Ford Motor Company in India: Marketing the Ford Figo

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Case Details:

Case Code : MKTG296
Case Length :14 Pages
Period : 1980 -2011
Pub Date : 2012
Teaching Note : Not Available
Organization :Publix Super Market, Inc.
Industry : Retail
Countries : USA

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This case study was compiled from published sources, and is intended to be used as a basis for class discussion. It is not intended to illustrate either effective or ineffective handling of a management situation. Nor is it a primary information source.

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"We believe Ford Figo is a big game-changer for Ford that will help transform our brand into a volume player in India"

– Michael Boneham, Ford India’s president and managing director.

In February 2010, Ford India Pvt. Ltd., the wholly-owned subsidiary of Ford Motor Company, launched its first small car, the Ford Figo1 , in India. Within 15 months of its launch, Figo sales had crossed 100,000 unit sales. The Ford Figo’s rapid market growth saw it joining the club of the top five selling cars in India along with the Maruti Alto, the Hyundai i10, the Maruti Swift, and the Maruti Wagon R. The Ford Figo received many accolades including the best passenger car award (2010). Having successfully launched the company’s first bestselling car model in India, the challenge before the marketing team was how to maintain the momentum in the long run.

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Ford President and CEO, Alan Mulally (Mulally), stated that the new Ford Figo was designed and engineered to compete in the heart of the domestic car market in India. At the September 2009 show at which the Figo was revealed, Mulally said, “Our exciting new Ford Figo shows how serious we are about India. It reflects our commitment to compete with great products in all segments of this car market. We are confident the Ford Figo will be a product that Indian consumers really want and value.” The company had conducted a lot of marketing research to understand consumer behavior while developing the Figo. Based on research, Ford found its potential target customer and named him Sandeep. Sandeep was a young, tech-savvy, value seeking buyer. Ford designed and developed the Figo to suit the target customer’s needs. The Ford Figo featured a solid stance, an invitingly large interior, and a vibrant, youthful character. From the day of its reveal, Ford started giving final shape to its marketing strategies for the Figo to get ready for the big launch. Keeping the target customer in mind, Ford followed a multi-pronged launch strategy covering many aspects like online social networking, the print media, TV commercials, blogging, and specific website and online advertising. With the initial success behind it, the marketing team faced a challenge in evolving a marketing strategy to build on the company’s first major success in India.

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1] It is a four-door hatchback, which is a type of automobile design, consisting of a passenger cabin which includes an integrated cargo space, accessed from behind by a hatch or flip-up window. Hatchbacks are also often called three-doors (two entry doors and the hatch) or five-doors (four entry doors and the hatch) cars. The name Figo was derived from colloquial Italian for ‘cool’.

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