The automotive industry is currently having to rethink its marketing strategies going forward. Car sales have been on a steep drop since 2020 due to the pandemic. Moreover, modern consumers require a different approach than traditional tactics. According to Google, 95% of buyers start their search online instead of at a dealership. Every sign points toward digital marketing as the answer for car dealers. There are many reasons for this, not just the pandemic. The truth is that consumers have been making the transition to digital for quite some time now.
Dominate Google’s SERP for Relevant Keywords
In the past, vehicle buyers would flock to car dealerships to both browse cars and make a purchase. Even before the pandemic, online car shopping was on the rise. That’s especially true when it comes to doing research. Instead of heading to a dealership, consumers will largely conduct research online first. With a multitude of devices capable of reaching the internet, buyers can do research anywhere, any time. In a few minutes, they can learn vital information about the vehicles piquing their interest.
Since so many customers start their search for a vehicle online, car dealers are flocking to SEO (search engine optimization) marketing techniques. These involve manipulating search engine algorithms to rank higher on search engine results pages. If a car company shows up as the first result on Google, it will get the most clicks. That’s why dealerships need to welcome digital automotive marketing with open arms. It’s the way of the future for attracting new customers eager to buy new vehicles.
Digital Automotive Advertising
To drive sales, dealerships need to take new approaches to advertising. Local TV ads aren’t going to cut it anymore. Not only is the viewership for local TV in stark decline, but the effectiveness of those ads is hard to track. In today’s age, the TV may be on, but the occupants of the home could be distracted by their phones and laptops. Instead, more car companies are opting to advertise online and through social media. Ads that are personalized and interactive are the most desirable in this space. Customers are eager to learn about each vehicle’s features and benefits online. So for instance if there’s a customer shopping for a sporty car like a coupe, they’re able to check out all the features online before making a final decision. That way, they don’t have to endure a face-to-face meeting with a salesperson in order to do research.
Unifying Data for Optimal Analytics
Traditionally, automotive companies work in silos. Their marketing, sales, financing, and other departments are all independent. In the digital age, this is undesirable. That’s because cross-communication and data sharing is next to impossible with a siloed approach. To get the most out of digital marketing, car companies need to unify their data. That will enable them to compile all the data from social media, marketing, finance records, and more for analytical purposes. That will allow them to personalize their messaging, interact and engage with customers, and more. A company that’s embraced this tactic is Subaru, as they’ve combined all their data from multiple departments to improve sales.
The automotive industry is entering a new phase, especially for its marketing. The pandemic forced a shift to digital sales, and now car companies have to adapt. The ones that win will be the ones that shift to digital marketing and unify their data.