Thursday, June 21, 2012

Women And The Auto Industry

Coming out of the economic crisis, the auto industry is finding unique and powerful ways to connect with consumers. Getting the consumer through the door and into the showroom is the bottom line. But figuring out how to get their attention is not the biggest dilemma; it is who they should focus their attention on.

  • Women make 62% of new car purchases
  •  Women make almost 80% of the purchase decisions
  •  American women have the purchasing power of over $5 trillion
  •  Women make 65-80% of the service and maintenance decisions

It has always been a golden rule in the automobile industry that you don’t sell cars to women simply because it’s always the man who buys a car, even if it’s going to be hers. This has completely changed and in order for dealerships to bring those buyers through the door, they need to focus on women. 

The car industry, as a whole, has realized they need to focus on women’s needs. An entirely new category of vehicle, the crossover, has evolved largely from women's desire for a vehicle that is sportier than a minivan but handles better than a truck.  The car dealers and brands are making cars for women, the dealership needs to be able to match that and successfully market to women. How can a dealership do this?

Recently, Volvo launched their own line of nail polish to match the colors of their new car models. This successfully gained a substantial amount of media coverage. Women really responded to this, and in fact, Volvo is in the top 3 brands that women purchase. This is not saying car dealers have to offer cookies and manicures to improve the buying experience. The most important thing they can do is change the way they market themselves.

In a business that is owned and operated by men, there is very little indication that the auto industry is trying to understand what types of communications women respond to. Let us help. BBG&G is a woman owned marketing firm that is very familiar with the purchasing patterns of women and has experience working in the automotive industry.

Moving into the Future: Social Media and the Auto Industry

Social media is the new hot marketing platform many businesses have begun to embrace. It can work for any niche. The key is to do it right. A rather conservative industry, the auto industry, is beginning to adopt new media as part of their marketing strategy.

Research indicates that thirty-eight percent of buyers will use social media for research when considering their next car purchase. Forty one percent of those who used social media while shopping said that they saw a post that caused them to add a brand to their consideration. If you are not present in the social media world, these potential consumers are not going to even know you exist.

Other research indicates that 84% of all U.S. vehicle shoppers use Facebook. Even though they may not be researching cars and the auto industry, they can still be influenced by your brand. Being active in social media can lead to sales. The auto industry just needs to communicate transparency and establish trust through these media outlets.

What sort of information are people searching for? Most consumers, when using social media for research, look for price range, features and technology, after sales service, identifying and narrowing down dealerships and finding out where to have service on their vehicle. Make sure this info is readily available for consumers to find.

In total, about $11.9 billion, or 38% of industry spending will be for online formats. Local dealerships need to maintain their traditional media while integrating social media strategies, providing a wider consumer reach.

Call June Bisel or Richard Kurisko at (845) 291-7399. Let’s sit down and discuss some simple ways we can help you communicate more effectively to a market that is craving attention from their local auto dealerships.

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