How marketing myopia can spell trouble for business
Consider the facts. According to Siam, Bajaj’s cumulative domestic scooter sales during April to November 2009 was 3,356 units, a decline from a similar period the previous year. The Indian scooter market, currently at 1.2 million, is growing at 15%. From 12% of two wheelers in 2008, scooters are expected to contribute 20% to two-wheeler sales in 2010. The scooter market has grown at double digits in the last fiscal compared to the motorcycle market, which grew only at 2.6%. Honda Motorcycle and Scooter India has just started a third assembly line at its plant to meet growing demand for scooters.
It would appear that the venerable Bajaj brand is falling into a classic trap of marketing myopia. Almost 50 years ago, the late Ted Levitt coined the term ‘marketing myopia’ for a firm or manager’s approach and thinking that is product-focused. He suggested that the reason railroad companies in the US declined in the early- and mid-20th century was that they thought they were in the railroad business—not the transportation business; they thought that customers were buying ‘railroad’ services from them—not the benefit of being transported
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