Monday, November 30, 2009

Toyota-Lexus Recall...Or Not

The controversy over the Toyota and Lexus floor mats continues.

We happen to own one of the models that is under investigation, a 2006 IS-250. Several things about this are bothering me.

The only thing we have received in the mail, is a letter asking us to remove the driver's side floor mat. No offer to replace the floor mat......
Click here for a copy of the notice

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has called their floor mat statement "Inaccurate and Misleading" Why? Because the NHTSA believes that there is a defect in the cars, after an incident that killed a family of four that could not stop an accelerating Lexus.

This past Monday Toyota released a statement denying any finding of fault on Toyota's part or any defect in its cars in relation to the deadly floor mat safety advisory issued in late September. Today, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) is saying that Toyota's information is "inaccurate and misleading" and that there is in fact a defect in the 3.8 million cars affected.
Click here for full story

Still nothing from Toyota/Lexus in response to this...... So are we safe or not????

Thursday, November 5, 2009

Quilted Northern, Economics, Psychology and Marketing

Any business with a product to market should understand the intertwining of economics, psychology and marketing.

This is where Quilted Northern missed the target. With the case of the smaller toilet paper roll, it's a quite simple example.

If you raise the price of each roll of toilet paper 2 cents, it is unlikely that your consumer will even notice the 10 to 25 cent raise in their toilet paper package, especially if you raise it slowly over time. The consumers that do notice will either stop buying the product or they will decide they don't care and continue to buy. The ones who stop will be a small percentage and may have stopped buying anyway.

On the other hand a consumer that pays the price they have been paying for their toilet paper but opens it and finds a smaller roll feels cheated and ripped off. The actual visual of a smaller product has a major impact on buying decisions, especially when there is a somewhat standard size for toilet paper.

This also effects any loyalty the consumer may have with the brand. They think "this brand cheated me" and will most likely never come back to it.

This intense feeling of being cheated by a company turns viral and you have rip off reports and blogs like mine reporting this feeling.

You never see rip off reports or blogs reporting their toilet paper now costs 15 cents more per package.

The way I see it, Georgia Pacific and Quilted Northern could use a good refresher in the importance of the psychology behind consumer purchases and marketing.

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Quilted Northern - the tiny roll

I have long been a buyer of Quilted Northern toilet paper, you know you have your favorites....

Last week I opened a package and did a double take. It looked smaller. Alot smaller. I put it away and didn't think about it for a couple of days. Then when I got it out to put on the holder I could really tell it was smaller. A 1/2 inch shorter and and smaller in girth. But.....the price was the same.....what's happening here??

When I first researched this I found a press release from Georgia Pacific that I can no longer find, however someone posted a "ripoff report" , which made me laugh a little, but the reply from Georgia Pacific was the same as the press release I had found earlier.

We understand you may have some concerns about the roll width and/or sheet count of Quilted Northern Soft & Strong(r). As noted at the bottom of the package, Quilted Northern Soft & Strong(r) is about 1/2 inch narrower than before, and we have slightly reduced the sheetcount.

Because of today's economy, cost is a factor. We made the decision to slightly reduce the roll to bring you the bathroom tissue you trust and not raise our price to retailers. Quilted Northern Soft & Strong continues to provide the cleanliness and comfort you have come to expect, making it a great value in today's economy. As always, Quilted Northern Soft & Strong(r) is thick, absorbent, and gentle on your skin. The bathroom tissue features strength and durability for cleanliness, with softness and thickness for comfort. With Quilted Northern Soft & Strong(r), you do not have to compromise comfort for clean."

So no more purchasing the Quilted Northern, any suggestions?