NIO’s popularity with passers-by has improved

Most Chinese CEOs have a tacit understanding: you can make mistakes, you can say mistakes, but you cannot admit them.

Because doing something wrong and saying something wrong affects authority, but admitting one's mistakes means destroying one's authority. The underlying logic of this tacit understanding is that the operation of an enterprise must be based on the absolute authority of the CEO.

But recently there was a CEO who kept admitting his mistakes and apologized multiple times for the same mistake.

Li Bin, the founder and CEO of Weilai, once had a lot of "violent comments", such as saying in 2021, "I don't understand why people still buy gasoline-powered cars, just to smell the gasoline?" and "Tesla does not exist in China. Pricing power," "Tesla lowers prices because its cars can't be sold," "It doesn't have much technical content to just focus on battery life," and other comments are also unpopular.

So after these "violent comments" were spread and amplified, many passers-by began to express their opinions: It was the first time that they hated a company because of one person.

Just before 2024, Weilai's operating conditions are not very good, with many models and few sales.

But in 2024, NIO's sales and popularity have begun to reverse. Sales are easy to understand. In the past June, NIO delivered 21,209 new cars, a record high. So what's going on with its popularity?

Third-party report: NIO has become the most popular brand among passers-by

Yesterday, Jielan Road, a third-party research organization in the automobile industry, released a research report " Jielan Road New Energy Vehicle Brand Health Research in the First Half of 2024 ", which mainly talks about the car brand building in the Chinese market.

Because many car companies will choose Jielan Road as a research partner, this report has a certain reference value (the survey sample is 6,700 new energy car owners).

The more important dimensions include: brand awareness, favor index among hundreds of people, brand reference and net promoter score.

Among them, brand awareness is easy to understand: how many people know this brand? Among the new car manufacturers, Ideal, Weilai and Xiaomi have formed a new "Wei Xiaoli" combination, while Tesla and BYD have become the most well-known brands, and fuel vehicles The most well-known brand in the field is BMW.

In the "100 People Favor Index", NIO has become the brand with the highest score: 49 out of every 100 people may like this brand.

We can simply call this indicator "passerby popularity". In the second half of last year, the brand with the best passerby popularity was Ideal: 54 out of every 100 people were likely to like this brand.

It can be said that the competition in the automobile industry has been extremely fierce in the past two years, and brands often criticize each other. Therefore, for many brands, improving the popularity of their brands has become a very complicated matter: not only must they rely on products and marketing to build Brand value also needs to prevent competitors from sneak attacks. Of course, there are also internal management requirements. Your own people should not talk nonsense and ruin the popularity of passersby.

Therefore, under this high-pressure situation, it is logical that the overall popularity index of hundreds of people has declined. Especially for fuel vehicle brands, not only are their sales declining, but their brand building has also suffered a huge test. However, most new energy brands have performed well. NIO The popularity of brands such as , Ji Krypton, Wenjie, and Wangwang are getting better. Of course, this conclusion is also greatly affected by the survey sample. The comparative survey subjects are all new energy vehicle owners.

In addition, in terms of the brand's Net Promoter Score (NPS, Net Promoter Score, which refers to the proportion of consumers who would recommend the same product to others), the NPS of Zhijie, AITO Wenjie, Xiaomi, Fangfangbao, and Weilai are all at 80 % or more, ranking among the top five. Here Jie Lanlu also explained: In addition to Weilai, Zhijie, AITO Wenjie (M9, M7), Xiaomi, and Fangbao may all have a "new car effect" (new car effect refers to the early stage of delivery of new models, users' Brands and products exhibit universal characteristics of satisfaction and support).

Broken down into models, the top five NPS of new energy sedans are NIO ET5, Zhijie S7, Xiaomi SU7, NIO ET5t and Avita 12; the top five NPS of new energy SUVs are Wenjie M9, Wenjie M7, Weilai ES6, BYD Song L and Wenjie M5.

In addition to being far ahead in the world of inquiry and wisdom, NIO's main models have also been recognized by car owners.

In addition, this research report also has an interesting indicator, which is the brand confidence index. As we all know, NIO was once the car company closest to bankruptcy in the eyes of passers-by. This brand confidence index is approximately equal to whether others think the brand will be ruined.

The confidence index is divided into 5 levels:

  • Brands with strong confidence (will never die): BYD, JIKE, Porsche and Tesla
  • Brands with strong confidence (almost unlikely to fail): Wenjie, Geely Galaxy, Wangwang, Hongmeng Zhixing, Mercedes-Benz… Xiaomi and NIO are also on the list
  • Brands with strong confidence (probably not going to die): Hongqi New Energy, Denza, Changan Qiyuan, Zhijie, Buick… Ideal, Leapmoon and Ledao are on the list
  • Brands with weak confidence (will be ruined if not careful): Maybe due to face, Jielan Road did not list specific brands
  • Weak confidence brand (probably will be ruined): Same as above, but if it doesn’t appear above, it will definitely appear below.

It should be noted that in the previous survey, NIO once appeared among the brands with weak confidence, and it was a brand that everyone thought would be ruined if not careful. Now everyone is not too worried about NIO going bankrupt. Some kind of To a certain extent, it is also the result of brand building.

A little observation: Why NIO’s popularity among passers-by has improved

In fact, when NIO announced that no new models will be launched this year and only facelifts will be launched, everyone was still worried: after all, the competition is so fierce and iterations are so fast, NIO’s old models will not sell well, and facelifts alone will be very difficult to sell. Difficulty coping with competition.

But the result is that in the first half of this year, especially after the second quarter, NIO's sales and brand have shown a rapid upward trend.

To fight fast, there is no fastest, only faster and slower may be the solution.

For example, in the research report of Jielan Road, the Net Promoter Score option not only has a "new car effect", but may also have an opposite "old car effect", because brands come out with new products faster, and new cars not only increase in volume but also reduce prices. Old car owners feel that Backstab, so the brand and model will no longer be recommended, which will lead to a decrease in the net promoter score.

The steady iteration rhythm is a kind of protection for old car owners, and may also give waiting consumers a sense of security.

Of course, Weilai Road's popularity has improved because of the key actions of a key figure. Since last year, NIO founder and CEO Li Bin has started live broadcasting. Compared with scenes in closed media interviews that can easily be taken out of context, live broadcasting is a position where Li Bin is easier to understand.

For example, during the live broadcast, Li Bin responded to the audience's comment that they "hate a brand because of one person":

It's okay if you hate me. The car was built by so many brothers who worked hard and invested so much effort in research and development. Please don't hate our products, let alone pure electric products.

Then he explained and apologized many times for "buying a gas car just to smell the gas":

It was an internal communication event for car owners, so everyone chatted more openly. I still had to apologize for my words and deeds. I had no intention of harming car owners of any model.

As mentioned at the beginning, most Chinese CEOs would rather say or do something wrong than admit it. Netizens are both strict and tolerant. A high-minded attitude will not win a group of followers. Being humble and sincere can win understanding. However, the truth is simple but difficult to do. CEOs not only want face, but also authority. These two points make it more difficult for them to admit their mistakes and apologize.

Just recently, I participated in two NIO events and began to understand Li Bin’s transformation and the improvement in NIO’s popularity.

The previous one was a media group interview after Weilai released its second brand Letao. During the entire interview, the atmosphere was lively, and the answers given by interviewees such as Li Bin were very informative, without too much Tai Chi rhetoric.

Generally speaking, most of the media group interview activities are well known to everyone. You ask some friendly questions, and I answer some official words. At the end of an hour, a small number of media will get the opportunity to have lunch or dinner, and there will be three or two glasses on the table. After eating, you can talk about things that cannot be said or written.

However, in this interview, questions were asked freely and answers were specific.

▲ Li Bin took a group photo with the staff and car owners at the car club.

The other time was the NIO Greater Bay Area Car Club that I attended as a media member a few days ago. The car club event with more than a thousand people is a nightmare for every organizer because it involves invitations, screening, parking, and sign-in. , dinners, performances, draws, etc. are cumbersome and specific processes.

This event was one of the most well-organized events I have ever participated in with thousands of people. Even with a lot of processes and a large number of people, the order and experience were still quite good. However, for Weilai car owners and Weilai fans, Li Bin was more like a model worker and a model at this event. He stayed in the photo area for two or three hours, always keeping in shape and taking photos with the car owners.

At the dinner, Li Bin and other senior executives also had to toast to more than 100 guests with wine glasses. Although they were all ceremonial behaviors without much practical significance, etiquette is indeed an important reason for influencing the popularity of passers-by. .

On this occasion, as a non-car owner, I was the passerby watching.

It is said that you can tell the whole story by looking at something. Sincerity and professionalism in some details, as well as not being tired of tediousness, are the basis for bringing good feelings and are bonus points in addition to the product.

Of course, "passerby popularity", which is not so easy to quantify, is only a small part of the complexity of a company and a brand, or it is a side result, but it is also a mirror that can reflect a lot.

In the plastic greenhouse of fate, every cabbage that has been sprayed with too many pesticides once had a dream of becoming a pollution-free organic vegetable.

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