Do to others what you want them to do to you

19 Oct 2015

Academics and the dark side

Many of us grew up watching Star Wars and the various films has had an impact on a number of us. Anyway, one of my papers is titled  "Customer relationship management: advances, dark sides, exploitation and unfairness." My friend Bang Nguyen (my co-author) came up with the name. He is a big sci-fi fan and though I have not confirmed it with him, you can probably guess where the phrase "dark sides" come from. In fact, he has written a few other papers with the phrase "dark side" in the title.

Today while going through some academic papers, I came across one with "dark side" in the title. This made me wonder and a quick search on Google Scholar reveals that there are around  3,920,000 paper with the phrase "dark side" in the title. When I restrict the search results to publications which came out this year (2015),   there were an astounding 50,100 results including books, chapters and journal papers.

I further narrowed down the search to the keywords "dark side marketing" and restricted to publications this year, gave me 8,770 results.

The Force is definitely with us.

12 Oct 2015

Malaysia is top market for luxury car brands in South East Asia

updated: 15/10/2015; 13/10/2015

The biggest car market in ASEAN is Indonesia (sales of 830096 units in 2014) followed by Thailand (with 579273 units sold) and Malaysia (444551 units sold) (ASEAN automative federation, 2014).

However, when it comes to luxury car brands, my research shows that Malaysia is the leading country in ASEAN.

For example, take the BMW group. 2014 was a fantastic year for them with record breaking sales through out the World (including the 3 countries listed above) with 2,117,965 BMW, MINI and Rolls-Royce vehicles sold. Let us compare the sales in these 3 countries:

1. Indonesia: 9,046 vehicles, comprising 7,808 BMWs, 655 MINIs and 583 BMW Motorrads
2. Thailand; 8,386 vehicles of both BMW and MINI brands
3. Malaysia: 9,419 vehicles with monthly sales upwards of 900 units.

Mercedes-Benz, which is the leading premium car brand in all the three countries also shows a similar trend.

Mercedes-Benz Thailand sold more vehicles with 11,524 units sold as compared to Malaysia (a record-breaking 9,419 vehicles) in 2014. In the first five months of this year, Mercedes-Benz Thailand took the lead in the premium car segment in the country with sales record of 4108 units. However, Mercedes-Benz Malaysia recorded their all-time sales record in the first quarter of 2015 with 5163 units passenger cars sold. This is also higher than in Indonesia which saw sales of 1800 cars between January and July 2015.

Though I cannot generalise based on sales figures of only two luxury car makers, preliminary results from other luxury companies also show that Malaysia is one of the top markets for their cars as well in the ASEAN region.

This thus leads to some interesting questions. Besides population and income, what do marketers also need to take into account when it comes to luxury products?

Sources:
  • http://www.bmw.co.th/th/en/general/bmwinsight/news_read.php?id=565&year=
  • https://www.press.bmwgroup.com/asia/pressDetail.html?title=bmw-group-indonesia-reports-significant-growth-in-volume-in-2013&outputChannelId=16&id=T0166566EN&left_menu_item=node__4100
  • http://paultan.org/2015/01/14/mercedes-benz-malaysia-record-sales-2014/
  • http://paultan.org/2015/06/03/mercedes-benz-malaysia-best-ever-sales-in-may-15/
  • http://www.mercedes-benz.com.my/content/media_library/malaysia/media_library/About_Us/events___sponsorship/2015_Events/pr-1st-half-sales-pdf.object-Single-MEDIA.tmp/MBM1H2015NewsRelease7Jul15.pdf