Jaguar and Land Rover are iconic brands that millions of customers love. The impressive cars that JLR makes evoke so much desire, pride and joy across the world. This puts both these brands in the coveted league of great global names, such as Apple, Sony, Starbucks and Louis Vuitton.
A friend of mine, who lives in Bangalore India, recently told me that his life’s dream is to own a bright red Land Rover Discovery Sport and take it on a trek across the mighty Himalayan mountains.
I also loved this spontaneous quote from a customer in Europe, who drove the Jaguar XE and conveyed her appreciation for its remarkable technological qualities: “It was amazing to drive hairpin bends down a mountainside in a car that just seemed made to do it. It was phenomenal fun. It felt like a dream.” It was equally uplifting to read this comment from a Range Rover customer in Oklahoma USA: “Unbelievable service from start to finish. I have never experienced car buying the Bob Moore and Range Rover way – it was incredible!”
While these positive customer comments tell us why Jaguar and Land Rover are great brands today, how do we ensure that both these brands stay great forever? We live in an increasingly competitive era, where new-age brands such as Uber, Amazon, Facebook and Tesla are contending fiercely for the mindshare of our consumers. How do we ensure that our own offerings are not repositioned by these brands? There is lots of evidence that great brands have to constantly strive to stay great in the minds of their customers – otherwise they can easily slip into oblivion, as has happened to once-famous names such as Kodak, Nokia, Oldsmobile, Pan Am and Oldsmobile.
If a brand has to stay great forever, there is only one silver bullet - we have to put our customers first. Specifically, we have to do three important things for our customers:
• Develop deep and unique insights into what our customers need
• Deliver superb products and services to our customers, which provide them with outstanding quality and value
• Delight our customers at every single touch point
These three Ds – Develop, Deliver and Delight – are indeed the foundation of the Tata Group’s Customer Promise, a promise that each of us in the Group should make to each of our customers, every single day.
To develop deep and unique insights into what our customers need it is, first and foremost, essential that we listen closely to them. We need to understand objectively what customers like about our products and, equally importantly, what they do not like.
Every customer is a human being and, therefore, we need to understand human and societal trends that can shape our products in the future. We also need to understand
what our customers do not need today or will not need in the future, so that we are not offering them redundant or useless features in our products. Great brands are constantly curious, in a childlike way, about their customers’ current and potential needs. This is how iconic offerings, such as the Sony Walkman, the Apple iPhone and Tetley round teabags have been created. Listening to customers is the best and most sustainable basis for creating future winners from the JLR stable.
While developing these insights, we should not forget that tomorrow’s customers are the millennials of today. These are young people, aged between 18 and 25 years, who will define how cars are bought and used over the next two decades. Do we know what they think about cars? Do we know what features are really, really important to them? Do we know how their shopping and viewing and driving behaviours are evolving? Who are their heroes, what do they admire? Do we listen carefully to what they are saying about us, and about the world in general, on social media? Great brands of tomorrow will be built on an excellent understanding of today’s millennials.
To deliver outstanding products to our customers, we have to ensure just one simple thing: that our cars are the finest in the world. At our engineering, design and test facilities, at our workshops and manufacturing factories, we have to commit to delivering the highest quality, benchmarked to the best globally. JLR’s commitment to introducing world-first technologies in its cars is a very important part of this voyage.
The brilliant, consistent design signatures of the Jaguar and Land Rover are
equally important. But most important, in my view, is how each of us think differently in our day-today jobs. How can we make a design or a process far more effective? How can we significantly lessen waste, which will lead to better genuine value delivery to our customers? How can our supply chain deliver every customer order in time? How can we contribute new and original ideas that will make JLR even more creative and innovative in responding to the needs of its customers? From the answers to these questions will come the delivery of outstanding products that will take the world by storm, time and time again.
Every smile on each of our customer’s face is worth its weight in gold. We have the ability to evoke this smile of delight at every customer touch point – when she or he drives the cars we make, pushes a button somewhere in the car, visits our dealer showrooms to make a purchase, seeks after-sales service for something that needs to be set right, watches our advertisements on television or visits our social media pages online; or perhaps is just lying back and thinking about where he should next take out his Jaguar or Land Rover car on a delightful expedition.
There are hundreds of such customer touch points. How do we make all of them come to vibrant life for our customers? In today’ world, customers seek not just product and service: they seek experiences. We have the
opportunity to shape these unique “Jaguar Land Rover experiences,” and thereby make many million customer smiles bloom every day, across the world.
DEVELOP, DELIVER, DELIGHT –
A RECIPE FOR GREATNESS
Develop, Deliver, Delight – these are the three strong pillars on which we must put our Customers First. These are the three touchstones, which Jaguar and Land Rover, and all of us who are part of JLR, must constantly use, as both these wonderful brands strive to remain great and iconic for many generations to come.
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