Brand Scan, a leading video insights company and division within the Volcano Group, was recently requested to assist Yamaha motorcycles in identifying strengths and weaknesses in their approach to retail sales and marketing.
Yamaha believed they could improve their performance in a competitive market, influenced by grey imports, especially in view of the excellent quality of the Yamaha machines.
The Brand Scan project involved conducting face-to-face video interviews with riders of Yamaha motorcycles, as well as those who owned opposition bikes. These interviews were conducted in Gauteng and the Western Cape, either in motorcycle dealerships or at off-road venues.
The results of the Yamaha interviews established the incredible loyalty these riders have for Yamaha and from this, the core values of the brand were confirmed. Apart from having an excellent, stylish image, the results also indicated Yamaha as being a clear leader in terms of spares and back up service. Most riders were found to be so loyal to Yamaha, they categorically stated that the next motorcycle bought by them, would definitely be another Yamaha.
The key insight with regard to opposition motorcycle riders was that many of them were riding their brand by default and not really by choice, with an affordable price often the reason for the purchase in the first place. Even though the other brand's riders are loyal to a degree, they all showed a strong admiration for the Yamaha brand.
Different switching triggers were noted in Gauteng and the Western Cape that needed to be applied to persuade these opposition riders to buy Yamaha. They were all aware of the quality, reliability and style of Yamaha and projected the brand's image in an extremely positive light.
New MD of Yamaha Distributors, Ian Pears, was most encouraged by the research outputs and stated that with sustained emphasis on these 'switching triggers' in their marketing communication, market share gains for Yamaha would be anticipated in the future.