Digital Automotive Campaigns: How to drive success…

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Audience Store attended the IAB Automotive seminar on Tuesday 12th March, here are a few key takeaways for driving success with automotive campaigns online


1. Include footfall measurement

As the measurement of user intent evolves, traditional metrics such as CTR and brochure requests are no longer viewed as adequate indicators of success on their own. Instead, the development of footfall as a key measuring tool is allowing digital marketers in the automotive sphere to showcase the effectiveness of their campaigns beyond the online environment.

As well as tracking dealership visits, footfall measurement offers exciting targeting and optimisation opportunities – whether this be the ability to target users who have visited competitor dealerships or identifying which dealerships benefit the most from digital activity and subsequently upweighting activity. Automotive marketers must start to understand the journey of their audience into the dealership and beyond, and footfall is a great place to start!


2. Consider the full funnel

A car purchase is a big ticket item with a long consideration phase, therefore it is important to interact with a customer throughout their journey and not neglect the upper funnel. Indeed, only 6% car buyers are in market at any one time (source: TI Media) and the average number of car brands considered before purchase in 2018 is 6 (source: Sophus3). It is imperative to build a strong relationship with car buyers at all points in the purchase journey to differentiate your brand in crowded market place.

Branding activity (e.g. rich media creative, influencer engagement, social activity and establishing brand voice) is therefore extremely important both online and offline in order to influence purchasing behaviour in the long term.


3. Car is a milestone purchase

67% luxury purchases are made after a milestone (Source: LinkedIn). This can include graduating, changing jobs, getting promotion or getting a pay rise. Furthermore, the timescale is shortening between new car purchases as car finance buying models increase in popularity.

Therefore, it is important to ensure that your direct and goal-based marketing is well-targeted during these periods and takes place on the most effective platforms. For example, advertising on LinkedIn could be a successful strategy for reaching in-market car buyers following a promotion.


4. Close the gender engagement gap

It is important for car brands to create their advertising campaigns for both men and women. Based on data collected by Marie Claire in 2018, 76% of women are disengaged by auto ads, while 40% are the sole decision makers in the car purchasing process in the UK (Source: TI Media). In a digital online context, it is important to ensure targeting does not exclude female contextual environments and that creatively, ads cater for both a male and female audience.

Changes as simple as including a female driver in versions of video advertising or targeting a traditionally female publisher context can make a big difference, and ensure that half of your audience is not excluded!

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