PDA

View Full Version : Do you think BMW corporate is reading this forum?


kocsis
10-09-2010, 07:29 PM
I would think they should. It's great market research even though we are more fanatic than the average buyer. For example, the thread on the problem that hasn't been fixed for 10 days has flushed out a lot of quality concerns, and the multiple threads on the numbness of the steering and other driveability issues shoal raise some concern at BMW management. Or are they too arrogant and/or clueless?

jimefam
10-09-2010, 07:37 PM
No I don't think they do.

Munich77
10-09-2010, 07:54 PM
They absolutely read these forums. I asked friend of mine who works at BMW corporate in Munich about it and he said they do. He worked in product development (poor guy got to work on the product development of the E9x M3).

quackbury
10-09-2010, 08:42 PM
Back when I had an E60, there was a guy named EHANSELL who lurked and occasionally responded to folks. In the early days of the E60, things like the steering position sensor failed a lot - sort of like the HPFP in the 535's. I have not seen him around in a long time, though, so he may have been job eliminated after Purves left BMWNA.

melor
10-09-2010, 08:57 PM
I would bet anything they do read these and other forums. A company like BMW will spend ton's of money on market research. Reading these forums is like listening in on a party line of people talking about their product!

Paul

nosnoop
10-09-2010, 10:07 PM
I would bet anything they do read these and other forums. A company like BMW will spend ton's of money on market research. Reading these forums is like listening in on a party line of people talking about their product!

OTOH, they also know full well that forums such as this one do not represent the general public or the majority of their client base. Sure, there is a group of avid BMW enthusiasts, and reading the posts in these forums would give you the pulses of that group. But all in all, for the success/failure of a particular model, the views here are not very representative.

Needsdecaf
10-10-2010, 12:19 PM
Regardless of how much stock they put in things, how often they log in, or whether they just troll or are registered, they most certainly do monitor these forums.

For example, Volvo Cars North America has many people who monitor Swedespeed, including a couple who post. One is very, very high up in VCNA.

I would bet that most car forums with a certain threshold of traffic are monitored by the manufacturers.

kocsis
10-10-2010, 01:12 PM
Has anyone seen a BMW corporate response to a post? I've seen other manufacturers respond on their "fan" site, but never this one.

ccbbrb
10-10-2010, 02:06 PM
It is surprising to me how many simple basic fundamental questions are asked here, and how few answers dealers have to offer. It would seem that BMW is lacking basic communications from Germany, and from BMW North America, to its dealers, and ultimately to their customers.

kocsis
10-10-2010, 03:10 PM
Folks on this forum may be a bit fanatic, but issues like defects and even dull steering will definitely come up in the minds of all prospective custers who are choosing among for example the 5 Series vs. the Jag vs. The E class. I have lots of friends who drive these types of cars and make these types of choices without participating in these forums.P

kashrahman
10-10-2010, 03:16 PM
They read these forums. Wife had some minor issue with dashboard trim on her E60. Long story short, she posted about it here. Next thing she knew, corporate contacted her directly to take care of it. Kash

dadesidon
10-10-2010, 07:21 PM
I think that there is. There was someone from BMWNA that posted on some of the HPFP conversions on the e60. I also know that dealerships always read these things.

mujjuman
10-10-2010, 07:22 PM
Dealership people definitely do, but I don't think corporate does.


Sent from my iPhone using BimmerApp

pharding
10-10-2010, 08:51 PM
I received a PM from a BMW engineer a number of years ago about my unofficial Bluetooth phone install.

listerone
10-11-2010, 06:48 PM
OTOH, they also know full well that forums such as this one do not represent the general public or the majority of their client base. Sure, there is a group of avid BMW enthusiasts, and reading the posts in these forums would give you the pulses of that group.
I'd be surprsed if they didn't read forums like this particularly the ones populated by North Americans and Europeans (combined,the overwheling majority of their customers).They'd read them not because the posters would represent the "typical" buyer but because *we're* the ones who tell our brothers,uncles,friends and neighbors "hey,my ride is awesome" or "don't bother".

nlk10010
10-12-2010, 08:25 AM
I think they may but I also think that it matters not at all.

Some of us may hope that if BMW monitor this forum then they actually have a chance of getting things fixed that incompetent dealers can't address.

I seriously doubt it.

You may get the occasional BMW engineer/enthusiast who is genuinely interested in what is discussed here but I believe that, if BMW DOES monitor, assisting the customer is the furthest thing from its "mind".

Huncowboy
10-12-2010, 08:38 AM
I think if they do, they are individual employees. They lurk and read as a private person and they would not use this forum in their professional life as a reference.

kocsis
10-12-2010, 11:03 AM
Too bad. I know for a fact that many companies monitor these types of forums and change their strategies to address customer concerns. In fact, there is an article in today's Wall Street Journal on "scraping" chat rooms like ours to get market data - companies pay lots of money to Nielsen and others in order to get market intelligence on customer reaction to their product. Car enthusiasts not only buy cars, but serve as opinion leaders to a large universe of potential buyers.

Needsdecaf
10-12-2010, 12:03 PM
I think they may but I also think that it matters not at all.

Some of us may hope that if BMW monitor this forum then they actually have a chance of getting things fixed that incompetent dealers can't address.

I seriously doubt it.

You may get the occasional BMW engineer/enthusiast who is genuinely interested in what is discussed here but I believe that, if BMW DOES monitor, assisting the customer is the furthest thing from its "mind".

You would be surprised.

I am a member / moderator on a very highly trafficked Volvo website called Swedespeed (part of the Vortex Media Group family). With the advent of the S60 R / V70R that came out in the 2004 MY, there were a rash of chronic issues with the car since the engineering was baked onto a platform that wasn't originally designed for it (i.e. not enough intercooling, embarrasing turning radius due to huge brembos / AWD, etc.) There were a number of dealers and techs on the board, and we were able to get some information as to what they were being told about the repairs to the car.

As time went by, we noticed a number of problems / flaws that the forum members had diagnosed and in some instances solved started appearing as Technical Service Bulletins being issued to the dealer. Usually a coincidence, but some of the information seemed VERY familliar.

Turns out, VCNA was listening on the forum, monitoring the issues, back-checking with service records and issuing TSB's as necessary. This was later confirmed when a VCNA employee (upper echelon) started posting on the board (he still does) and admitted as such. Actually, we opened up a thread called "Ask VCNA" where we all posted questions and he answered as truthfully as he could with regard to issues going forward now that the car was out of production (2007 MY was the last). I have personally spoken with this particular VP off line and he is quite cool, and been very helpful to the community.

Now, of course, this is Volvo who has had troubles and needs as much grass-roots support as they can. BMW is an entirely different beast.

But don't believe they don't read. And don't believe that it might not matter one day...

Emilner
10-12-2010, 12:48 PM
No modern global sales organization would be dumb enough not to monitor these boards. Companies pay millions in opinion based polls and user experience surveys. Here they can get it nearly free. It is one of the best resources for them to get an unmodified view of the subject. They know it is a small sampling of the target market, but it does have relevant value...

dalekressin
10-12-2010, 12:56 PM
It would be foolish for them not to read the word on the forums.
Free advise.

indeed330
10-12-2010, 01:25 PM
I think they may but I also think that it matters not at all.

Some of us may hope that if BMW monitor this forum then they actually have a chance of getting things fixed that incompetent dealers can't address.

I seriously doubt it.

You may get the occasional BMW engineer/enthusiast who is genuinely interested in what is discussed here but I believe that, if BMW DOES monitor, assisting the customer is the furthest thing from its "mind".

Nailed it. They definitely monitor it because it would be stupid not to. Any feedback is good information; what part of the customer base agrees and how to use the feedback is a whole different science.

Monitoring to help customers is not what they are doing however. There's a dedicated channel for the "help" and that channel is well policed by lawyers. So I'm sure the BMW corporate policy strictly prohibits any employees to "help" customers through forums. "Sneak around and fish for information, but do not reply!"

bklyn550
10-15-2010, 09:36 AM
If they are I hope they address what us the real enthusaists bring up.

Especially 6VC Combox

Steering

southernbelle
10-15-2010, 01:44 PM
I just received delivery on my 528 at the Performance Center - a week ago. As a follow up to the experience, I received an email survey. In the survey the question was asked - which BMW forum(s) do you read on a regular basis - and several were listed to include this one. Also I was asked which auto magazines I read regularly. I just assumed (rightly or wrongly) that the forum question was asked for a very good reason - to monitor the threads.