In the recent past, navigation technologies have changed from a niche that provides competitive advantage to a must have prerequisite for automobiles. The focus has now shifted to increasing the accuracy, efficiency, speed, and reliability of the technology as a competitive advantage. Given that Ford Motor Company is the second largest in America and fifth largest globally auto manufacturing company (Porter, 2018), it is vital that the company leads the pack in best navigation technology so as to maintain competitive advantage. Thus, this paper presents a product strategy for Time Saving Navigation technology that will be added in Ford’s vehicles.
According to Keillor, Kohut, Walsh, and Hausknecht (2011), an effective product strategy must have vision, goals, and initiatives. The vision entails the potential market, target customers, competitive analysis, and entry to market. In this view, the potential market for Time Saving Navigation has been created by the technological advancements that have resulted in the prospects of the development of self-driving cars. In fact, some companies like Apple have already set out to develop navigation system that will help realize autonomous cars (Balakrishnan, 2017). Given that Apple is a tech company that specializes in electronics, its entry into automobile industry signifies the vast market available for navigation systems. The development of autonomous cars will increase pressure on the need for manual cars with efficient navigation systems. In addition, target customers include the millennials who are increasingly tech-savvy are highly attracted to products with sophisticated technology (Zhang, Di Benedetto, & Hoenig, 2009). The competitiveness of the technology will be due to the fact that Ford Motor Company will be the first auto manufacturer to develop a navigation system in-house, the technology will have competitive advantage in terms of compatibility with the vehicles hence increase its performance and attractiveness to the customers.
The major challenges facing Ford Motor Company include high costs compared to other industry players, sluggish innovation, increasing demand for safe vehicles, and limited global reach (Bielecki, 2016). Majority of these problems could be easily solved by increased competitive advantage. In this view, Time Saving Navigation will solve these problems by increasing the competitive strength of Ford’s vehicles. As such, Ford’s global scope especially in the developing countries where it is low (Bielecki, 2016) will increase by more than 20% in the first three years and with 50% after five years. Consequently, the revenues will increase by more than 60% after five years.
In order to achieve the goals noted above, Ford Motor Company must increase investments in research and development department specifically the quality control department. As noted by Kerin and Hartley (2016), the degree with which a product is accepted by consumers is dependent on the extent at which it solves their problems. Therefore, the research and development must ensure that the challenges currently faced by customers with contemporary navigation systems are addressed by Time Saving Navigation. Importantly, the company must use low cost ways of developing the technology to avoid increasing the already high prices of their products. Lastly, the company will invest more in the developing markets that are set to become the leading market for cars in the future.
- Balakrishnan, A. (2017). Apple just patented a navigation system for self-driving cars. Retrieved from https://www.cnbc.com/2017/12/21/apple-patents-navigation-system-for-self-driving-cars.html
- Bielecki, S. (2016). Ford CEO: To innovate, challenge customs and question traditions. Retrieved from https://engineering.stanford.edu/magazine/article/ford-ceo-innovate-challenge-customs-and-question-traditions
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