BMW: Applying a brand example to the engagement blueprint process

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Using the BMW brand as an example, automotive expert Daniel Davenport illustrates how understanding the brand promise at the global level and the product level is essential in crafting a customer experience that delivers on the buyers’ expectations.

BMW is an iconic brand that has thrived over its long history and sets the bar for the automotive industry for awareness, respect, and power. We are going to use the BMW brand as an example in the engagement blueprint process in part because of that and in part because the good people at BMW were kind enough to make a publicly available brand page that clearly communicated the master brand and sub-brand attributes for our purposes here.

Brands must evolve over time and BMW is no different. In 1973, BMW introduced “The Ultimate Driving Machine,” a brand slogan that defined consumers’ awareness and expectations from BMW’s products and services for decades. Faced with many changes in the industry space, BMW’s new brand message embodies the current and future direction of the company: “The Driving Force of Mobility,” and exemplifies the broader role BMW will play in the new world of transportation.

BMW, however, is more than just one set of branded products or services, so while “The Driving Force of Mobility” is the master brand mission that everything aligns to there are sub-brands that help differential specific offerings.

Here are some examples of how the brand message translates across sub-brands.

  • BMW: “BMW is dedicated only to the driver. BMW doesn’t just build cars. The brand’s innovations create emotion, enthusiasm, fascination, and thrills.”
  • Rolls Royce: “Rolls-Royce Motor Cars is the most exclusive luxury automobile manufacturer in the world. Its vehicles are renowned for their supreme quality, exquisite hand craftsmanship and meticulous attention to detail.”
  • MINI: “MINI is straightforward, sincere, and authentic. MINI blends creativity with cleverness, offering an open platform for people, design, and a vibrant urban lifestyle.”
  • Alphabet: “Corporate customers are the focus of all that Alphabet does. The brand aims to be the leading provider of innovative fleet management and outstanding business mobility.”

Each of these statements ladders up to the overall brand mission of driving mobility but also has specific attributes that need to be understood and applied to all aspects of the product, the sales process, the customer service, and the employee’s training, tools, and orientation.

For instance, the actual car and its features, capabilities, and the ecosystem of services around it will be dramatically different for the MINI as opposed to the Rolls Royce. The MINI “maximizes your urban experience. Focused. Engaging. Inspiring.” Thus, every touchpoint in a customer journey, large or small, should reinforce the qualities of focusedengaging, and inspiring.

On the other hand, Rolls Royce is “sophisticated luxury in perfection” that “continues the finest traditions of the past, delivering the promise of effortless power, silence, and a ride that is likened to wafting along on a magic carpet.”

Can you imagine the customer service experience difference between an employee at a MINI service center vs that of a Rolls Royce service center? The MINI service center is in an urban setting, with a young customer representative, laser-focused on solving a problem while being personally engaging and embodying the inspiring persona of a hip city dweller. The Rolls Royce service center is completely different. Can you imagine creating the customer experience of a service center for either not understanding the brand position? How would you create tools or training for employees without a solid grounding in the brand position to drive the details of the why first, then the how, and the what?

Understanding the brand promise at the global level as well as the product level is essential to being able to craft customer experience that delivers on the expectations of the buyers of one brand vs another. Without a connection to the brand purpose and promise or the brand attributes there is nothing to attach a strategy, feature, or functions to an execution. Without a clear strategy there is no hope of creating peak moments that manifest themselves throughout the whole product ecosystem.

As we strive to help our clients understand, uncover and prioritize opportunities to improve across a wide range of capabilities ranging from CX to EX and enterprise architecture all the way to the actual design of physical products, we must have a method connected to the brand and the clients and agencies that create the brand foundations that define the why, the how, and the what.

To learn more about Capgemini’s automotive practice, contact Daniel Davenport at daniel.davenport@capgemini.com.

 

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