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2018 Automotive Marketing Trends

Today’s prospective car buyers aren’t driving from lot to lot on a Saturday afternoon to find their next car. According to an Autotrader study, 88% of buyers did most of their research online before visiting a car dealership.

From finding the best rebates, warranties, and deals to what vehicle ranked highest in safety or best met their needs, people research nearly every stage of the car-buying process. By the time someone enters your dealership, they’re most likely informed and ready to purchase.

As a premier automotive marketing agency, we’ve got 3 trends to help take your automotive marketing to the next level in 2018. 

      1. MOBILize

Mobile devices are a key component in auto-shopping. More than half of all car buyers surveyed agree that their phone is vital for vehicle research. Mobile sites, apps, local search, video content and social media are all opportunities to reach potential buyers.

People still use desktop, but mobile has become the preferred device for comparing vehicles, getting dealer information and vehicle reviews. Adding to the appeal of mobile is the ability to use apps to get warranty information and research dealerships. Chevrolet developed a brand app that allows shoppers customize their own vehicles,  which has since been downloaded over 60,000 times in just a few months. 


      2. LOCALize

Local searches lead to more purchases than non-local. Nearly 80% of local mobile searches result in an offline purchase within a few hours. This is a huge opportunity for astute local automotive dealers.

Customers are searching for locations, business hours, directions, and reviews. Be discoverable. Claim your Google “My Business Page.” Make sure your details are consistent across different listings and match your website. Build local citations and make sure to earn good reviews.


      3. DIGITize

Car buyers’ purchasing decisions are heavily influenced by digital communications. Therefore, dealerships and manufacturers need superior online strategies for engaging with potential customers at every stage of the Buyer’s Journey.

Facebook says that 60% of buyers are in the market for a new car for at least 6 months before purchase. Along their fact-finding mission, they gather info from across various channels and platforms, so you want to reach them early in the process.

How people purchase a car has changed dramatically in the past several years. By the time a customer walks through your doors, they are most likely already well-informed and ready to make a purchase. You need to be ready, too.