If you haven’t checked in lately with GM’s top blogger Bob Lutz (he’s GM’s global vice president for product development), head on over to FastLane right now. His most recent entry – Stop Me If You’ve Heard This One Before – is a cogent rant on GM’s “image” problem. He comes about as close as he can to acknowledging the elephant in the room (GM’s financial woes). He writes:
This issue, this question of how do we increase awareness, improve our
image, and enhance public opinion of our cars and trucks, is weighing
on everyone’s mind in this company, from the plant floors to the
boardroom. We are all weary of hearing that “GM doesn’t have any
vehicles that people want” or that GM “doesn’t excite anyone” or
doesn’t have any products that are “relevant.”
And then further on, after citing a bunch of recent awards for GM cars (the Solstice, the Corvette, the Hummer):
And yet, the coverage of our financial state [I bolded this] continues to point out our
alleged lack of cars and trucks that people want. All the while more
than a quarter of the vehicles sold in America are ours.
We need to step up our non-traditional communications and word of
mouth, and get our message directly to the people on a grass roots
level. This blog is one example — but we need more avenues, and bigger
ideas. What do you think?
I don’t know about you but that sounds pretty transparent to me for a Fortune 500 blog. Translation: we’ve got a problem. Can you help? So far, 178 readers have left comments on this entry. Fascinating to read: lots of specifics, on warranties, 1-day take-home test drives, tips on how to deal with MSM’s approach to the GM death spiral story, etc.