According to internationally acclaimed journal Automotive News, the automotive sector accounts for 20% of the World’s largest 100 advertising companies with an ad spend of approx. $47bn, and included seven automotive manufacturers within the World’s Top 25 advertisers in 2015. This resultant expenditure highlights just how much manufacturers needed to spend in order to compete for a share of the 88 million vehicles sold the following year (Source: PwC). Volkswagen spent $6.6bn and was the largest ad spender but they still failed to appear in the Top 10 automotive manufacturers on brand value after the emissions scandal hit the news in 2015. So, we can’t underestimate the importance of automotive marketing to the consumer which will be the subject of an event ‘Revving-up Customer Engagement’ in London, this month.
Manufacturers are now exposed to ever increasing levels of pressure, caught between advanced technologies such as digital connectivity, electric and autonomous vehicles, as well as competition from outside the traditional automotive manufacturers such as Tesla and Google on one-hand and economic uncertainty on the other. In the UK, the Institute for Fiscal Studies, stated just last week, that incomes would continue to fall in real-terms until 2021 (with average earnings on course to be £1,400 p/a lower in 2021 than forecast in 2016). This news will require automotive manufacturers to be extremely meticulous with their advertising and marketing activity as they try to secure their share of consumer spending in the years that follow. Such steps may even press them further towards forming stronger allegiances with further need to develop R&D initiatives between brands which might well form more natural allegiances to ‘spread the load’.
These issues will inevitably drive more sophisticated levels of customer engagement borne from an increased understanding of ‘Big Data’, whilst also paying particular attention to the forthcoming General Data Protection Regulations (GDPR) necessary to comply with every consumer’s best interests rather than to alienate them, or drive them cheaply towards the competition.
How are automotive manufacturers planning on developing their engagement strategies? If you’d like to find out, you are welcome to attend a forthcoming Direct Marketing Association event in London that runs between 08:30 and 11:30 on Tuesday 12th December 2017 as my guest.
You’ll see practical case studies of loyalty strategies being used to tap into the things customers think, feel and do when buying a car from leading brands and agencies in the automotive sector.
If you would like to attend the event for free as my guest (tickets priced at £50), please drop me an email. The deadline for responses is next week, Tuesday 5th December 2017.
However, if you can’t make the event but wish to share your views on this huge subject please do get in touch via the blog or any of our contact methods.