Skip to main content

Bailouts for unreliable brands?

Consumers assess Quality on two generic parameters. Reliability and Attributes. The higher the two of these are, the greater the quality. But what needs to be noted is that on the former parameter, brands don't have a choice. I mean reliability levels can only be high. If they were to fall, it wouldn't matter that the product's got a lot of features, it would still be perceived as poor quality. On the second parameter, namely attributes, brands depending on who their target segments are, can either keep it low or pack themselves with features. If the Mass consumer is the target, attributes have to be kept low, so costs can be kept low, so prices can be rock bottom. Its the mass low-cost model. Remember, on reliabilty, there ain't a choice, even if its the Mass consumer on your radar.

Imagine if a brand were low on attributes and low on reliabilty. Only a miracle can keep such a brand in business. Or socialism, the way Obama's keeping Government Motors in the running. Or the way Hindustan Motors is kept alive in India.

The latest brand that nosedives when you consider both reliability and attributes is Air India. The irony? Its still seeking government funds to keep itself alive. Alive so it can operate with low levels of reliability (its just been a day since the nightmare passengers had to go through on an Air India flight to Saudi Arabia), and low levels of attributes (people who have travelled on the airline know how lousy their service is).

Air India is in deep trouble. It operates with neither reliability nor attributes. You gotta always say a prayer before you fly it, and also keep the prayer going so you can have the baggage arrive with you, encounter a sweet airhostess on board...

Tell you what, this is one case where even prayers fail.


Popular posts from this blog

Situational Involvement of Consumers

There are two types of involvement that consumers have with products and services, Situational and Enduring. Situational involvement as the term suggests, occurs only in specificsituations whereas Enduring involvement is continuous and is more permanent in nature.

Decisions to buy umbrellas in India are driven by the onset of Indian monsoon. Monsoon rains arrived in India over the South Andaman Sea on May 10 and over the Kerala coast on May 28, three days ahead of schedule. But then, after a few days of rain, South India is witnessing a spate of dry weather. Temperatures are soaring in the north of India. The Umbrella companies in the state of Kerala are wishing for the skies to open up. So is the farming community and manufacturers of rural consumer products whose product sales depend totally on the farming community. The Met. department has deemed this dry spell as 'not unusual'.

India's monsoon rains have been static over the southern coast since last Tuesday because of a…

Prior Hypothesis Bias

Prior Hypothesis bias refers to the fact that decision makers who have strong prior beliefs about the relationship between two variables tend to make decisions on the basis of those beliefs, even when presented with the evidence that their beliefs are wrong. Moreover, they tend to use and seek information that is consistent with their prior beliefs, while ignoring information that contradicts these beliefs.

From a strategic perspective, a CEO who has a strong prior belief that a certain strategy makes sense might continue to pursue that strategy, despite evidence that it is inappropriate or failing.

Ref : Strategic Management : An Integrated Approach, 6e, Charles W L Hill, Gareth R Jones

Wearing Cuba means Walking Cuba

There's something ethereal about wearing 'Cuba'. Suddenly its the streets of Havana, smoke filled and lit by the groovin', more than the lights. The bars are packed to hilt and dreamy women seem to glide by. The feeling's beyond magical.

How did I get there?

Before I explain, I gotta tell you about the power of brands to take you places. Brands bring with them an ability to prompt you to conjure up the unreal. They can transform your reality into fantasy. And consumers are more than willing partners to brands as the drudgery they face in everyday life begs an injection of fantasy. Brands that operate in a zone of the unreal do the conjuring act as there's nothing else that consumers can call for, while making judgements. For instance, what should I be judging the lip paint on? Its colour and tone or its ability to turn me into a diva?

Cuba's a perfume. The moment I wear it, I am traipsing the streets of Havana. Its smoke filled bars I see. Its music I hear and…