Mazda and Chevrolet. However, the product had little competition at this phase as it was at the epitome of its success.
During the maturity phase, Corolla become stable but somehow started to decline as competitors started to catch up in the competitive market. However, the product had to be differentiated through the introduction of new features.
For example, the 2011 Toyota Corolla has more features than the 2010 Corolla. According to the U.S News (2011), the Corolla is struggling to compete with other vehicles. This can support that the vehicle has reached its maturity stage. The company has expanded the distribution channels of the Corolla to Middle East and other nations in south and Latin America.
The Toyota Corolla has reached its decline phase since the market has become saturated. For example, most of the 2009 and 2010 Corollas have been recalled because of the faulty technical problems (US News 2011). This has threatened the reputation of the brand as well as the brand image. It is all evident that Corolla is now unable to compete with other reliable cars like Honda Civic and the Ford Fiesta (US News 2011).
Toyota corolla cars are known for their affordable prices. The current price of the cars ranges from $16,300 – $18,600 at retail price (Edmunds n.d). Because of its affordable prices, Corolla has become the most economical and affordable car for different customers. Pricing is also based on segmentation where different geographical regions have different prices based on aspects like tax, transport and warehousing costs.
Toyota corolla uses both the penetration pricing and the economy pricing strategies to reach the demands of its customers. For instances, during the introduction of the Corolla Toyota in U.S, it used the penetration strategy. This pricing strategy is based on low price and high quality of the vehicles.
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The objective of this pricing strategy was to reach middle class and working customers. The strategy also ensured that the targeted customers would enjoy the high quality dependability, reliability, and affordable costs. The strategy was used to gain the US markets thus making them the number one selling cars.
On the other hand, the current Toyota Corolla prices are based on the economy pricing. Economy pricing strategy is based on low price and low quality strategy. The strategy objective has been developed to reach a wide number of customers. It has also been used to offer a competitive price that is affordable to a wide spectrum of its customers.
Toyota Corolla cars are distributed through a wide range of networks that reach the targeted population in the required time frame. The primary markets of the Toyota Corolla are Japan, North America Asia, Europe, and Africa. Toyota Corolla itself is a distribution channel that is used by Toyota Group to distribute the product to its consumers. In Japan, Toyota corolla has 67 independent dealership channels, 7 which are owned by Toyota and 74 outlets which are used to sell the products (Toyota, p.25).
The sale subsidiaries are used to support the sale of vehicles outside Japan in markets like Asia, Europe, and North America. The sales channels that have been used to distribute and sale the Corollas have been credited for the success of the products. The Corolla channel is used to focus on the customers at retail levels. The compact models are distributed through these channels reaching the wide range of customers (Toyota p.25).
Toyota Corolla is promoted and advertised using different methods. Some of the commonly used aspects of promotion of Toyota Corolla include advertising, sales promotions, personal selling and public relations. For example, the Toyota corolla 2011 was promoted through the television where a Japanese renowned artiste was featured (Nutley 2011).
The advert was also availed to different Toyota Corolla fans through Androids and iTunes. The adverts are also featured on the Toyota website where the prices and features. By the use of female celebrity in advertising the Toyota Corolla, sex appeal is applied to reach the consumers. It portrays a car that is comfortable, easy to use, and dependable. Female models are also used during the launch of the cars in the market giving a feminine aspect of care as portrayed by women.
The 2011 Toyota corolla
Source: Walker (2011)
Toyota corolla uses personal selling to reach its customers. For example, the sale s distribution network for Toyota products is largest in Japan where sales personnel are used to sale the products (Toyota p.24). The sales persons visit the customers in the offices and homes and persuade them to buy the products.
However, this form of advertising is being replaced by the use of showrooms sales (Toyota p.24). The use showrooms have the capacity of giving the customer first hand information and it gives the customers the chance to see the Corolla cars. The company Toyota Group has also established partnership dealerships were the Toyota corolla are availed in different markets in the world (Toyota p.25).
Toyota Corolla cars are advertised in magazines like the Motor sports that features other cars. The magazine is able to reach a large number of customers. Other magazines include the Automobile and top gear. Other forms of advertising Toyota Corolla include the use of leaflets, posters and brochures that are used to showcase the cars. The descriptions such as dependability, reliability, and affordability are also included.
Based on analysis, Toyota Corolla has been a successful product in the market since its introduction. This has been necessitated by some of the aspects like affordability, dependability, efficient fuel consumption, and reliability. However, Toyota Corolla has reached its decline phase as it has become less competitive compared to other products like Honda Civic and Mazda. This has been because of producing better cars by the competitors.
Edmunds. “Toyota Corolla Review.” Web.
Nutley, Michael. “Virtual Pop Star Performs in AR to Promote Toyota Corolla.”. N.p., September 2011. Web.
Toyota., “Life Cycle Analysis.” Toyota, 2011. Web.
Toyota., “Toyota motor corporation.” 2011. Web.
U.S News. “2011 Toyota Corolla.” U.S News, : 8/26/11. Web.
Walker, Allen. “the 2011 Toyota Corolla mark’s US debut(updated).” 2011. Web.