The TESLA Tango: Powerwall Dancin’

OZ Tesla Install of Powerwall

Getting a product to market with absolute top quality and game changing features to grow or create new revenue is hard. Those of you in the Development and Test game know the G2M “Go to Market” pains all too well.

It’s a Marketing Jungle out there trying to get your message to resonate and shine in order to schlep new or improved services and product into the market and make a living, and a difference…

Then along comes Elon Musk not once, or twice, or three times, but four times… with Paypal, Tesla Cars, Solar City and now Tesla Batteries or more precisely , Powerwall. (Hyperloop is a side show at the moment so we wont go there.. Sorry Rob Lloyd)

Elon Musk Tesla on stage Powerwall

The verdict is still out on Powerwall (as it is on SpaceX), as we get tantalizingly close to the Nevada GigaFactory opening in late 2016 when volume of the Powerwall will start to flow to the masses for home power and EV charging, Tesla’s two pronged attack on the market.

So how does he, Elon Musk (TESLA) really do it?

THE  GAME CHANGING  PROMISE, THE  SNEAK PEAK TEASE AND THE TRIAL…

It sounds like a Mckinsey Consulting title I know.. (Pig an the Python anyone?), but the title is the Tesla way to market in today’s noisy Internet of social media and marketing that is the web.

THE GAME CHANGING PROMISE…

The promise… of cheap home power, lower power bills and a charged up EV fast, when ever you need it is to most with the means really appealing. OK he has set the Middle class hook. (Tesla Cars was the high end hook). We want it, and some of us really bad…

The SNEAK PEAK TEASE…

Australia and the Netherlands get to try Powerwall first and tell us about it in a funny accent? Ah come’on!!! (See Bridesmaids for authentic Australian accent), OK now we really want it!!! Tesla’s Powerwall does look cool, a sort of “Honeycomb of Power” look, which looks good on any garage wall, and might actually fit Today’s downsized town house garage..

TRIAL OR LAB EXPERIMENT…. Alpha, Beta, take your pick.. Powerwall sure looks nice

What on earth are they shipping to Australia and the Netherlands (Holland for the layperson) when the Gigafactory is not even finished you might ask? A Lab experiment in Alpha/Beta Mode with Nice Injection Moulded Plastic and lots of hand holding (local technical support) in favourable customer locales…

HERE COMES THE VOLUME….IN 2017  YOUR NEIGHBOURHOOD BIG BOX STORE

End User big box distribution of the Powerwall via the Home Depots and Auto Parts Stores is where you will find them, that is my guess. One look at the early distribution partner sign up and their past heritage of companies they used to run tells me this is TESLA’s G2M plan, in North America, The EU, OZ, the UK, and elsewhere…

SOCIAL MEDIA BUZZ, BUZZ, BUZZ… TESLA everywhere….WITH A POSITIVE VISION

Multiple front marketing reminds us of pre-Internet phenom marketeer Sir Richard Branson, who with his Virgin label, staked claim, grew, sold and multiplied into multiple markets all the while staying in the Consumer lime light, multiplying banker debt…

Tesla, and specifically Musk understands the power of cross marketing into different segments better than anyone, including the late Steve Jobs, whose market focus was still high tech with Apple (until now we understand Apple wants to build cars…)

The take home here is you can buzz all you like about product details, and advantages and features of your new product and/or service, however in the end the buyer must see themselves in the VISION or picture you have painted for them, and remember they have an attention span of 7 seconds or less. so pictures please…, words are too slow… 🙂

THE G2M EFFORT: PAINT THE VISION, WITH THE PROMISE, TEASE N TRIAL…

THEN YOU BETTER DELIVER….when you say you will.

The verdict is not out on Powerwall and Tesla by a long shot. TESLA has much to do in completing the first phase of their Gigafactory, setting up distribution, and the service that goes with it. The good news is they have learned how to do it in complete control of the G2M, the not so good news is this time they will do it through partners partly, while leveraging their Tesla Car stores, so their will be some market resistance, not everyone will go to a Tesla store to buy a Powerwall. Also find the right licensed Electrician to install the Powerwall, so Tesla will need to help with that connection.

WAIT FOR IT OR BUY NOW?  … PROMISES VS. FUD MISSILES & CURRENT PRODUCT

Now that we all know about the Tesla Powerwall, like it and probably want one, are we willing to wait 12-18 months? Can we even get financing via the banks or local credit union. (Chokin’ down more debt is really hard in this economy, even at these low rates)

And the competition will not stand around idle and let TESLA take their perceived entitlement of market share with out a battle to keep their existing customers. The weapon of choice in this case is always price in the short term to hold on to existing partner relationships, it’s attractive bait to get something we know and trust cheaper, even though it’s not what we really want, (ie we don’t see ourselves in their Marketing Vision or picture..)

COMPETITIVE ALTERNATIVES? HERE AND NOW, MORE TO COME…

The FUD, Fear Uncertainty and Doubt will come from the laggard big companies (Panasonic and Sony are the well known knowns, LG Chemical, BAK and others are not so well known this space..) and the new companies offering cutting edge technology improvements over Tesla Powerwall, and they are out there,  with the latter having a legitimate claim to better technology and even better EV experience, like SAFT (France) from the aviation battery space & Electrovaya(Canada) and their Mercedes Smart Car supply deal via their German acquisition Litarion. So there are choices today, which are technically better, but do we really see ourselves in the vision they have painted for us enough to buy their products? After all it’s Tesla with the consumer pizazz and style we see ourselves standing beside in our garages.

READY TO TANGO? TESLA G2M Spin, Tech Leadership  or Personal Budget Reality?

Each of us has our own criteria for jumping into Energy Storage, and ultimately in today’s tight economy our budgets make the call for most of us, which will mean we save for 2017. Otherwise if budget and bank financing is not your problem,  the challenge is really weighing the G2M Spin of Tesla versus the nextgen Tech Leaders to decide will I go with current technology and good looks, or will I flaunt tech leadership  and tolerate a more geeky tech shop look in my garage?  The choice is ultimately yours.

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