Word On The Tweets : The Buick Brand

This category in the blog will feature searches for keywords on Twitter.com to get the general opinion of various people online. I will post the comments I find and comment on them. The first one out is a search on the Buick brand and its new vehicles including the 2010 Buick Lacrosse and the new 2011 Buick Regal shown below.

2010 Buick Lacrosse

2011 Buick Regal

@DorianFracois writes “umm iono wats going on in the world but this new buick lacrosse is the#business!”

This is what Buick is looking for… a younger audience that actually thinks its vehicles are interesting, or even “the business.” The average age of the new Enclave owner was 15 years younger than the company average… the new Lacrosse sems to be heading in a similar direction

@RelleRealRelle writes “That new Buick looks nice. I hope it doesn’t share the same qualities as it’s predecessors”

A good and a bad one here for the brand. The good thing is that this person also thinks the new Buick… we can assume a Lacrosse.. looks great, but he is also worried about the quality. This is a hurdle the company needs to still get over unfortunately, anyone who drove a Buick in the 90’s is going to wonder whether the doors may fall off their brand new Lacrosse.

@danielchou writes “Cars I’m now considering: Mazda6, Chevy Volt, and Buick Regal. Leaning heavily toward that last one!”

An interesting choice of cars here, Lately I have been trying to think of what vehicles someone might compare to the new Regal and I was not expecting the Mazda6 to be one of them. Nor the Chevy Volt… which should be a bit more expensive than the $27,500 est base price of the Regal…unless it gets the $14,000 tax credit or whatever craziness GM cooks up.

@REALGMI writes “members aren’t liking the lack of exterior colors available on the new @Buick Regal..no cocoa, no brights!”

So this one is the actual GM inside news blog, but it is saying that its members, the people that care the most about this car most likely, dislike the color choices. I don’t think this will hurt them too bad…especially if they are asking for “brights?” If you want a bright green car… thats your problem.

@Hoeppner writes “I just watched a video about the Buick Regal and I have to say I am very impressed. I have never been a Buick fan until now”

This shows a couple of things… first this guy actually watched a video featuring a Buick…which most people remotely interested in cars would not do years prior to this…This shows that he may have heard good things about it or been really bored. And secondly he even liked the new Regal enough to announce it on Twitter, both good signs.

@philipbarrett writes “#GM #Buick comparing yourself to imports is not working for you, ads look like Toyota/Lexus commercials!”

The new ads for the Buick Lacrosse seem almost identical to that of Lexus and thats not a good thing according to philipbarrett. I believe this to be true as well, if they are going to move in a new direction they need to quit following in the footsteps of its competitors and step out on their own.

5 thoughts on “Word On The Tweets : The Buick Brand

  1. Actually my point on the Lexus/Toyota ads was slightly more nuanced. The message I took away from the commercials was “hey, we’re really not as good as the Lexus/Toyota but we cost less.” This strategy completely ignores the fact that a large part of the automobile buying decision is based on the acquisition of a vehicle that reinforces an image of the self. Sitting at a stop light, does the purchaser want to feel that others are looking over thinking that he/she really wanted the Lexus but couldn’t afford it? GM marketers would be wise to revisit the history of Packard whose “we’re cheaper than a Cadillac” campaign was the final nail in the brand’s coffin.

    By comparison, Cadillac seems to be much more astute. Pitching your vehicles against the Euro sports sedans on influential shows like Top Gear (both May & Clarkson loved the car) and the race track is a bold move that stands a good chance of succeeding long term. The brand acquires credibility even if the challenges are unsuccessful and the position of plucky underdog is not necessarily a disadvantage (as Audi has proved).

  2. Thanks for expanding, I totally get what you mean. If you contrast the new Buick marketing to Cadillac they seem to be on two entirely different levels (which GM may want… but I digress) Cadillac has gotten really bold with claims like “may the best car win” really trying to show they can compete with the Germans again.. whilst Buick simple attains to be ‘almost a Lexus’ seemingly.

    GM needs to quickly establish what they want from the brand or else they are gonna let it slip away like it has been up until the country started watching their every decision.

  3. Part of my job involves my driving in a different rental car almost every week. This has given me a pretty full perspective on the upper mid-range offerings from every major manufacturer and regrettably for GM, I cannot see how anything but perhaps Cadillac and the truck division can survive. The Koreans already produce a far superior vehicle (“almost a Kia?”) and the Japanese aren’t even playing in the same league any more. My recent Malibu had a trunk that didn’t open enough for a suitcase, huge blind spots, no rear visibility and the worst torque steer I’ve ever experienced. An Equinox had a steering wheel texture that blistered palms after 100 miles and window switches that required the driver to reach behind to operate! How does someone at the plant actually approve these vehicles? By contrast, a week earlier I heard, “nice car, what is this?” It was a Hyundai.

    GM cannot survive by playing catch-up to brands that are constantly evolving in themselves, they need products that can surpass them and be priced competitively. This is not an achievable task by Detroit, the Volt is an interesting step and will make for a unique “halo” vehicle but a $40K plug-in cannot not save the company.

    I predict a slow fading away of GM, their demise temporarily staved off only by government hand outs, fleet sales and rebates. Eventually they will be broken up and sold off piecemeal.

  4. I agree with Philip GM is in possibly the worst shape of any car manufacturer, TATA motors is in better shape. They went into forced bankruptcy and “restructured” the company. They have made strides we al foresaw happening and should have happened years ago: selling off the fat. COUGH Hummer COUGH. But this is nowhere near what they need to be doing. If you are looking from the outside in to GM why would you even want to deal with them. I understand GM does have some extremely brand loyal Americans especially for Chevy, but those people are not going to raise them from the ashes.

    They just dont understand how to run a car company in the 21st century. They are stuck in the old ways and it has, sadly, become part of their corporate identity. At least Buick is trying to redefine themselves and more power to Hyundai for actually making cars that don’t look like they are made of plastic anymore. However, GM goes from their typical sheltered approach to car sales by building it bigger to the Chevy Volt. They can not expect it to turn their yearly billion dollar losses around. The Toyota Prius was a freak of nature, the car shot out of the gate on the heels of the whole “global warming” fascination. And became the best selling hybrid in the market. The volt is nowhere near as nice, sure it could be cool but cool does not save companies. The volt is the perfect example of how they are stuck in the old ways. They take a hybrid and make it faster. They really should have made the Camaro better. I know I will get hated on for saying that, but its true. The hype was huge during transformers and by the time it had come out they practically missed the whole excitement. The challenger still has it trumped.

    And Philip had it dead on by saying they will eventually be broken up and sold off. This is the beginning of the end of the comeback for GM. The parts are worth far more than the whole. To every company out there, not just car companies, this is what happens when you refuse to adapt to an ever changing world market.

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