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Helicopter: After-sales & Pricing

Helicopter: After-sales & Pricing

We can all agree that helicopters represent an intriguing mode of transportation, which often leave passengers either petrified or excited. There are marked differences between a helicopter and an airplane. The former is regarded as a variant of a rotorcraft. Take, for example, rotors ensure that helicopters can do what airplanes cannot do: engage in vertical take-off and landing, as well as forward, backward, and lateral flight.

 

The concept of vertical flight has been in existence since 400BC when bamboo sticks were used to imitate modern-day helicopters. In the 15th century, Leonardo Da Vinci built a machine with the use of paper, which was believed to be able to engage in vertical flight. Focke-Wulf FW 61 – which represents the first operational helicopter – was built in 1936.

 

However, in recent times, helicopters have become more popular and can serve a wide range of functions. Helicopters are useful during war to assist during emergencies. They can also help firefighters to tackle forest fires. These special helicopters are well-built to fight fires in the forest. They are fitted with helibuckets that can hold a large quantity of water, which can be used to stop fires before they spread further. This great variety of applications makes it important to look into their after-sales and pricing and this is exactly what this guide will look into.

After-sales services and Pricing: Meaning and Relevance

After-sales services, also known as after-sales support, refer to any service that is offered to customers after they purchase any product. After-sales services can be offered by a manufacturer, retailer, or third-party customer service. These services can also be regarded as a company’s marketing strategy. After all, many customers often choose a company’s products due to the after-sales services they are exposed to.

 

It is worth noting that customers’ needs must be met before they can spread positive word of mouth about a product or service. With this in mind, having a positive review of a company’s products can play a crucial role in promoting the brand. This is exactly what after-sales help in achieving. This support ensures that the expectations of customers are not only met but surpassed.

 

After-sales services include any form of activity that can enable businesses to find out if customers are satisfied with their products or not. Besides, after-sales support represents an essential component of sales management, which must not be ignored.

 

On the other hand, pricing is the act of establishing a value for a product or service. In other words, it refers to the amount of money that is charged for a commodity. Companies set up prices that customers must pay in order to acquire their products or services. Pricing decisions can have lasting consequences for an organization.

 

It represents one of the very first considerations customers do not ignore and the profit margin on products depends on it. The decision-making aspect of an organization – for products manufactured depends on pricing. Furthermore, the future of products, as well as their availability and profitability, is determined by the price. Pricing is also a tool that encourages competition.

 

Oftentimes, the prices of commodities are set based on the level of demand for the products. The price level increases as the demand for the product rises, especially when supply runs short. In this case, price variation is primarily determined by demand. Other times, pricing can consider the cost of producing certain commodities before prices are set.

 

Furthermore, pricing may be based on the value that a seller’s competition sets on their products. The price of a competitive seller’s product can serve as a framework for establishing a price. It is possible for the seller to match the competitor’s price, undercut them, or charge more for their products by improving the quality of their commodities or services.

What is the importance of after-sales in the helicopter industry?

In recent times, the helicopter industry has increased dramatically. In 2020, the global helicopter market size was $50.42 billion and is projected to grow to $69.20 billion in 2028. A major contributor to this growth is the idea of after-sales. The importance of the various processes that are focused on satisfying customers with quality helicopters are highlighted as follows:

Good recommendation

The impact of recommendation, based on the word of mouth, on sales cannot be understated. A good after-sales support can make a significant difference. It should be stressed that this is an age of social media and poor after-sales services can result in negative feedback, which can produce damaging effects in terms of a firm’s reputation. It is no strange fact that a happy and satisfied customer will bring spread the good word and bring in more customers, as well as revenues, for the organization. As a result, people are encouraged to buy and the helicopter industry has benefited from this.

Loyalty and Trust are generated

This is one of the core purposes of after-sales support in the helicopter industry. It encourages customers’ satisfaction while also boosting customer retention. The loyalty and trust that this promotes increase the value of the brand. The provision of technical support also assures the customers of being exposed to top-quality products and services, which improves relationships between a company and its customers. As more businesses grow, the helicopter industry expands as well.

 

Besides these, after-sales services might provide a chance to sell more related products. For businesses in the helicopter industry, this is a strategy that must not be ignored. After all, after-sales support is intensive for helicopters and it is a common practice in the industry. In 2015, Russian Helicopters provided after-sales services to helicopter operators in Egypt to ensure that sufficient technical support for repairs is provided for Mi-8T and Mi-17-1V helicopters that are operated by the Egyptian Air Force.

 

Furthermore, after-sales services hold more importance than the products. For many, when products fail to convince, adequate services – or support – can suffice. Indeed, several companies are experiencing the upsides of after-sales services in the significant boost in the volume of sales, as well as the improved strength of the relationship between brands and customers.

Top Companies Evolving in This Area

The growth of the helicopter industry has already been established. The leading helicopter manufacturers include Airbus Helicopters SAS, Leonardo S.p.A., Agusta Westland S.p.A., Bell Textron Inc., Robinson Helicopter Company, Boeing Rotorcraft Systems, and MD Helicopters, Inc. There are several models of helicopters that are available, with features tailored to meet different needs.

 

These aforementioned companies understand the importance of after-sales and with them, customers are often exposed to support and asset management solutions that ensure that they can focus on their business while the efficiency of their operation is boosted. There is a wide range of services that are typical of these top companies, including repair programs that are charged by the hour, logistics solutions, and components and systems modernization.

 

These companies have branches across the far reaches of the globe. Customers can benefit from optimized processes, a responsive spare parts supply flow, and experts with great knowledge of every product. These companies have their services available worldwide and at any instance, in order to handle crucial requests in critical situations. Their after-sales network can guarantee customers a supply of spare parts in the shortest time possible.

 

All after-sales services are offered to serve some main purposes: improve loyalty and trust while generating positive reviews. However, top helicopter manufacturing companies are often faced with formidable challenges, including lack of contract offerings and perception issues towards the safety of helicopters. Companies are now implementing various measures to tackle these issues.

How to Buy a Helicopter: what to consider

Several benefits are associated with owning a helicopter. These include getting to work in time when living in a distant location. The freedom that comes with owning a helicopter is another advantage that is worth mentioning. However, there are various requirements that must be considered before purchasing a helicopter:

Will You Be the Pilot or the Passenger?

Most helicopter owners can fly themselves since they are pilots. People who own a helicopter and can fly themselves often prefer a less-bulky design that can serve private functions. On the other hand, professional pilots prefer bigger helicopters while owners sit at the back. Big figures adopt this as a safe, executive, and reliable means of transportation. Midrange helicopters are characterized by administrative abilities but are exciting to handle.

 

Bigger aircraft require a more experienced pilot. Robinson chopper models, as well as B3 and B4 Eurocopter Ecureuil, AgustaWestland Koala, and Bell 40 can be flown by a well-trained amateur. For bigger models, including AgustaWestland A109 which is built with more sophisticated instrumentation, there is a need for a professional pilot.

 

For owners that are planning on becoming a pilot, choosing a flying school can be a wise choice. There are various flying schools that issue Private Pilot Licenses. Reading reviews can help in discovering a good flying school, which can be characterized by a 45-hour training that spans 12 months. The costs of training range from one school to another.

Consider Your Budget

This is another important requirement that cannot be neglected. Helicopter pricing depends on many factors, including capacity, design, and manufacturer. Setting a budget will narrow the search for the right helicopter.

 

There is a wide range of options and first-time buyers are often advised to go for a two-seater single-piston Robinson R22 or an eight-seater, twin-turbine AgustaWestland Grand. Choices depend on the flexibility of the budget.

 

Even though helicopters are generally costly, many of them are cheaper than Ferrari. For instance, the Robinson R44, which is one of the most famous helicopters worldwide, is valued at only $350,000 and this could be slashed into half for second-hand.

 

When setting a budget for helicopters, buyers are often advised to consider the cost of maintenance too. Several helicopters are more expensive to maintain than others. Indeed, the cost of maintaining lower-priced helicopters can be more than the helicopter’s price over the long run.

 

In terms of space and sophistication, the AgustaWestland A109 and the AgustaWestland Grand are great options. However, an annual depreciation that ranges from five to ten percent might force the buyer to weigh their options. It is important to consider the cost of capital investment, depreciation, and insurance.

The Travel Distance

Top manufacturers of aircraft often provide similar models with slight changes or enhancements in their performance and design. Some of the considerations that determine this tweak in design are fuel capacity, the number of people it can hold, and the distance it can travel.

 

For this reason, it is important to deice on how many people a helicopter must carry regularly before setting out to purchase it. Besides this, it is equally crucial to check the distance the preferred helicopter can travel before there is a need to refuel. For H125 is a midrange helicopter that can guarantee 300 miles to 350 miles before refueling.

Other Considerations

The Airbus H160 is characterized by a new design that is tailored for private and business customers. The H125 faces serious competition from the Bell 407. There is a space for separation between the cockpit and cabin. Besides, the H125 has two seats that face each other, providing a good option for a buyer that has a pilot.

 

On the other hand, an Airbus is better if the buyer is a pilot since there is no space for separation between passengers and pilot. Besides, the purpose of the helicopter should be reflected in the choice of interior. While some people neglect carpet since it is much harder to clean, others prefer leader seats since it is an attractive option, which is currently in vogue.

Conclusion

Mankind has long desired to fly in the sky over the past millennia. This dream has been made possible by the world’s first practical helicopter, VS-300, which was invented in 1939. Indeed, the thrills and excitement of flying cannot be understated and several companies are constantly improving their designs to meet various needs. The desire to satisfy customers is reflected by after-sales services and the different pricing techniques that are adopted.

Helicopter: After-sales & Pricing

Related reading Product Life Cycle Series

https://www.theconsultants.eu/pricing-strategy-across-a-product-life-cycle/

https://www.theconsultants.eu/how-to-forecast-sales-across-your-product-life-cycle/

https://www.theconsultants.eu/value-proposition-across-your-product-life-cycle/

https://www.theconsultants.eu/strategic-initiatives-to-generate-more-value-across-your-product-life-cycle/

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