Guizhou Tyre: Dedicated to Making Transportation on Wheels Safer

11 October 2018 | Source from China Rubber Journal

◎ Yang Honghui

As the thundering military vehicles drive past the Military Parade Square of Tian’anmen, attentive insiders will find that most of them are equipped with “Qianjin” tires. “Military products account for a large proportion in the products of Guizhou Tyre, and more than 80% of the tires in several military parades were provided by Guizhou Tyre.” As soon as the reporter saw Wang Hai, the chief engineer of Guizhou Tyre Co., Ltd., he proudly introduced one of the highlights of products produced by Guizhou Tyre to the reporter.

 

“Due to its remote location and poor talent attraction environment, the previous marketing environment of Guizhou Tyre is not superior in any respect. How can we have our own features in the market? We put forward the tenet of ‘military quality, national brand’ and established the company's concept: to make the transportation on the wheels safer. The above two items constitute the break-through direction of Guizhou Tyre with respect to quality. In recent years, we have adhered to the path of product differentiation for this breakthrough, and now we have achieved initial results in several large series of products.” Wang Hai said.

 

Product Differentiation: An Important Way to Build a Brand

Wang Hai said, the idea of creating a brand for Guizhou Tyre was very clear: Firstly, aim at the world class level for product upgrading and updating; secondly, make customers and the market experience the high cost performance of Qianjin tires; thirdly, promote the channel for brand communication. He introduced several featured and differentiated products of Guizhou Tyre to the reporter.

Firstly, high-end all-steel tubeless serial products.

Launched in 2015, this series of products have had a very good reputation in the market at present after continuous improvement and market test for 2-3 years, with a driving distance of over 300,000 km and even 500,000 km.” This result has exceeded our own expectations of products, and also beyond the expectations of customers, reaching the service life of world-class brands, and fulfilling our original intention to make world-class products and build well-known brands.”Wang Hai said.

The reporter learned that a recent post was popular in the circle that a technical team of an international first-class brand was testing all the technical parameters of this product of Guizhou Tyre on site, indicating that this product was not only recognized by customers, but also attracted the attention of international brands.

“Now this product of us has pricing power in the market, and the selling price has become a price benchmark for domestic products, which is close to the price of the international first-class brands. High quality and good price are well reflected in this product, which was unimaginable before! It also proves that good products can bring higher cost performance to customers and gain market recognition. Therefore, we are now committed to making high-end tubeless products into the best products of the company.

Secondly, all-steel wide truck tire products.

This is specially designed for the unique Chinese wide-body dumpers. This model is a product in the narrow gap of the Chinese automobile industry, which is enlarged and widened on the basis of commercial vehicles, with a load capacity of nearly 100 tons and very high requirements on tire performance.

The highlight of this product is that it is a non-stand-ard product with high-level structure, whose specification is 14.00R25. The difficulty lies in that because of being a non-standard new product, all tooling and design, including design verification, have no ready-made standards, and production process, equipment, R&D design and product verification are initiative.

After many years of trial improvement, this product has become the first choice for supporting tires, such as SDLG, TONLY and CNHTC. “The advantage of our product is that such tires can only be used for 3 to 4 months in the general market, while our product can be used for 8 to 9 months, which brings super value to customers and is highly recognized by the market. Under the circumstance of market depression, this product is in short supply.”

Thirdly, serial port mechanical tire products.

“Ten years ago, port mechanical equipment was basically imported. We entered this field 10 years ago. At that time, we cooperated with ZPMC for project research and development. Nowadays, Qianjin tires have become the exclusive supporting products of ZPMC gantry crane products. With this project as the emphasis, we improved the performance of the heavy lifting tires, further adapted to the market demand and increased the supporting quantity. At present, our market share of tires (gantry crane + heavy crane) in domestic ports accounts for about 50%. So far, in domestic port mechanical equipment, foreign matching tire ratio has been greatly reduced. We also support the Sweden Kalmar and Sany Heavy Industry. In the third-phase project of Shanghai Yangshan Port, 90% of the tires are supplied by Guizhou Tyre.” Wang Hai introduced.

Fourthly, large agricultural radial tire products.

In recent years, in order to meet the need of national efforts to vigorously promote green and environmental protection in agricultural industry, Guizhou Tyre has increased efforts to develop agricultural radial tires, especially the matching tires for high-horsepower tractors. In 2015, Guizhou Tyre began to research and develop agricultural radial tires for John Deere's high-horsepower (210 horsepower) tractor. After several years of trial, it has been confirmed by users. In August, the product site promotion conference will be held in Heilongjiang Friendship Farm.” Previously, such tires were imported and very expensive and domestic ones have not been involved in this field. Our slogan for this promotion is: creating agricultural radial tires that are affordable for the Chinese people to facilitate the modernization of agricultural machinery in China.” Wang Hai said, now our customers say our tires are good and the quality is not inferior to foreign brands. Through this promotion, we also upgrade and update our agricultural radial tire products.

 

The Combination of Research and Development with Market: Making Our Products More Down-to-earth 

In recent years, Guizhou Tyre has reformed R&D process of the company, and divided the technical R&D team into three parts: one for market research, one for R&D and production, and another for quality monitoring.

Hu Xiangqi, the deputy head of the Quality Department of Guizhou Tyre Co., Ltd. as well as the chief engineer of the Truck Radial Tire Branch, told the reporter that in the past, R&D teams were sitting in offices, designing products and handing over drawings for trial production. The company only sells what it has. But now, the requirement for R&D teams of Guizhou Tyre is “outside the market, inside the site”.

A R&D team researches the market. Make the R&D personnel have more time to “stay” in the market, know what the market needs, what the customer is thinking, what the product you provide to him is like, and “capture” the customer needs from the perspective of the engineer, and then refine the customer requirements into the design concept of the product. Hu Xiangqi said, in the past, the market demand was mostly conveyed by the sales personnel, who generally saw which products were sold well, while the R&D personnel paid attention to the product performance, advantages and what customers paid attention to. At present, at least a third of the time of the engineers in the R&D team is spent on the market. “After having worked for five years, it should be said that the effect is very good. The R&D team's view of the product is much better than before, and they know whether the product is made to the customer's liking or not, and know which aspects may exceed the customer's needs.

A technical team is responsible for design and production. After receiving the feedback from the market, the technical team is responsible for the internal implementation of more products. After designing the products, they need to make them more energy efficient and environmentally friendly in the production process.

A team is responsible for quality monitoring. Hu Xiangqi introduced that in the past, the process and quality teams in Guizhou Tyre were all together without a clear quality management team. Now, the company sets an independent quality management team with a more detailed division of quality management, control the product quality according to various systems, standards and other requirements, and turn the information received from the market into the control requirements in the manufacturing process. Meanwhile, quality tracking and quality control are carried out in the whole process from raw material incoming inspection, warehousing and feeding to the entire process of production, product inspection, market feedback after delivery to customers, etc.

 

Internet Service: Innovative Marketing Ecological Benefit Chain

“With the new ecological innovative marketing of the Internet, we can achieve connectivity among manufacturers, channels and end users. It includes our big data, service improvement and user experience, and integrates our related market resources into the online service platform for the improvement of service and experience.” Zhang Hao, the head of the Marketing Department in Guizhou Tyre, introduced their innovative Internet marketing and services to the reporter.

“The B and C ends are included in the three front ends: retail APP, e-auto service APP and service official account of Guizhou Tyre. There is also a backstage management system, mainly the PC side, which is the management platform used by factories and first-level agents. This creates connectivity between the three aspects.” Zhang Hao introduced that many provincial agents and retail stores had concerns about the impact on their businesses in the future at that time, but we built this platform to better serve distributors.

For example, the service official account of Guizhou Tyre has service, product, person and other services. It includes national joint insurance, e-auto service, complaints and suggestions, store query, information query, product recommendation, tire purchase, anti-fake query, point mall, questionnaire, etc. The online platform is considered as the tool of Internet to reflect marketing innovation, which includes both to B and to C, but actually pays more attention to service experience and improvement.

Channel innovation improves services but doesn't up-end the traditional marketing business models, Zhang Hao said. “We only provide services online, such as sales points and product recommendations, and one important feature is anti-fake query. Now consumers pay more attention to safety, because the counterfeit of famous brand product is more common in Chinese market, it is also important to identify the authenticity of products. Through our anti-false query, if you input the tire number, you can get the true and false situation of the product. After buying a tire through this platform, consumers can immediately check the authenticity of the product on this platform. This platform makes full use of informatization, big data and cloud services. Its function is not just simple point accumulation, but product verification and experience, which improves the experience of users.”

“We will launch the e-auto service later. For example, I have a service demand here. When I click on the e-auto service to send the service demand, the service outlets around will receive information, and online links can be used to improve service convenience and efficiency. In addition, you can also query surrounding service outlets, rescue outlets, installation services, etc., and integrate the entire service system resources into the Internet to achieve efficient service experience for users. For example, open the platform to search stores, find Qianjin and Dalishi stores, and then navigate to buy tires.” Zhang Hao said, previously, some of our agents were not highly motivated and achieved low efficiency in terms of door head adver-tising and image store production, however, the tasks of the whole year had been completed by the end of May this year, which has well supported the sales of dealers. 

“The first reason for this good effect is that the official account is a value-added service, which can be found in the terminal shop and is more convenient for dealers to promote tires. Secondly, the improvement of the quality of our products has been recognized by customers, and hanging our store label is also a symbol of the dealer brand.” Zhang Hao said.

According to Zhang Hao, the Internet service platform of Guizhou Tyre is relatively large in the domestic TBR product and service market, with more than 100 first-level agent channels and more than 7,000 small agent channels and retail stores. Basically, the core B end has been entered, and the amount of attention of end users has exceeded 10,000 people. Currently, the online TBR sales account for nearly 20% of the total sales in the replacement market each month, and the incremental sales and brand value added effect are more significant.
“Now the market is inseparable from this platform. We used to do the paper product promotion, and we didn't know it was given to whom. When the salesman went to the agent for training, the efficiency was very low. Now the precision communication has very efficiency. While a product is launched, the B end and the C end all know, and they will order this product.” Zhang Hao told the reporter that during the green tire safety week organized by China Rubber Industry Association this year, Guizhou Tyre used this platform for the publicity of tire knowledge, and tire label products were promoted in the safety week of last year.

Zhang Hao finally stressed that Guizhou Tyre is using the Internet as a tool, not simply developing online e-commerce, or changing the fate of traditional agents, but to let them live better.“The situation of simply opening online e-commerce is very limited and will be resisted by traditional dealers. What we have created is a new chain of marketing ecological interest chain that reflects the influence of the brand in the most efficient way.” This platform is a new ecology of the supply chain. Customers can make requests through the platform and conduct market research. The platform integrates internal and external resources of the company and greatly improves the management efficiency and level.  

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