There are many different important factors when it comes to automotive marketing. Customer value is an automotive marketing trend that should be discussed and focused on, and here’s why.
The internet and mobile devices have transformed a customer’s auto purchase journey. The internet has made it possible for customers to research brands: google search “Brand A”, “Brand A’s” manufacturer site, best SUV’s, etc. Mobile devices have made it possible for customers to research brands on the go! While on lunch break customers can easily compare vehicle prices on dealership lots. A customer’s path to purchase is filled with five distinctive stops along the way. In order to land more committed customers, a dealership needs to be there for each step.
The 5 distinctive stops are referred to as micro-moments. In this case they are: Which car choice is best? Is this the best for me? Can I afford this? Where should I make my purchase? Am I being offered the best deal?
Which car choice is best?
Did you know that 6 out of 10 car shoppers enter the automotive market unsure of which car to drive? According to a Think with Google article, there are over 100 Google searches, over a dozen videos watched and even more images viewed in only one car purchasing journey! In this micro-moment a customer is exploring all their options.
There is so much potential for a dealership to highlight their brand. Customers typically begin search paths between two manufacturer’s websites. Reviewing each site and eventually comparing the two. Being a part of the beginning of the car purchasing journey will increase a dealerships chances of becoming a part of the final consideration set when it comes time to buy. How can dealerships highlight their brands during those interactions? It’s simple, an example is creating a video that features a real-life view of a specific vehicle model. By doing this a dealership are helping the customer decide if it’s the best choice for their lifestyle. An example of following up in this moment could include sharing a blog post about budgeting and financing for a new car or sharing a social media post that promotes a sale your dealership is having. These are moments that can generate leads which turn into conversions.
Is this best for me?
A customer’s car purchase journey has moved to online. The average car shopper will only make two visits to dealerships, meaning they don’t need to even visit your dealership lot anymore for research! VIN specific marketing is proven to be effective in all journeys of purchases. Why shouldn’t the automotive industry piggyback on this marketing strategy?
VIN specific marketing is the reason why when someone is looking up a product on the internet to purchase afterwards it follows them around pretty much everywhere. The concept is that once a visitor searches a specific brand or in this case a model on your site, you can attach a VIN to them. For example, if a customer is interested in a Nissan Maxima, a dealership can use this information to encourage their purchase decision by occasionally showing them new or used models or a shared post on Facebook that relates to the corresponding model. Customers in this step need to be convinced that the vehicle they are interested in is the suitable for them. This is the moment where a dealership needs to get them excited about the vehicle! Knowing how to emphasize specific car features to the appropriate customer is crucial. If the customer is looking for a family vehicle a dealership should advertise large cars like SUV’s or minivans and highlight safety and comfort features.
Can I afford this?
Customers view purchasing a car as a long-time financial commitment. There are a few customers out there that purchase a car without considering the financial consequences. In this micro-moment a customer spends their time researching: “manufacturer to dealer cash”, “Brand B price”, “best car lease deals” etc. In these google searches if your dealership doesn’t show up there is chance that you lost a potential customer. The potential customer was lost because they couldn’t find the information they were looking for, not because they couldn’t afford the car. Therefore, every dealership should ask: Is my brand showing up? This is something you want to cover with your automotive advertising agency.
If your dealership has specials and incentives that are stronger than the competition, you should want the customers in the market for a new car to know that. More than half percent of customers are using their mobile devices when searching for deals in the automotive industry. Implementing mobile targeted marketing ensures that a dealership doesn’t lose out on leads that rely solely on their mobile device. Mobile targeted marketing could be as simple as designing a dealerships site to be mobile friendly. Creating mobile friendly content such as graphics and videos. Lastly, applying SEO optimized for mobile. These tactics will increase the chances of your dealership to convince a prospective customer that yes, they can afford the car they have been looking at with the help of your specials and incentives.
Where should I make my purchase?
After a customer has done their research on multiple dealership inventory, specials, and multiple vehicles and has finally decided on a car they love the next step is to contact a dealership. This is a crucial step for many customers. If they call a dealership and there’s no answer or the phone number on the dealerships site doesn’t work for whatever reason a customer moves on to the next. The Internet has made it possible for customers to contact a dealership through many other channels such as email or social media platforms. It’s essential that dealerships are on top of all the channels customers can contact them, making sure they respond and follow up.
Dealerships that fail to do this cause their potential customers to turn to another dealer that will provide them with the information he or she was looking for.
Am I being offered the best deal?
The final micro-moment takes place at the dealership. Despite that a customer may be on the lot almost ready to close the sale they are still doing their research. A customer will be searching lease money factors, lease offers for a different model or even a different dealership all together. In this moment a customer wants to be reassured that they are getting a fair deal. A dealerships salesman in this moment should make the customer comfortable with the deal they are about to make. The salesman should verbally explain the deal to the customer with patience until the customer is sure it’s a commitment they want to move forward with.
For more information on how to effectively be present in the 5 micro-moments of a customer’s auto purchase journey, give us a call today at 877-958-4524 or contact us today!
Maria is recent graduate with a Communications degree focused in Broadcast Journalism and Public Relations from William Paterson University. During her time at WPU she excelled as President of an on campus chapter and Features Editor of the student newspaper. She proved to utilize and present accurate content on media platforms such as print, online and social media. Maria is the newest member of the D2D team and is looking forward to entering the Automotive Marketing industry.
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