Will your ad spending be up or down in 2001, compared with 2000? By what percentage?
Our ad spending for 2001 will be comparable to our current budget.
What media mix do you expect for 2001? How does that compare with 2000?
Our media mix for 2001 will have greater emphasis on local marketing, and we'll be working with our retailers to identify those opportunities. We will continue focusing on traditional media, as well as an increased emphasis on the Internet.
Is the Internet still a good marketing tool for you? How will you use it in 2001?
The Internet is very important for us, especially when you consider our audience. Over 90 percent of our customers regularly use the Internet. We have just launched a new Web site to better meet the needs of our customers. We have also just hired a Web site manager and a new person in charge of our relationship marketing efforts.
How do you expect rebates and incentives to affect your marketing budget in 2001?
We don't really have rebates; we do support a lease program. I don't expect it to change for 2001.
What is the biggest launch you have coming up for 2001? When will it be?
Our biggest launch for 2001 will be the Freelander at the end of 2001, which will debut at the Detroit auto show. We are finalizing a number of prelaunch activities in connection with the Freelander. We are not ready to discuss this in more specific terms at this time.
What is your major marketing challenge for 2001?
The greatest marketing challenge for us will be to overcome a price perception that customers have of our Land Rover Discovery. Most people think it's in the $50,000 range. We are focusing our marketing efforts to inform people that it's competitively priced.
A second marketing effort will be directed at our Land Rover Centre initiative. These are stand-alone Land Rover retailers across the country. Currently, 85 out of 123 Land Rover outlets in the United States are considered Land Rover Centres. From the outside, the building doesn't look like a traditional retailer. Inside, there is a more casual atmosphere. Sales consultants, for example, wear khakis and Land Rover apparel. There's even a test track at each Centre.