Digital Marketing Plan for Volkswagen

ME INFOI created this infographic to display the scandal in an easy to read format.                                                                                           

Situation Analysis

Volkswagen is still in hot water with consumers because of their emissions scandal. In the scandal, they created software that let the company cheat on the emissions tests, saying the cars were letting off less emissions than they actually were.

The company is worth $31 billion but this scandal has cost them $10 billion so far.

Strategy

Volkswagen needs to gain back the trust of their customers. They will always be seen as cheaters but they need to show customers how sorry they are for lying and do whatever they can to gain back their trust.

Volkswagen is going to gain the customers trust back by creating a campaign that goes back to the simplicity of the brand and put into customers’ minds how they have been a great brand for many years and this one set back shouldn’t hurt them in the long run.

Objectives

  • Gain back customers trust by 10% in order to be a leader in customer satisfaction and quality by 2017.
  • Gain back positive customer image by 5% by 2017.

Tactics

  1. Take responsibility for their actions to gain back trust and show VW is still a trustworthy brand.
  2. Turn to social media to speak to loyal customers and get positive messages out there.
  3. Promote hybrid and other cars to get focus off diesel cars.
  4. Focus campaigns on features like: safety, customer service and new products.

Action

  1. Volkswagen can gain back trust by taking responsibility for their actions. Incorporate ads that will show they are sorry for what they did, but despite this recent scandal they are still a trustworthy brand.
  2. Volkswagen has been around for many years and has established a large loyal customer base. VW should take to social media to engage with loyal customers and be personable. The loyal customers will vouch for the brand and VW needs to acknowledge these people. If people see that others are still loyal it could get them to still buy from VW.
  3. Volkswagen needs to get the focus off diesel cars and start promoting their other environmental friendly cars like the hybrids. It will give the consumers a chance to give these lesser-known options more attention.
  4. Produce new marketing campaigns that focus on new products, safety and customer service. Put these features in the forefront to showcase the positive factors of VW. Also, create a campaign that goes back to the simplicity of the brand and put into customers’ minds how they have been a great brand for many years and this one set back shouldn’t hurt them in the long run.

Control

Volkswagen can measure this by:

  • Surveying past and present customers on their satisfaction and trust with the company, asking if they will ever trust VW enough to purchase another car from them in the future. In the survey, ask if the new advertisements swayed their answer in any way.
  • Look at comments mentioning VW on social media. See if there are more positive or negative comments.

Budget

  • $6,000 for promoted Tweets at $4 per 1 promoted Tweet. This will be enough if Volkswagen has 5 promoted Tweets a day.
  • $7,300 for a Facebook promoted page along with ads.
  • $550,000 per one TV commercial (production and publication included).
  • $400,000 per one print ad (production and publication included).

Schedule

The problem with the emissions scandal is that it is an ongoing process and will take a while for consumers to fully trust Volkswagen again and be seen in a positive light. As long as the sales stay the same or go up slightly the company is in good standing because that means they aren’t losing any more customers to the scandal.

As far as the campaigns go, VW needs to turn to social media immediately and keep the positive conversations going and respond to the positive feedback from loyal customers.

Every 3 months start new campaigns integrating the new products and hybrid cars with messages about VW being a trusted brand that has been around for a long time.

VW stock today
From: http://www.thestreet.com/story/13494229/1/volkswagen-vlkay-stock-closes-down-faces-3-61-billion-lawsuit-in-germany.html

This graph shows the stock for Volkswagen before the emissions scandal, right after and the present. It shows that it plummeted immensely right after the scandal, but it is slowly climbing back up. This is a good sign because it shows people are slowly starting to put their trust back into Volkswagen.

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Author: Ashley Aceto

My name is Ashley Aceto and I graduated with a Bachelor's Degree in Public Relations and Business and Organizational Communications with a minor in Consumer Marketing. My most recent intern experience was with The Summit County Historical Society. I learned how to run social media sites including Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. I also showed my skills in designing flyers, invitations and program booklets for events.

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