Solid basis for future potential
Today, the Mercedes ‘me’ world has over 100 digital services (digital extras) across nine topic-based categories (clusters).
MC was hired to identify the clusters and extras with the greatest potential for the future.
After analyzing the current situation concerning the digital extras and stakeholders in great detail, a research concept consisting of two pillars was developed in order to put a spotlight both on the internal and the external view of the Mercedes ‘me’ landscape in the different markets. When selecting the markets, the aim was to cover as many sales regions as possible and to find a wide range in terms of digital maturity and customer needs in the market. So we decided on the markets of Australia, Benelux, China, Germany, Italy, Japan, Mexico, South Korea, and the USA.
MC was responsible for the entire research aspect and initially conducted guide-based, 60-minute interviews with the market managers who are responsible for the digital extras in “their” market. The main topic was the expected future importance of the individual extras for the end customer and the future potential from the perspective of the market and dealer.
This was followed by a quantitative online survey with drivers of new Mercedes-Benz vehicles and direct competitors (Audi, BMW, Tesla). In each market we aimed for N=300 participants with 50% Mercedes-Benz drivers and 50% competitors. The total N of the survey was N=2,925. In terms of content, the focus was on the current frequency of use of the services and the perceived added value/attractiveness of the services, including the willingness to pay.
At the end of the project, we evaluated the data collected, consolidated the results, and created reports for all parties involved, from the working level to top management.
Three questions for
Consulting, Business Management,
Was was challenging for you during the project?
The project had a very high priority for the customer and we were under enormous time pressure from the start. We frequently had to prepare intermediate reports and present them to the customer. Moreover, it can be challenging to appease every single stakeholder, i.e., appropriately communicate which specific topic or market needs can be taken into account and which can’t.
What was the takeaway for you personally?
A renewed awareness of cultural differences in the markets and the associated different response behavior in interviews and surveys. The good and efficient cooperation across business units.
What does the future have in store?
Probably many more research activities concerning digital extras, because the topic “digitization” will be in focus, especially in connection with the luxury strategy of the brand. I also assume that research activities will become an even stronger and more natural part of consulting projects, because in volatile times with many fundamental changes, valid data from the parties involved – from decision-makers at Mercedes-Benz to dealers and end customers – is critical to making decisions.