If Only US Automakers Understood Their Brands As Well As Harley-Davidson Does

Discussion in 'OT Driven' started by TriShield, May 7, 2008.

  1. TriShield

    TriShield Super Moderator® Super Moderator

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    It's rare when a company not only understands its brand, but knows when it is in desperate need of shoring it up and reaffirming its reason for being.

    Harley-Davidson, which is facing the big cool down in sales after years of explosive growth, is just such a company. In a print ad that ran last Thursday (May 1) in USA Today, Harley let it all hang out with the following copy, which gets at the very essence of what makes the brand unique and special:

    "We don't do fear. Over the last 105 years in the saddle, we've seen wars, conflicts, depression, recession, resistance, and revolutions. We've watched a thousand hand-wringing pundits disappear in our rear-view mirror. But every time, this country has come out stronger than before. Because chrome and asphalt put distance between you and whatever the world can throw at you. Freedom and wind outlast hard times. And the rumble of an engine drowns out all the spin on the evening news. If 105 years have proved one thing, it's that fear sucks and it doesn't last long. So screw it, let's ride."

    If you want to read more, go to www.harleydavidson.com/screwit.

    Congratulations to all involved at Carmichael Lynch in Minneapolis, and here's to Mark-Hans Richer, for making it happen. - PMD

    http://www.autoextremist.com/on-the-table1/
     
    Last edited: May 8, 2008
  2. deusexaethera

    deusexaethera OT Supporter

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    It's marketing BS, but it's damned good marketing BS. One thing's for sure, though, they definitely do know that Harleys are what people think of riding when they want to get away from their troubles.
     
  3. you know me

    you know me OT where the douchbags play

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    :bowdown: now that is marketing
     
  4. Yop

    Yop New Member

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    thats pretty damn awesome
     
  5. red97gst

    red97gst New Member

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    Yup. For GM & Chrysler ( Ford/Merc), brand image came down to which style of body cladding or grille to use .
     
  6. Fareo

    Fareo New Member

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    harleys a badass company and they know it, corprate bullshit my ass we make motherfucking motorcycles bitch!

    :hsugh:
     
  7. uofapeter

    uofapeter New Member

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    They have such a strong brand its unreal.. fucking genius
     
  8. TriShield

    TriShield Super Moderator® Super Moderator

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    I want a black VRSC and a black Camaro in my garage. Both rides have the same spirit to me.
     
  9. dr.zed

    dr.zed DR.ZED OT Supporter

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    I have owned both. (not a Harley but a cruiser).

    Cruising to North Carolina from Toronto with my t-tops out for 11 hours exhaust rumbling alone with my thoughts is a soul-centering experience.

    The cruiser bike is the same. The sportbike I had for exactly 10 weeks. It just didn't give me that same experience.
     
  10. TriShield

    TriShield Super Moderator® Super Moderator

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    I think what you said, Richard Hammond's muscle car article on Top Gear, and this HD piece perfectly sums up the appeal of HD motorcycles and American muscle cars for us.
     
  11. deusexaethera

    deusexaethera OT Supporter

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    Family resemblance is important, but family values are more important. The "consumers" are humans, after all.
     
  12. August Burns

    August Burns New Member

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    Harley does it well, but the auto industry is on a much larger scale and involves many more variables.
     
  13. operationrob

    operationrob OT Supporter

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    harley sells LOTS and LOTS of clothing and accessories too.
     
  14. Drewski

    Drewski New Member

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    one big difference is that Harley's and bikes in general tend to be more of a lifestyle for the average rider. Cars on the other hand, for most, are simply transportation, so the kind of brand/lifestyle marketing that works so well for HD at attracting attention form the average bike buyer might not/probably wouldn't work so well on the average car buyer.

    Would something like that work on some car buyers? Sure, but I bet most of those people would already be buying American, and probably would be buying that brand already
     
  15. PanzerAce

    PanzerAce Active Member

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    link to muscle car article?
     
  16. SAKU39

    SAKU39 OT Supporter

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  17. TriShield

    TriShield Super Moderator® Super Moderator

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    Branding is powerful selling any product or service, from Coke to McDonalds to X-BOX to iPod to BMW.

    If American automakers truly understood and carefully managed and nurtured their brands that would be a big part in winning the battle to regain relevance.
     
  18. you know me

    you know me OT where the douchbags play

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    :bowdown:
     
  19. 396Hawk

    396Hawk Active Member

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    The automakers need more people like Scott Settlemire on the payroll.
     

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