Rally Fighter at Low Ride & High Ride Height

Lessons from Local Motors- Part 1—Find an Underserved Market Space


We are often asked by luxury real estate marketing professionals, “What does it take to become the break-away brand in my marketplace?”  Our answer is:

Find an uncontested, underserved market space that you can dominate with passion, one that makes economic sense. Make sure you select something that you can do better than anyone else. 

For inspiration, look outside of real estate for examples of how other entrepreneurs are doing it.  There is an extremely exciting news story emerging in 2010 about a new American car company that is re-thinking just about every rule in the automotive industry by identifying and masterfully serving underserved market niches.

We are delighted to be covering this story in the Language of Luxury blog as we believe that this ground-breaking story will yield tremendous insights for luxury real estate marketing professionals who have set their sights on market leadership.  If you have any questions about the future of “Yankee Ingenuity”, which is at the heart of the brand we know as American, you can rest assured that it is alive and well at Local Motors!

When Jay Rogers returned from active duty as a Marine in Iraq in 2004, he came home with the brilliant idea of bringing cars to market in a sustainable manner.  That is, a way to produce and sell automobiles that is economically, environmentally and socially beneficial.  In Jay’s words:”the cars people want, where they want them, when they want them”. This is what his new car company, Local Motors, accomplishes.

After receiving an MBA from Harvard Business School and raising $4 million in seed money Jay did something that had never been done before in the car industry. Rather than dictating the design of the vehicles, he reached out to the design community and offered a cash reward for the best design. Local Motor’s first “crowd-sourced” vehicle was born: a rugged off-road vehicle that could also drive comfortably on the open road. 

The Rally Fighter was created based on the needs of an underserved market niche: the need for a vehicle that can easily traverse desert terrain and also double as a family car that comfortably handles the open road.  The winning design provides manually adjustable dual height suspension. It seats 4 adults or 2 adults and 3 children. The Rally Fighter goes into production this summer.  The cost is $50,000.

But, the best part of the story is that Local Motors plans to produce their cars only on demand at local “micro-factories” (that also serve as showrooms and service departments) where you, the buyer can watch and even participate in making your own car.  With “just in time” delivery of parts and components there is no wasted resources, no inventories languishing on car lots, and no unnecessary shipping. 

And, there is much more to this exciting story that we will cover in subsequent posts. But, it all started by identifying an uncontested, underserved market niche.   What aspect of your local luxury real estate marketplace is underserved?  That is the first place to look for your new niche.

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