J D Power Archives | Outsell
J.D. Power and Associates held a conference October 12 and 13 in Las Vegas on "Aligning Next Generation Marketing with Today's Digital Consumer.” Chiqui Cartagena, Vice President of Corporate Marketing for Univision, moderated an important first for this annual event—a panel on growing your business with the Hispanic consumer. Cartagena made some interesting observations at the panel, having been concerned initially that automotive companies weren’t taking their Hispanic marketing plans seriously enough. She was pleasantly surprised to find that Nissan, among other attending brands, are very focused on how to best reach their Hispanic consumers. In her article on Ad Age, Cartagena reported that according to data from Polk, Hispanics will spend $18 billion on new vehicles this year. Several other studies have detailed the differences in how Hispanic vs. non-Hispanic consumers view the process of buying a vehicle. A Univision study conducted in 2007 showed that the majority of Hispanics consider purchasing a vehicle a "family" event, something to be proud of and to celebrate. Non-Hispanics are more annoyed with the process and see it as a business transaction that more often than not is also a huge hassle. Obviously, marketing to these two varied groups must be approached differently. One of the exciting ways Nissan is marketing to the Hispanic community is through a campaign for their Versa model. They shot original Spanish-language TV creative, rather than simply translating the English version, as is more often done. They are also utilizing social media and mobile communication for reaching Hispanic consumers with their message. As much as mobile is key for marketing and brand communication in general, the same is especially true for Hispanic consumers.
“43% of Hispanics (against 25% of non-Hispanics) used a mobile device to access the Internet among those planning to purchase a vehicle within 6 months.” READ MORE
According to Nielsen, telecommunications and automotive are among the largest mobile advertising categories. Portada, the leading source on Latin marketing and media, supports the need for Hispanic mobile advertising, but has said that technical issues are no longer what is holding back larger budgeting for the Hispanic market. The problem is creative. Unique mobile-optimized content is needed for all consumer markets to be truly effective. Recent release of results from a study done in 2010 by the Association of Hispanic Advertising Agencies, revealed that automotive, while not best in class for marketing to Hispanics, is among the leaders recognizing that advertising dollars need to be allotted to that important consumer group. More may be needed to join the few pioneers being truly successful with their marketing to the Hispanic community. Are you doing enough to reach that important market? Photo by: Melanie Edwards

Purchase Behavior is Key

J.D. Power and Associates published a white paper in April about “The Death of Demographics: Why Targeting by Purchase Behavior is Most Effective in Automotive Marketing.” This comes as no surprise to those within the digital marketing field, because the onset of so much new technology has shifted the way marketing power is focused.

Looking at demographics such as gender, age, and income are no longer enough for informing on the best marketing and advertizing practices. We need data on the consumer lifecycle. We need to be able to look at and measure the consumer’s buying behavior to predict how and when they are going to buy in the future.

“Demographics, more so than many other tools, has proven to be a much less effective tool in the automotive space, particularly with regard to new-vehicle buyers. The most popular models overall are typically the most popular regardless of the particular demographic.”

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May 27, 2011

Memorial Day Sales

Summer Begins!

Many consumers that did not take advantage of end of the year sales have been waiting to purchase that new or used vehicle Memorial Day. The holiday is one of the most popular weekends for potential car buyers, expecting to come across deal-breaking specials and incentives. Memorial Day is also important for gauging the state of the economy, as it marks the unofficial start of summer and begins a shift in priorities and activities in American day to day life.
Sellers of new and used vehicles have always thrown plenty of promotional muscle behind their Memorial Day sales. This year, however, the stakes are higher. “While many motorists will be hitting the road on vacation, this Memorial Day weekend, it’s also a great time to buy a new car,” according to Consumer Reports. “There are a number of discounts available, and dealers may be more willing to negotiate since it’s also the end of the month and they want to meet their quotas. ” J.D. Power expects nearly 13 million vehicles to be sold in the U.S. in 2011, up 7% from 2010. Read more: Six Reasons The American Economy Needs Memorial Day - 24/7 Wall St.
May was the first month of 2011 when automotive sales started to lose momentum. Fewer incentives and vehicle availability have been a factor. Most hope sales will take an upward turn again with the holiday, but there is some speculation that rising gas prices might deter some buyers, especially over this high-volume travel weekend. Make sure your specials are well-promoted and dynamic to bring in Memorial Day customers, and good luck with your holiday sales!

Go Further This Holiday Season

It is no secret that car sales have been steadily improving, most notably in the past few months. As we near the peak time for end of the year sales, many consumers are already anticipating the largest surge in specials thus far since dealerships will be looking to purge remaining previous year models, like 2009 and 2010, at prices buyers hope will be drastically lower than a new 2011.

 

“We have high expectations for December sales as year-end clearance events should drive the industry to its best unit sales total of the year,” said Jesse Toprak, vice president of Industry Insight for TrueCar.com.

-Car sales surging as year nears end

 

In the Outsell Live Chat Center, while Black Friday saw a surge of consumers, the week between Christmas and New Years is often the busiest time of the year. But there are still some hurdles ahead, according to the previous article.

 

“Even with a strong close to 2010, there remains a moderate level of risk with automotive sales in 2011. Thus, J.D. Power’s forecast for next year has been adjusted downward to 10.4 million units for retail sales and 12.8 million units for total sales.”

 

The other change in consumer habits is the tendency toward buying American, possibly due to the large amount of vehicle recalls in the past year that, while spanning most major car companies, began with Toyota’s high-profile accelerator recalls.

In this difficult economic time, consumers are also being much savvier as shoppers, researching online more vigorously than previous years.

SmartMoney posted an article in August for “7 Strategies for Model Year-End Car Shopping”. Dealerships can use SmartMoney’s tips for themselves to better tailor their specials:

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