Finalized Business Model By Clayson Richmond
TABLE OF CONTENTS Executive Summary 3
Company Description 4
Industry Analysis and Trends 5
The Competition 7
Marketing Plan and Sales Strategy 8
Operations and Management 9
EXECUTIVE SUMMARY The automotive blog “The Car Counsel” is an culmination of a passion for anything automotive, strong literature, and a dedication to journalistic integrity. As The Car Counsel starts out, there will be only weekly blog updates, with a monthly digital publication on the iBook and Kindle online stores. Many readers will be drawn to the company’s small size, because it will be more personal for the readers. Brainstorming for diﬀerent types of articles and blog posts has started a while ago, as we already have sample posts and articles ready to test on the market. This could be done through many diﬀerent kinds of social media outlets and online polls. The Car Counsel would fall under the digital publication market, and as with all businesses, the biggest goal would be to make the most revenue while spending the least amount of money. The best way to do that is to find companies that would be willing to pay for advertisement space on the blog and on the digital publications. The Car Counsel’s biggest competitors are companies like The German Car Blog and Autoblog, and not companies like Car & Driver or Motortrend. These are far too large of companies for The Car Counsel to compete with. The Car Counsel’s target audience actually greatly varies. One of the largest audiences are males in between the ages of 18 and 25, and another group of males from 45 to 65. These are only people that love cars, and that love to read about them and get the latest news and updates on their favorite brands. Most of the branding will be on social media, through Facebook posts and Tweets. The updates will consist of teasers for readers to read the posts, as well as a medium for the audience with The Car Counsel on their opinions and what viewers think of the blog posts. The Car Counsel will operate out of Clayson Richmond’s home as of now, and into the foreseeable future. Until The Car Counsel grows larger and demands more frequent updates, we will not need to hire on any additional staﬀ members. Therefor, no real oﬃces will be necessary.
COMPANY DESCRIPTION Clayson’s own opinions and tone of writing are an integral part of The Car Counsel, as it is part of what makes it unique. Through all of this will be a clear cut informational blog that will spread automotive knowledge and how-to’s.
MISSION The Car Counsel will not only seek to inform readers about everything automotive, but also entertain them. The Car Counsel will provide car reviews, test drives, first looks, how-to’s, and model overviews. The Car Counsel will have a weekly blog post, as well as a monthly digital publication. It will be free to sign up to the blog, and a small fee for the monthly digital publication. As of yet, Clayson has written about twenty blog posts in order to get a collection of work started, and also a design layout for the digital publication.
SERVICES The Car Counsel will provide comprehensive and in depth research and reviews of all articles the publication it puts out. These include car care tips, how-to’s, model overviews, vehicle spotlights, and anything that is big in the news that week. These are among the biggest things that viewers like reading about, and are the things that are most relevant to them. Vehicle spotlights and news pieces will most likely be the two largest parts of the publication, as these are the things people are most interested in.
DEVELOPMENT TO DATE A logo for The Car Counsel had been created, as well as the slogan “An Auto Enthusiast’s Blog”. Roughly twenty blog posts and one digital publication has been created to show to potential readers to see what they would like to read more of, and how the design layout will be received. A mockup blog has also been created on Wordpress.
LEGAL STATUS AND OWNERSHIP The Car Counsel hasnâ€™t been registered under trademark protection but it will soon be. Once we receive our first set of results from the polls determining what customers would like to read, how they would like to read it, and how often, we will start the application process of getting The Car Counsel trademarked and protected. This brand is owned by Clayson Richmond in Winter Park, FL.
INDUSTRY ANALYSIS & TRENDS The automotive journalism industry is actually seeing one of the largest viewership booms in quite some time. Many believe that most people do not care about cars, and that may be true for the majority, but as more car companies are producing better quality cars, more people are starting to care about the industry. We could potentially reach each and every person that owns a vehicle. Because The Car Counsel will try to cover all auto related topics, I am keeping my possibilities open.
INDUSTRY OVERVIEW The Car Counsel will provide car care tips, how-to’s, model overviews, vehicle spotlights, and anything that is big in the news that week. These are among the biggest things that viewers like reading about, and are the things that are most relevant to them.
The Car Counsel would fall under the digital publication market, and as all business I believe the biggest goal would be to make the most revenue while spending the least amount of money. The best way to do that is to find companies that would be willing to pay for advertisement space on the blog and on the digital publications. BARRIERS TO ENTRY The largest barriers to entry would be the competition. It will be diﬃcult to sway readers from their “tried and true” publications to a relatively unheard of publication. In order to do this, we would need to mass advertise on social media, as well as build a website that is built smartly for SEO.
LONG-TERM OPPORTUNITIES Once The Car Counsel has a sustainable amount of viewers, we would consider partnering with other publications, such as The German Car Blog. If we were to partner with them for example, they would take care of the entire german car portion of the blog, freeing The Car Counsel writers for everything else.
TARGET MARKET Ideally The Car Counsel could target anyone with a drivers license, as they could benefit from my publication. Realistically however, the publication will be targeting men in between the ages of 18-25 and 55 and older. Geographically, there are no areas that I could disregard, interests may change depending on region climates, though.
MARKET DESCRIPTION Of the 9.8 million subscribers to Car & Driver, approximately 8.8 million were men, 3 million were 35-49, 5.2 million were married, and 6.8 million had a household income of over $50K. The market is fully prepared for The Car Counsel; this industry has been around for over 50 years. People will gravitate towards the small size and authenticity of The Car Counsel.
MARKET SIZE AND TRENDS The automotive industry is one of the largest in the world, and one of the largest journalistic field is the automotive industry. Car & Driver alone has nearly 10 million subscribers.
TARGET CUSTOMERS The Car Counsel will be targeting men in between the ages of 18-25 and 55 and older. Geographically, there are no areas that the publication could disregard, interests may change depending on region climates, though.
MARKET READINESS As mentioned earlier, the automotive journalism industry is one of the largest, and has quite a few publications already on the market. New publications are continually coming and going, so the market is fully prepared for The Car Counsel.
THE COMPETITION The Car Counsel’s biggest competitors are companies like The German Car Blog and Autoblog, and not companies like Car & Driver or Motortrend. These are far too large of companies for The Car Counsel to compete with.
COMPETITORS Car & Driver and Motortrend are the heavyweights in the industry, they have been around the longest, and provide an annual competition that the entire automotive industry looks at for advertising and product enhancement purposes. For Motortrend it is the “Car of the Year” or “Truck of the Year” and for Car & Driver it is the “10 Best” competition. These publications are far too large for The Car Counsel to compete with for the time being.
STRATEGIC OPPORTUNITIES Again, people will gravitate towards The Car Counsel because of the size and authenticity. The Car Counsel’s biggest problem will be the sheer size of the industry and competition. After time and growth The Car Counsel will be able to partner with some smaller publications like Autoblog.
ADVANTAGES One of the biggest advantages going for The Car Counsel is the writing style Clayson has. It is witty and cunning, yet straightforward. He is able to explain the way something works, or a feature of a vehicle without using technical jargon or big words. Not only this, but his passion for cars shines through his writing. It’s evident that cars are his passion.
BARRIERS TO ENTRY The largest barriers to entry would be the competition. It will be diﬃcult to sway readers from their “tried and true” publications to a relatively unheard of publication. In order to do this, we would need to mass advertise on social media, as well as build a website that is built smartly for SEO.
MARKETING PLAN & SALES STRATEGY MARKETING MESSAGE I believe the current slogan for The Car Counsel, “An Auto Enthusiast’s Blog” is simple and straightforward. It tells readers what the blog is about, and who it is by. It shows that the writers and creator of the blog is a true enthusiast, and will provide nothing but accurate information.
COSTUMER NEEDS The automotive journalism industry has become overly saturated with a lot of small publications that do not suﬃciently back up their articles, and by larger publications that really do not have consumer’s needs at the center of their publications. Consumers need a publication that will do both, as well as help them to keep their cars looking and running like new.
MARKETING PLAN The Car Counsel will advertise solely on social media when it launches. This is because social media advertisements give the biggest ROI’s. For what you pay for the advertisement, you are getting the biggest return. The Car Counsel will post on Facebook and Twitter during the week to remind the audience to check out the blog posts, as well as anything else big that is happening in the industry that readers should know about. Once The Car Counsel grows larger, I could foresee advertisements online, as well as in iPhone or Android apps.
OPERATIONS & MANAGEMENT OPERATIONS As The Car Counsel will not need any other employees besides Clayson Richmond in the near future, management styles or positions do not need to be considered at this point. Because Clayson will be the only employee at this point, he will be in charge of everything: photography, videography, writer, editor, researcher, and publisher. The only advisors that will be necessary are successful bloggers with a strong following. Clayson has chosen these individuals because they compliment my own strengths and weaknesses: he have the knowledge and passion for cars, but do not how to build a following online; they do.
TECHNOLOGY During the entire time The Car Counsel is operational, the technologies used will not be changing. The only technology used for The Car Counsel will be the internet and a web hosting provider, a MacBook, Adobe InDesign, the Apple iBook and Amazon Kindle stores, and whatever automobile The Car Counsel is talking about.
MANAGEMENT Clayson Richmond is the creator and owner of The Car Counsel. Because The Car Counsel will be operating on such a small scale once it starts publishing, Clayson Richmond will be the only necessary employee at that point. Because there is only one blog post per week, there will be enough time to research the post, write it, edit it, publish it, advertise it, and design a digital publication. As The Car Counsel expands, other staďŹ€ member will need to be hired on for additional support. Clayson Richmond will however maintain ownership and management of The Car Counsel.
KEY EMPLOYEES -Owner, Editor, Writer, Graphic Designer, Photographer, Social Media Manager Clayson Richmond
KEY ADVISORS Other successful bloggers - I would be contacting them and maintaining a relationship with them to learn how to build and maintain a blog following. I know the content I want to write about and how to write it, yet do not know when to post it or how to get the word out.
Total Expenses Infrastructure
Adobe Creative Cloud
Company Founding Paperwork
APPENDIX https://creative.adobe.com/plans www.caranddrivermediakit.com/r5/showkiosk.asp?listing_id=4167974 http://www.legalzoom.com http://www.nikon.com http://en-us.sennheiser.com
The business model The Car Counsel will be following once it is incorporated.