Tag Archives: automobiles

Driverless Cars Deliver Pizza

Are you hungry? Want fast delivery of pizza, but don’t want to talk to anyone? There’s a solution for that.

Domino’s and Ford have formed a partnership to use self-driving Ford Fusions equipped with sensors, electronics and software, to deliver pizza to Domino’s customers in Ann Arbor, Mich. In the next few weeks, the companies will be able to see first-hand how customers respond to the new driverless delivery technology. What happens in the final 50 feet? Do people want to go outside to take delivery? Is it taking delivery simple to understand?

The cars will have safety engineers and researchers inside to monitor activities and customers’ reactions. Customers can track the delivery car through GPS, and when the car arrives, a text message will be sent to customers about how to retrieve their pizza.

Testing automated deliveries to homes and businesses goes far beyond just pizza. Deliveries from online shopping already total in the billions of dollars, and there is even more application in the future. Need roofing materials or building supplies? What about cooked meals, or ingredients for dinner?

One big advantage of the autonomous deliveries – no tipping required!

Group Activities and Discussion Questions:

  1. Poll students: What do they have delivered to their homes now? What would they like to see delivered in the future?
  2. Show video: https://youtu.be/hANXIPxN1ME
  3. Ask for reactions. What would be their behavior for this type of delivery?
  4. What are the advantages, and disadvantages of driverless delivery?
  5. Form students into teams. Have each team develop a list of possible research questions that Ford and Domino’s would use to evaluate and revise the service.

Source:  New York Times, Associated Press, other news sources

 

Leave a comment

Filed under Classroom Activities

Who Needs Advertising? Not Tesla.

Tesla continues to defy common advertising and marketing conventions, yet still managed to become a valuable brand and hot product. The company does not advertise or promote its cars through traditional media. This lets the company save a great deal of money, and focus on its design and manufacturing.

Tesla’s Model 3 goes on sale for an estimated delivery in the fourth quarter of this year. To date, without any advertising other than word-of-mouth and free media coverage, customers have put down $1,000 deposits on nearly 500,000 cars! According to the company, it continues to average 1,800 net orders per day.

This is an enviable position for the automaker considering that Nissan spent $4.3 million in advertising on its electric Nissan Leaf car, and General Motors spent $3.7 million on the Chevy Bolt electric car. Tesla may not sell as many vehicles, but its cost per vehicle is virtually non-existant.

The top five and bottom five spenders based on 2016 advertising are:

  • Hyundai Genesis – $6,821/vehicle sold
  • Lincoln – $2,719/vehicle sold
  • Jaguar – $2,376/vehicle sold
  • Fiat – $2,350/vehicle sold
  • Cadillac – $1,493/vehicle sold
  • Toyota – $353/vehicle sold
  • Dodge – $348/vehicle sold
  • Honda – $322/vehicle sold
  • Porsche – $283/vehicle sold
  • Tesla – $0/vehicle sold

It shows that while advertising is an important marketing tool, it is far from the only way to gain customers.

Group Activities and Discussion Questions:

  1. Discuss the various promotional tactics that can be used for launching a product.
  2. Have students come up with tactics and list all the tactics on the white board (ex: billboards, print, direct mail, etc.).
  3. Divide students into groups to work on this exercise.
  4. Show Tesla’s Web site: https://www.tesla.com/
  5. Videos are available on Tesla’s YouTube channel: https://www.youtube.com/user/TeslaMotors
  6. For Tesla, have each team select three different tactics. For each tactic, explain why it was selected and how it will be used.
  7. Debrief by putting together the entire suggested lists on the white board. As a final step, have the entire class vote on the top three tactics to use.

Source:  Ad Age Daily, Kantor Media, Automotive News

Leave a comment

Filed under Classroom Activities

Hum Rider

Hum Rider is a custom-build car that can master any traffic jam with a flick of a switch. The car widens and elevates so that you can drive right over the cars in front of you!  Really, it works.

But, unfortunately, the Hum Rider is not a real car that can be purchased. (Too bad, because if it existed, it would sell)! The Hum Rider is however an ingenious advertisement (and a specially-built vehicle) to promote a new service, Hum by Verizon.

Hum is a device that makes cars smarter and more connected with a suite of features. The device notifications include mechanic hotline, maintenance reminders, boundary and speed alerts, and for an additional fee, includes Wi-Fi hot spot.

Hum is priced at a subscription fee of $10 per month, plus $20 activation fee, plus $29.99 equipment fee. To use: download the app, clip Hum speaker to car visor, plug the Hum reader into a car’s OBD-II port, and it’s ready to go.

The video was a viral hit garnering 35 million views on Facebook in 48 hours. But sadly, it just can’t jump over the cars in front of you on the highway.

Group Activities and Discussion Questions:

  1. Pricing is usually a complex topic. Discuss the six steps for pricing (determining objectives, estimating demand, determining cost/profit relationships, select price level, set list price, and make adjustments).
  2. Discuss the various pricing models in class: demand-oriented, cost-oriented, profit-oriented, and competition-oriented.
  3. Show the Hum Rider video: https://youtu.be/faU7-6u58zM
  4. View the Web site Hum by Verizon: https://www.hum.com/
  5. For Hum, divide students into groups and have each group work on any/all of the six steps.
  6. When setting the price level, assign each team a different model to use (demand-oriented, cost- oriented, etc.).

Source:  Ad Week  

Leave a comment

Filed under Classroom Activities