Auto marketing is one of the most comprehensively studied subjects in modern marketing.
Everyone in North America needs a car because of the huge amount of space occupied by the United States (the fourth-largest nation in the world), Canada (the second-largest), and Mexico, and the highly varied terrain of this continent. Autos are one of the most convenient ways to get around.
Easy Online Shopping Is Expected
COVID-19 accelerated the transition to an all-online mobile shopping environment, according to zerosum.ai. After the pandemic, auto marketing news sites report that at least 65% of auto purchasers expect to have at least some online options and at least 73% are more comfortable with negotiating a purchase entirely online. Either way, a secure online presence is expected, and the more features you can make work with your online presence, the more excited your customers will be about interacting with you. Your automotive business will benefit from having researching, negotiation, and purchasing facilities online, with access as a priority. Your sales force needs to be familiar with and comfortable with the techniques of online sales.
Customer Service Differentiation
With dealerships now favoring “no-haggle” prices and other selling schemes that more or less standardize vehicle prices having made auto marketing news, the most important differentiation in auto marketing is customer service. According to AutoTrader, the primary differentiation of the auto dealership experience is customer service, and nearly ¾ of customers (72%) would visit a dealership more often if the buying process was improved. The customer experience is a primary differentiator for these customers, as it should be, and customers are also more likely, when satisfied, to leave a good review online,
What this means for auto marketing is that customer service is as much a marketing function now as it is a sales function. A great sales experience will get customers to come on the lot, which happens less frequently now than it did before COVID-19. The online experience, while it doesn’t replace the “last-mile” part of car shopping, does mean that customers who are
Videos Substitute For Test Drives
In an increasingly online environment for auto sales, the test drive becomes a more difficult way to judge the vehicles. Instead, dealers are offering video tours of their cars as a way to build customer attachment to the cars, just as they did in generations past with test drives. As always, the goal is to both inform the customer and build an attachment to the specific car so that the customer will want to purchase it. A video “test drive” offers an additional benefit to auto dealerships: It keeps valuable stock off the road until it’s time for the customer to purchase the vehicle, while still communicating the product’s virtues to the customer, and helping to build an emotional connection and commitment to the product that the dealership is trying to sell.
Automaker Super Bowl Ads Remain Crucial
The Super Bowl was on February 12, and companies like GM, Kia, and Stellantis, were gold mines. With many people looking to buy electric cars, especially in light of new information regarding coming gas cars sunsetting in the mid-2030s, these commercials can do much to raise both awareness and the cachet of electric cars in an American market that remains somewhat skeptical. This is especially true in areas of the South and Midwest where electric car chargers themselves can come under vandalism by people who mistakenly believe this will slow the uptake of the vehicles. GM’s Netflix-themed Will Ferrell ad, Kia’s “Binky Dad” and Jeep’s “Electric Boogie” were all fantastic examples of the continuing power and pervasiveness of the Super Bowl as a means of bringing new vehicles into the mainstream.
Artificial Intelligence Marketing In The Auto World
AI is somewhere between a buzzword and a dirty word. In the online marketing world, it’s far closer to a buzzword. AI is a great way to streamline basic customer service operations. An AI chatbot can save time by answering very common customer questions and directing customers to basic resources, while chat and live agents’ time can be reserved for questions that require a better sense of judgment. AI can also precisely target ads to potential shoppers who are considering buying a new car.
Be Prepared, Be Adaptable
The smart car dealership in 2023 is more resilient than its counterpart in 2020. We now have a look at a true black swan event with the COVID-19 pandemic, and the COVID pandemic showed that auto manufacturers and dealerships can be creative and flexible in marketing and the presentation of their products to the general public. Many of the tactics and strategies we’ve just discussed didn’t exist in 2020 or were only in the earliest generative parts of being defined. As a result, current auto marketing is both less centralized and more flexible than it ever was before. Just as World War II revolutionized auto sales 80 years ago, so too now does the COVID-19 pandemic.
Marketing at the dealership level has made important changes in the last five years. Cars are not all that much different from what they were just three short years ago, but the ways that they’re marketed have changed. Making your mark in the new environment is still hazardous. But a bold marketer can find a niche and exploit it. Make your customer know your product fits their needs. That’s how it’s ever been.