Blog post #5: Harley Davidon Rides to the future

Greetings fellow riders!

In my last blog post I discussed the struggles H-D has overcome but do we know whats at stake for the future? Its really all a matter of opinion. To some, they don’t believe that they will be able to keep adjusting to the newer generations interests and others think the exact opposite of the product.

According to Jonathon Baskin, in his article Harley-Davidson Will Be A Case History In Social Branding, “H-D is either engaging with a new generation of customers, as the company claims, or slowly managing its way into irrelevance, as the numbers might suggest. What plays out over the next few years will be a case history in the promise or peril of social brands.”

In my opinion I believe that Harley Davidson will never die out. It may have its rough years in the future but so has every other motorcycle company.

New 2015 Indian now made by Polaris Photo credited: http://polaris.hs.llnwd.net/o40/ind/2015/img/model-overview/media-viewer/large/2015-roadmaster/photos-large-10.jpg

For example, Indian motorcycles shut down in 1953 but was recently purchased by Polaris in 2011, and they are now one of Harley’s Top competitors according to the Indian motorcycle home page.

Now, I’m not saying that H-D will be dying out anytime soon but I do believe that they will have a few rough years ahead of themselves like all motorcycle companies will. The older generation of riders are getting to the point now where they are no longer able to balance a bike on their own.

2015 H-D Sportster Photo Credited: http://www.harley-davidson.com/content/dam/h-d/images/motorcycles/my15/carousel/dom/15-hd-forty-eight-large.png

My generation is the new upcoming image for H-D, and they have adjusted to that by making bikes like the Harley Soft-tail and the Sportster, while keeping the Street Glide and other full dresser bikes that the older generation enjoys. This brings in people from all ages to buy Harley Davidson’s.

In my opinion, as it probably is the same as other motorcycle fans, Harley Davidson will continue to surprise us with new designs and motorcycles every year and will have new people coming in each year to purchase their bikes. In the end it all really depends on the economy. Either way, H-D will be a case history on the future of social branding.

Safe Travels everyone!

Brent

Resources:

http://www.forbes.com/sites/jonathansalembaskin/2013/07/12/harley-davidson-will-be-a-case-history-in-social-branding/

http://www.indianmotorcycle.com

Icon Blog #4: Harley Rebounds from Recession

We meet again fellow Harley fans!

In the last blog post I discussed how Harley Davidson reaches out to people through organizations and other marketing strategies. Partnering with other organizations has really become popular in recent years so people from both organizations will learn about one another and expand their organization.

Granted Harley partnered with “Wounded Warrior Project,” because its for a great cause, but part of the reason was so they will attract more people to buy Harley Davidson. Harley Davidson continues to do these types of things so their business does not run into the ground like many thought it would in 2009.

2007 Harley Davidson Deuce, One of the motorcycles that Wandell dicontinued when becoming CEO. Photo credited by: http://cimg.carsforsale.com/335684/F3EA3F44-7A06-4402-8153-5B2F0BA0A2F4_1.jpg

According to https://www.toledoblade.com, “Harley Davidson hired an outsider named Keith Wandell as the CEO in 2009. Wandell grabbed the handlebars at the motorcycle maker in the heart of the economic crisis.” That year, Harley lost $55 million because buying a motorcycle stopped being an option for many consumers.

Little did we know Wandell had a plan to turn this crisis around by using temporary workers, which in turn would time Harley’s production closer to the peak bike-buying season. This helped Harley save time and money.

One of the biggest changes Harley made was getting rid of some popular secondary brands of Harley’s and focused less on middle-aged men and more on making big, powerful, premium priced motorcycles (https://www.toledoblade.com)

New 2014 Harley Davidson Street Glide Photo Credited by: http://images.motorcycle-usa.com/PhotoGallerys/2014-Street-Glide-Special.jpg

Accoridng to https://www.toledoblade.com, in 2013 Harley Davidson made $624 million which has been the best annual profit since 2008. This years first quarter has boosted profit by 30 percent.

Although Harley Davidson has been the most well known motorcycle brand in the world, some believe the crisis that happened in 2009 could have gone a total different route and possibly gone under. Thankfully Wandell turned the company completely around. Harley is now in a position to grow and is in better shape to weather any future downturn they may come up on. I know from experience I have seen more Harley’s on the road in the last year more that I have in the last five years combined. It can only get better from here on out!

Til’ next time, safe travels everyone!

-Brent

Resouces: https://www.toledoblade.com

Icon Blog #2: Harley Attract’s All Kind’s of People

Greetings riders, we meet again!

Harley Davidson logo and one of many slogans – Photo Credited by: https://brentchristeson.files.wordpress.com/2014/10/5bdf5-harleydavidsonlogo12.jpg

In my last blog post I talked very briefly about the history behind Harley Davidson along with how this company started and progressed to be the leading motorcycle company in the United States.

I think it is very important to inform you all about why Harley is the #1 motorcycle today and why everyone looks at them before any other motorcycle manufacturing company.

Harley Davidson Logo Tattoo – Photo Credited by: http://media-cache-cd0.pinimg.com/236x/9a/50/b7/9a50b719d113cd4635a74dcca697e84a.jpg

There are many motorcycles companies that have just as good of bikes as Harley Davidson’s, but why is it that Harley continues to sell better? One word, “branding.” Harley’s unique logo  shown to the left has stayed the same for over 50 years which has helped with their consistency and success still today according to http://www.forbes.com.

Harley’s brand name/Logo is the most well-known motorcycle logo in the world. Some may say you are paying the extra price just to have that famous logo slapped on the side of the tank, but its more so everything that comes with the bike when you buy it According to jamesrussellpublishing.biz/beforeyoubuyharley.html. Whether its parts for your bike or clothing, there more than likely is a Harley Davidson store within 30 miles of where you are from that you can purchase everything you could think of for you or your Harley.

Harley Davidson Baby Clothing – Photo Credited by: http://www.harley-davidsonkidsgear.com/images/harley-products/zoom/harley-davidson-2252200.jpg.

Before I owned a Harley, I owned a Honda before this and I had such a hard time finding any parts or clothing that I wanted. Where I am from most people look at you differently if you don’t own a Harley Davidson. Before I owned a bike I bought Harley clothing mainly because it looks cool and you want to fit in with the other bikers. Harley’s branding has got to the point where others will buy anything that has that famous logo on it whether they own a Harley or not!

Until next time, safe travels!

Brent

Icon Blog 1: Live to Ride, Ride to Live

Greetings my fellow riders!

Harley-Davidson Logo – Photo Credited by: http://motorcollections.blogspot.com/2012/09/harley-davidson-logo-harley-davidson.html

If you are a fellow Harley Davidson rider or even a fan of motorcycles, then you probably want to know a little bit more about Harley rather than the famous logo that is slapped on the side of the tank.

Harley Davidson is Americas number one iconic motorcycle manufacturer. That being said I feel its history, origin, and significance that puts them above every other motorcycle company is worth knowing about if someone really wants to know their motorcycle.

I feel it is necessary for me to learn, explore, and share how this iconic brand has developed and expanded throughout the entire world, not only becoming America’s number one motorcycle company, but a top seller throughout the world as well.

First Harley Davidson Motorcycle – Photo credited to: http://www.hdhistory.com/tag/ole-evinrude/

According to harley-davidson.com, the very first Harley Davidson motorcycle was founded out of a small shed in 1903 by William S. Harley and brothers Arthur and Walter Davidson in Milwakee, Wisconsin. It all truly began in 1901, when William Harley made his first blue print of an engine designed to fit into a bicycle at age 21.

Many motorcycle companies were springing up across the country in the early 1900’s. According to funtrivia.com, Harley Davidson lead the country along with Indian motorcycles until 1953 when Indian could no longer stay in business. That being said, Harley Davidson motorcycles are so rooted in American culture that the history of the company intertwines with the history of America itself according to motorcycle-usa.com.

The best part about Harley Davidson is how much it has expanded and become the company they are today. Today, Harley has a bike for every persons tastes and desires. It doesn’t matter what the price is, people will always look at buying a Harley first because of it’s dependability, history, and success. Also, who doesn’t love the distinct sound of a Harley?!

Safe travels,

Brent

 

Links to research:

http://www.funtrivia.com/en/world/harley-davidson-16209.html

http://www.motorcycle-usa.com/684/2625/Motorcycle-Article/Harley-Davidson-Motorcycle-History.aspx

 

discussing the history of Harley Davidson motorcycles and how they have progressed and expanded throughout the years