Blog: Dave LeggettSsangYong UK

Dave Leggett | 14 March 2008

I went out for lunch with Paul Williams, boss of SsangYong distributors Koelliker UK today. It was a wide ranging conversation over some decent Italian food. As soon as I get time something detailed will be written up on just-auto. One thing he said stuck. The focus now is to niche market the brand and products on what is fertile ground. As Williams put it: concentrate on the 1% where you have a chance and essentially leave the other 99% alone. Why spend time pitching SsangYong SUVs to sceptical Guardian readers when there is a more natural constituency to go for (Williams recently spent time at a Caravan show)?

It's an interesting thought - how far do you try and extend brand appeal, at the risk of wasting your marketing budget, or is it wiser to go where you know there are potential customers and slog it out with your competitors there? Also, family owned and Milan-based distributor Koelliker is perhaps an interesting study in itself; Williams maintains that the nature of the firm means that it is prepared to take a long view. 

One other thing that stuck: the term 'Royston Vasey Motors'. Hadn't heard that one before.   

Below is a raw foray into the world of 'rich media' with something I did outside the restaurant where we had lunch. I know it's a little bit rough at the edges (look, I had to be director, cameraman and reporter all rolled into one - not as easy as it sounds), but it gives a kind of flavour.

 

UK: SsangYong extends warranty in Ulster


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