MemberOctober 10, 2021 at 3:58 pm
Been seeing more about the latter lately and it seems worth bringing up the notion of tying the two together.
First, let’s concede the unfortunate choice of names. I bet I’m not alone in hearing Clint Eastwood’s voice whenever I see the word “punk” and all the bias that comes along with that. Setting that aside…
The ideal of the movement is envisioning a utopian society where all the tech, commerce, etc. is environmentally friendly and sustainable. The activist part that hopefully follows is to do what you can to move towards that ideal.
Whether any one of us think that is a worthy or achievable goal matters somewhat less than the fact that there is this self organizing group of people who do. And while I expect many of those folks might first argue not needing a car at all, and rather just walking or peddle-biking about town; when they get to a point of acknowledging the constraints of individual fitness, weather and range required, especially in our current circumstances, Aptera would seem to be the first, best choice of cars for folks with this mindset. The hyper efficiency, solar power, and minimalist qualities promised by the vehicle would seem to check a lot of rather compelling boxes for such folks.
I hope that Aptera and those who would promote the brand recognize this pool of potential buyers and are crafting messaging well suited to appeal to them. I would already accept that the answer is yes, so more a matter of more of the same, and perhaps seeking out the community hubs to spread the word.
MemberOctober 10, 2021 at 4:39 pm
Aptera certainly has the goal of improving the state of the environment by building the most efficient transportation in the world thus offering anyone the opportunity to drive with far less adverse impact to the environment than other forms of transportation. However, they are a business and have to make revenue and profit to stay in business. This means they must focus on the most lucrative market segment for their product based on a set of proven “Market segment qualification criteria”
What are the indicators that would qualify this group as a viable market target? What percentage of the EV market do they represent currently and in the future? What percentage of this group currently have EV vehicles? Do a relatively significant number of these people reside in an area where Aptera plans to do early marketing and production delivery?
I believe the Aptera Marketing Group are well qualified and will plan and execute and effective marketing strategy to insure the success of Aptera in the EV market place. Hopefully the group you identify are a significant segment of the market place and will be targeted at the appropriate time.
MemberOctober 11, 2021 at 6:19 am
Appreciate your comments on the Aptera marketing decisions, John. I’d be very curious to get a peek at the Aptera marketing plan — what socioeconomic groups, what messages to use for those groups.
For example, I note that the people depicted in the official Aptera promo videos were 20-30 somethings who were camping, surfing, and motoring down California coast highways. I didn’t see anyone in the videos over 50 or grabbing groceries for the week in a crowded urban environment. Yet many reservation holders don’t live in California and the 30K+ purchase price of the Aptera probably puts it out of reach of the average younger buyer who’s moving out of their parent’s house and into an apartment or into their first home.
My own profile is that I’m married, 72, retired, an “early adopter” living in the Midwest, environmentally conscious (e.g. I have solar panels on my roof), car enthusiast (have had sports cars, EV’s, and hybrids), financially I reckon I’d be categorized as upper Middle Class, Aptera will be a second car predominantly for local travel while we’ll use my wife’s Subaru for longer trips.
I don’t recall being asked any marketing type questions when I placed my deposit for the Aptera so I wonder if the company has sifted through the folks who have placed advanced orders and learned what marketing segments there are in the existing customer base so they can target their marketing efforts.
MemberOctober 11, 2021 at 8:23 am
You make an excellent point! I’ve placed a reservation. I’m about 60 years old. I plan to use my Aptera wherever it will take me, from local, in town to cross-country on business trips but also for off-roading and camping. I plan for it to be my primary vehicle.
I mentioned it to a friend of mine in his 30s and he already sent in an investment and is considering making a reservation, and as of recent, also became an investor. He plans to use it for pleasure including driving it into the country-side.
And then we have my dad who’s in his 80s who’s also made his reservation. So, it would seem that this vehicle appeals to a very wide cross-section of the population, and for different purposes.
Just from my experience alone I believe that such considerations should be made when planning strategics for a marketing campaign. The Aptera may enjoy a much wider appeal than the current advertising campaign might suggest.
MemberOctober 11, 2021 at 9:01 am
Ray, your post are articulate, very polished, always include some reinforcement for the poster you are responding to or make a statement that “Connects” you to that poster, avoid any confrontation, and then tactfully put forth your proposition or your inquiry. I suspect you, even if retired, are a consummate marketing person.😉
As far as I can tell, Aptera does not fit the mold in any traditional sense to include marketing. Their CMO, Sarah Hardwick, has a little different take on marketing. Here is a video by Sarah that highlights her approach. She is using this values based approach for Aptera. You can see that approach in the collateral content they have on the site. This video is from a time she was working as a consultant. Later she ran her own successful company that fell on hard times when the pandemic hit. She was the marketing person for Aptera 1.0.
I am sure there is a marketing plan being executed but we will not have the “Opportunity” to see or review it. If you research Sarah and her company you will find that there is the data analysis component that seems to drive marketing today.
Aptera is an engineering company. Driven by engineering as opposed to marketing and sales or finance the traditional drivers of business you and I may be accustom to. I think, because Aptera 1.0 failed in part because of the interference of these types of people in the business. I believe the CO-CEOs have a lessons learned from that and will not allow the “Venture capital” syndrome to interfere with a path to success this time. I 100% support that mind set. With my business hat on Aptera has been incredibly successful on a shoe string budget and minimal staff.
My profile is very similar to yours part of which you pointed out in the post on the Genetic predecessors of the Aptera as you “Connected with me. I do not accept however that we are “Brothers from different mothers” 😉 I am 77, semi retired (Still accept consulting engagements for interesting projects) probably upper middle class, married (Empty nest), early adapter. My background is 50/50 engineering and business development. (Three successful IPOs as a partner) politics, moderate independent. I live in Florida. I currently drive a Tesla Model 3. I am a practicing Six Sigma MBB and most of my recent engagements have been for this skill set to improve R&D and production processes and to conduct competitive analysis using a proprietary model I developed when still working full time.
I think generally, you will know better than I, the “Growth” market for EVs is expected to be affluent young couples/families. I find currently, as I attend EV Events, a preponderance of older affluent couples (Maybe the only ones that can afford expensive EVs at the current price point??) very few if any families or young people. Most have already purchased an EV. I try to select a pseudo random sample of people at these events and have a set of marketing oriented questions I ask and do some statistical analysis on the growing data base of their responses. I do this for my own enlightenment and because I am a serial data addict. Still too soon to draw any statistical conclusions. One thing I do find, is nearly a complete lack of knowledge of Aptera.
MemberOctober 11, 2021 at 2:25 pm
Hi, John. Thanks for your kind words. Just as Aptera is trying to make the world a better place one vehicle at at time, I’d like to think I can make the digital world better one thoughtful word at a time. It is far too easy on a forum to unintentionally step on each others toes. I always appreciate a little encouragement and so I try to sow what I want to reap.
You certainly have a very impressive work resume and a killer skillset. Enjoyed your comments on the marketing process and your observations in the field. Haven’t had a chance to see the Sarah video whose link you supplied but I was aware she was onboard back with version 1.0 Aptera and seems to have a real fire in the belly when it comes to promoting the current incarnation of the vehicle. I presume a new enterprise like Aptera needs an enthusiastic and committed team. I’m gratified to have a chance to get to know more of the folks working “behind the curtain”. Maybe Aptera will throw a big bash for the first production example of the final Aptera (hopefully Fall of 2022) and we can hoist a Taco in San Diego with a few hundred other Aptera fans?
MemberOctober 11, 2021 at 7:29 am
I’m pretty happy with how Aptera has been portrayed so far – This is a good picture of that:
If owners want to tie it into solarpunk I have no issues with that – it seems to fit well. Solarpunk is an art form correct? So it should be fairly easy to make some artwork with Aptera in it?
MemberOctober 11, 2021 at 7:56 am
Hi there, Peter. Yes, the video you attached addresses some of the points I raised in my previous comment about settings and portrayals in promotional videos. Just to clarify what I was trying to convey, let me say this. I’m totally OK with pitching the vehicle to anyone and everyone. I want Aptera to succeed and I’m anxiously awaiting getting my hands on my own Aptera. I also have nothing against my colleagues under 40 or against California — some of best friends live in California LOL. I was merely raising the point that there are likely multiple segments of potential buyers in the marketplace (probably several I haven’t thought of either) and while, any marketing campaign cannot hope to appeal to everyone, I hope the Aptera marketing efforts don’t miss significant segments of potential buyers. Go Aptera!