Last month the US Environmental Protection Agency order VW to recall 482,000 VW and Audi cars produced since 2009. Worldwide, some 11 million diesel vehicles must be brought into compliance after the news broke out.
The scandal is already taking a toll in the marketplace; the average list and auction prices for used VW’s have dropped; also, the car maker lost the top spot in sales and has been replaced by Toyota as the world’s biggest automaker.
It is premature to comment on any specific ad plans for the brand; but the crisis needs to be treated like an oil spill and Volkswagen needs to do the right thing and develop a new corporate strategy that involves making up for the harm and invest in other environmental projects if they plan to restore their reputation and the trust of consumers.
VW’s biggest long-term concern is reclaiming consumer trust; in order to do that they need to fix the millions of cars that were sold around the world and compensate for the damage.
The growing emissions scandal at Volkswagen is already harming the automaker’s brand image on social media and beyond. VW needs to take this is an opportunity for the brand to be transparent now that consumers are paying attention to what they’re doing, and even when future ad plans remain in the dark and media presence was put on hold, it will be important to follow this story in the upcoming months and analyze how VW plans to move forward to address the issue.
Global brands have long faced the challenge of adjusting their brand’s strategies and values to adapt to different cultural environments and local markets. The digital revolution combined with the re-energization of local pride movements around the world is taking global brands and their marketing practices to a new era.
The McCann WorldGroup believes that brands need to prepare for this new era of Deep Globality as they’ve called it; people want exposure to other cultures but they also feel proud of their country’s identity, companies need to have a universal appeal and have a positive impact for local consumers.
The new era of “deep globality” does not change any of the core principles of brand marketing. If you can ensure your brand translates culturally and the products that are offered remain consistent across markets then the brand will be able to co-exist with any different cultures.
It is important for any marketing professional to understand the concept of global marketing. For example many people in India do not eat beef, so if a company selling hamburgers was going to market in India they would need to localize their product.
Most people see globalization as a good thing and the internet boom has allowed everyone to have access to cultures different from one’s own. However, at the same time people want exposure, they also feel proud of where they live and marketers around the world should be able to see that and find a common ground between their company’s values and the different set of values each culture has.
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