Conversation Agent - Valeria Maltoni - Tribal Marketing: Ducati

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Oh yeah... I LOVE my Duc! 2006 Ducati Monster. Red. It's worthy of the racetrack and MOMA.

I don't have much fondness for the maintenance bills, though.

The 90 degree V-Twin is a classic design; it's a lot smoother than the 42 to 54 degrees of many other V-twins. There's a misconception that the desmodromic valve system is unique. It's a rarely used system, but it's actually a lot more common than people think. Actually, I was just reading about the Ceccato Twin-Cam, single 75cc cylinder, racer that Fabio Taglioni - he designed the original 90 deg. V-twin for the Ducati 750GT (early/mid 1970's) - designed the engine for. He had the basic desmodromic principles down in 1949! There was a pre-war German bike, I think, that also used desmodromic valves.

The Ceccato can be seen in the May/June '10 issue of "Motorcycle Classics"; you can see 3 (!) pictures of one if you search for "ceccato motorcycle" in Flickr. :-)

The ladder/trellis frame of the bike is its secret - rigid and light, it provides a fantastic platform to hang that amazing engine from. It is, however, an awful thing to keep clean! That being said, I'd put my '06 Monster in the bedroom and call it art, but someone I married won't let me. :-(

One of the reasons, a fading reason I think, that people get into Duc's is the same one I did: Mike Hailwood's come-back win, on Ducati 900 at the Isle of Man TT, in 1979. I watched it on the evening news, and it left an indelible memory. I *wanted* a Ducati! Skip forward a few years, and I was doing a bit of carpentry at some medical offices on Broadway, in the lower 20's, (in Manhattan! Almost forgot to mention that) and someone used to park a black Ducati Monster at the corner of Broadway and 19th. I'd spend my lunch half-hour just looking at that bike. Another few years later, I got my Ducati.

One Ducati, and four years later, it can still set my pulse racing, just thinking of taking it a for ride.

Mine's off the road at the moment; a lack of funds and a couple of major problems all spell "no ride". :-( I've heard the new engines are better, and cheaper to maintain! I've never heard anyone say they're as cheap as some Japanese bikes, or a Harley, to maintain, though.

(I'm riding two other bikes that also have "tribes": a Vespa, and a Royal Enfield. The fan clubs are just as enthusiastic for those bikes! Different bikes, different experiences, same enthusiasm. :-) )

(If you want a Ducati, there's a dealer in northern NJ, the one in mid-Jersey having recently closed, and I think the one in Manhattan is still going.) :-)

This is a fantastic post and I especially love the quote how Ducati used their fans to help evolve their brand.

I used to own a Ducati and I'm a diehard fan!

Really great case study. Thanks for sharing it, and wrapping it in such a wonderful article/ post.

Was there anything in the case study that explained how Minoli knew he had an untapped resource in his customers? Was this a situation where this tribe already existed ...and the structure had been organically developed by the community & he was the first to tap into it OR did he see that he had a lot of loyal and vocal customer advocates that were all acting independently and needed a degree of organization/structure?

There sounds like a lot of similarities with the tribe structure to what you might find with Harley Davidson. If he did have a hand in developing the structure (as opposed to it being community built) was HD a model?

Love your blog, great post. Thx.

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