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Purpose. The study is aimed at determining the factors, which Chinese customers are guided by when choosing electric cars, as well as defining an efficient branding strategy for the BMWi product.
Design. The research was carried out as a quantitative study, as the nature of the relations between the key variables required quantification of the research results.
Methodology. The research was conducted as a quantitative analysis of the data acquired in the course of questionnaire answers analysis.
Findings. According to the key outcomes of the study, the main reason for the green policy of BMW in general and the introduction of the BMWi vehicle in particular have been inefficient so far due to the lack of connection built by BMW between the customers and the brand.
Research Limitation. The study was limited in terms of the number of participants, which could be engaged in the survey. Since it was practically impossible to embrace every single social tier, the outcomes of the research turned out to be rather approximate. Herein the key limitation of the study lies.
Practical Implications. The practical significance of the study is defined by the effects, which the information in question will have on the BMW Company. By understanding the motives of the customers, the firm will be able to create a new branding approach for promoting its product successfully.
Keywords. Electric vehicle, environmentalism, BMWi.
The increased competition rates that can be witnessed in the environment of the global economy in the current age of informational technology define the branding approaches used by companies to a considerable degree. Learning about the brand strategies, which companies resort to in order to cater to the needs of the target denizens of the population allows understanding how customer behaviour can be analyzed and used for promoting the product successfully.
The introduction of BMWi has clearly altered the existing vehicle market. Targeting at a specific tier of the Chinese society, the company had to use a very elaborate branding strategy, which could affect the behaviour of the Chinese customers and alter it, convincing them that electric vehicles (EV) were a better bargain than diesel cars (Steinhilber, Wells, & Thankappan 2014) because of the environmental impact.
Studying the tools, which BMW used to attract Chinese customers and sell them EV, will help understand the ways, in which branding strategies affect people (He et al. 2013). By enhancing the concept of a green brand, BMW managed to sell BMWi to Chinese customers successfully (Vallaster, Lindgreen, & Maon 2012).
Although the very concept of BMWi sounds perfect for introducing China to proper resources use, the promotion of the specified product in the target area seems to have been occurring at a rather slow pace (Ganescu 2012). Moreover, people clearly seem to be reluctant about purchasing the EV supplied by BMW (Huehn 2011).
The promotion of green economy is, however, still essential for China and the wellbeing of its citizens. Therefore, it is imperative to identify the key reasons for EV to fail in the designated market. It would be wrong to claim that the identification of the key reasons for the Chinese people to refuse from buying EV will ultimately resolve the problem – quite on the contrary, a detailed solution will have to be developed along with the location of the key causes of failure.
In other words, the study will focus on both the factors that have contributed to the drop in the EV popularity in China and the actions that can be taken in order to address the situation in question (Hawkins et al. 2012). Thus, the key rationale for the study concerns the lack of understanding of the importance of the EV use as the tool for reducing the effects of car exhaust on the environment.
Seeing that the Chinese market is characterized by a variety of features related to the Chinese culture, the need to deploy a unique approach towards marketing can also be viewed as a crucial rationale for the study.
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The study is aimed at locating the factors that define the popularity of the EV products in China, as well as identifying the branding strategy that will help promote the product successfully. Particularly, the sudden drop in the interest of the local population to the product in question will have to be studied.
As it has been stressed above, though, the research will not be restricted solely to the identification of the factors that shape the buyers’ attitude towards the product in question. Apart from the location of the key reasons for the product under analysis to become unpopular with the target audience, the research will also aim at identifying the ways of promoting the product to the target population in a more efficient manner.
In other words, the goal of the research can be considered twofold, as the study will pursue the goals of both defining the existing dents in BMW’s strategy for promoting its product to the target audience and the definition of the measures that may enhance the process of EV promoting in the target area.
Specifically, the culture issue will be studied thoroughly so that every single fact that might possibly have affected the process of BMWi promotion in the above-mentioned state could be not only located easily but also prevented efficiently from reducing the popularity of the product among Chinese consumers.
In order to carry out the analysis of the factors, which influence customer behaviour in general and the buyers’ behaviour in China particularly, one will have to identify the changes in people’s attitude towards the very concept of environmentalism and the use of green transportation tools as the means of achieving environmental awareness, as well as the idea of using AVs as a part and parcel of their regular lives.
The specified objective can be reached by gathering the responses of the research participants to the questionnaire designed for learning about the changes in people’s attitudes towards the very concept of AV. Additionally, it will be required to carry out a series of quantitative analyses of the information retrieved in the course of the study. Particularly, the variance in the answers of the participants will have to be calculated to that the significance of change could be evaluated.
The study will require a detailed description of the methods, which will be utilized in the course of research. Afterwards, a thorough literature review will be carried out so that the latest points of view on the subject matter could be incorporated into the study.
Finally, an analysis of the data retrieved in the course of administering questionnaires to the participants will occur. The analysis of the information retrieved from questionnaires will be followed by a conclusion including the summary of research results and recommendations for the further exploration of the issue.
Ganescu, M 2012, ‘Corporate social responsibility, a strategy to create and consolidate sustainable businesses.’ Theoretical and Applied Economics, vol. 19, no. 11, pp. 91–106.
Hawkins, T R, Singh, B, Majeau-Bettez, G & Strømman, A H 2012, ‘Comparative environmental life cycle assessment of conventional and electric vehicles,’ Journal of Industrial Ecology, vol. 17, no. 1, pp. 53–64.
He, F, Yafeng, Y, Wang, J & Yang, Y 2013, ‘Sustainability SI: optimal prices of electricity at public charging stations for plug-in electric vehicles,’ Networks and Spatial Economics, vol. 60, no. 1, pp. 531–569.
Huehn, N 2011, Ethics, economic theory and corporate governance. Web.
Steinhilber, S, Wells, P & Thankappan, S 2014, ‘Socio-technical inertia: understanding the barriers to electric vehicles,’ Energy Policy, vol. 1, no. 1, pp. 1–10.
Vallaster, C, Lindgreen, L & Maon, F 2012, ‘Strategically leveraging corporate social responsibility: A corporate branding perspective,’ California Management Review, vol. 54, no. 3, pp. 34-60.