The automobile industry is a trendsetter in the marketing world. Automobile companies are known for their amazing campaigns, brilliant ads and technology innovations. We understand how important it is for you to differentiate yourself in the market and how dear your brand-name and logo is for you.
A majority of the customers today, are not a big fan of dealer showrooms. They want to spend minimum time there, that too just for the test drives or necessary paperwork. They want to gather information without getting bothered with follow up calls from the salespeople. So, your online presence is very crucial!
The first thing they do to know more about your brand is…visit your website. Are you ready for that? An average website won’t do! Design your website to wow the visitors. Websites with video backgrounds are a rage these days. Have a look at the website of Volvo. Apart from the aesthetics, your website has to be informative and easy to navigate too. Include interactive features to engage your audience, just like the websites from MAN, Fortuner and Pajero do it. Many brands also provide options like “Request a test drive” on their websites. Better the user-experience, more are the chances of the visitors exploring your vehicles.
If you are still not convinced to revamp your website, let us tell you that buying cars online will become a common practice in the coming years. Selected websites like Volkswagen Denmark are already providing that option. There is no comparison of showcasing a shiny model of your vehicle in front of the prospects, but a hassle-free and negotiation-free purchase process in the need of the hour. According to Marketing week, Toyota’s GB marketing director Andrew Cullis said that their customer research shows that a lot of drivers crave a simple e-commerce buying experience. With Amazon Vehicles, information and reviews about automobiles are just a click away! So, no more waiting for the salesman to get further information with the manager and return.
Even when your prospects are not looking for the information consciously, you need to keep reminding them about your brand and products. Social media is most popular media to reach the generation Y and Z. For instance, Hyundai engaged its prospects on Instagram by letting them explore which Hyundai vehicle suits their personality.
Chevrolet had introduced a social media campaign “Hidden gems” to promote its SUV, Trax. A few social media influencers travelled across Chicago and New York City in Trax, in order to discover the lesser known places. They posted live content on Instagram and Twitter throughout the night! Several videos of this campaign were also shared to further increase the reach. Now, before we discuss any further, we want you to see this mesmerizing video with melodious music.
Videos have become a norm for social media marketing. This is because they are attention grabbing, extremely engaging and shareable. Most importantly, they are very efficient in explaining innovative features of your products or introducing a new product altogether. You can share explainer videos, trailer videos, interactive videos or even broadcast live videos to put your message across to a large audience…but of course! Your content has to be really impressive to be successful.
Check out the number of videos on the Facebook page of all leading brands, like Audi, Honda etc. You can also use corporate Videos. They not only build your brand but also give you an opportunity to boast about your history, products, expertise, work-culture, social initiatives and everything else. Let’s watch this incredibly creative corporate video from Honda:
Events are another great way to spread awareness about your brand. Every brand and vehicle model can be related to one or the other event. For instance, Jeep partnered with the World Surf League, because just like Jeep, this event is also synonymous with risk and commitment. The brand did not forget to spread the word about the partnership:
Celebrity endorsements and customer testimonials are a sure shot way to build trust in your brand. Google demonstrated its self-driving car with a video titled “Self-Driving Car Test: Steve Mahan”. During the first half of the video, the curiosity of the viewers is ignited, the unique features and functionality of car are demonstrated…and in the second half, Steve tells us that he has lost 95% of his vision! On an emotional side, the video promises that the car would provide independence and flexibility to the people who really need it. The epic split by the living legend Van Damme, on two reversing trucks, was a big sensation on Youtube. A single viral video can give your brand a visibility among millions of audience.
Could there be a better way to demonstrate the stability and precision of the Volvo dynamic steering? If you want to add some more energy and fun to your marketing approach, try Gamification. This technique can help your customers( and even your employees!) learn new things in a more engaging way. For instance, Volkswagen introduced a social game Polo-Tag on Twitter. The game attracted people to take a test drive and have a look at the new interiors of the car. Wondering how it all went? Here’s, the video case study:
Similarly, Jeep involves the off-road enthusiasts. They are challenged to check-in at some difficult trails, earn points and win the Badge of Honour! Sounds adventurous and cool, isn’t it?
Your job does not end after your product is sold. Brand loyalty comes from a total experience. You have to build a strong and long-term relationship with your existing customers too. Communicate with them on a regular basis, fuel their passions and provide them all the convenience they need. When you go to get your car serviced at Skoda, they ask you if you are getting the benefits of their app, ŠKODA MyŠKODA. This app connects with the user on a daily basis. It has an interactive assistant PAUL, who guides the customer through the app, keeps a tab on the car and keeps the user informed about everything. PAUL also takes care of the fuel, weather, traffic and even the user’s schedule and calendar! Apart from that, it also provides many instruction videos, dealer information and service details.
So, make sure you stay in touch with your customers. They should feel proud to be associated with your brand. Some brands create clubs and driving tours for the owners. Providing a smooth customer service experience is mandatory nowadays, but doing something extra to delight them makes a lot of difference. Hyundai’s digital owner’s manual makes it easy for the owners to fix their car.
This innovative manual is powered by augmented reality. Augmented Reality(AR) is a mind-blowing technology and so is Virtual Reality(VR). Nissan had also provided the Rogue Studio Augmented Reality kiosk at the Los Angeles Auto Show 2016. The players could fight a simulated battle with the Nissan Rogue. The simulator overlaid AR content onto a live video capture. During this immersive experience, the players came to know more about Nissan Rogue. Recently, BMW became the first automotive brand to offer a 3-D augmented reality experience of its products. Google’s smartphone augmented reality technology, Tango can let the customers explore BMW i3 or i8, with real-size and interactive visualization! Similarly, Volkswagen targeted its young prospects with a virtual reality video of some youngsters having fun(skating and dancing). This was an attempt to promote the new up among the young crowd.
HYUNDAI VR+ is an app that provides the users an immersive experience of driving a Hyundai i20 WRC. Volvo Reality app offers a test drive on smartphones! VR can be used by designers to let the clients see how their car would look after being modified, this can help them visualize better and chose their style accordingly. You can also use VR to let your customers see how they would get to relax in your luxurious waiting rooms(with movies playing, eating area, children’s play-zone etc.) while their car is being checked. Whenever you plan to come up with interesting mobile apps, products or campaign, never miss an opportunity to create some hype with a teaser.
This is the right time to embrace the latest technology and brainstorm with your team to produce an impactful marketing campaign. Take inspiration from approaches discussed above and consult some experienced marketing professionals to bring your brand into the spotlight in your own unique way.