It was only when we started working in the Automotive industry with National Numbers that we realised how diverse it is.
To a novice looking in from the outside the logical assumption is that higher disposable income leads to a rise in the price bracket of cars and car products you look at. This might be partially true but the picture is much more complex than this. We found out quickly that individual car brands and models have specific target customer groups.
Despite the noise around the big car brands and the proliferation of car supermarkets and Autotrader we think there is an opportunity for the wider automotive industry to engage customers with the right sort of content.
You’re right, there’s no point going toe-to-toe with BMW / Audi / Mercedes et al with high production digital adverts but it is possible to do things differently and gain some traction. This article looks at how you can do that.
The automotive industry is entertaining. Lots of our clients don’t have the luxury of working in sectors that customers are intrigued and fascinated by but Automotive is different.
The celebrity cars piece we did for National Numbers filled a gap in the conversation that the core car brands couldn’t fill. Celebrities tend to have car collections which include multiple brands. Customers find this interesting and the way we presented the content was different to what already existing in motor journalism circles. The result was links from The Daily Mail, Top Gear and GQ plus lots of social shares and increases to brand awareness. Overall a great result.
Early Stage Vehicle Browsing
A search for “car buying process” shows you that there is no defined model for how people buy. What we do know is that it is changing. The development of websites and apps means that an increasing amount of the research stage is done online.
Whether your company sells cars or not is a bit irrelevant here. The important thing is that at this point consumers who might not be that open to automotive products or services are now in a stage where awareness is high. The Parkers which car tool is obviously important for them as a method of lead generation for their referral network and useful to their customers as a tool for narrowing down options. Would it still be valuable to Parkers if they weren’t involved in the car selling process? I think it would. It’s an interesting resource that customers will find useful and therefore a positive reflection of their service and brand.
What does this mean for automotive companies who don’t sell cars? If you can add value you will become known as a brand and when someone needs your service you are front of mind when they come to do their own research.
To most people the actual buying of a car is both confusing and scary. The transfer of ownership, the finance packages and confusion over how different models compare on running costs vs how cool they are makes things tricky.
Driving a good bargain is tricky but there are ways that you can help. Again it doesn’t matter that you don’t sell cars. This is all about creating that feeling of indebtedness. You helped them and therefore when the time comes to look at car seats / engine oil / etc they will look at you. Not only that but you should be nearer the front of the queue if you’ve provided something useful.
This is more applicable for car dealerships. The length of time it takes to acquire a new customer means that there is a real push on keeping the conversation alive after purchase.
Recently I bought a new car and I was absolutely delighted by this final step. I got to know Paul and this message really made me feel valued. I will almost certainly repeat purchase from Sytner and I’m referring their business through this blog post.