Digital Summit @ Mountain View: Disclosures of an Auto Conference Virgin, Part 2

Dealers Doing it Right Panel
Dealers Doing it Right Panel

Last week, I shared a number of key learnings from the Digital Summit @ Mountain View, from my vantage point as someone new to the auto conference circuit. As promised, here are the last 4 of my top 8 takeaways from the Summit.

5. Look at search as only working part of a bigger, holistic strategy: “It’s not just about search anymore,” according to Jonika Hoomes of Google. Don’t get me wrong, search is still important. In fact, 71% of people find it useful while shopping for cars. The point here is that it has to be combined with other tactics to really make an impact. For example, search coupled with display really hits home. Some marketers may believe that display is just a branding tool (I, working for HookLogic, surely know otherwise!). Think again!  Display + Search = Sales.

6. Dealers MUST be online. The proof is in the numbers: So many great statistics were shared during the Summit that prove what most of you already know. Either way, here’s a pat on the back and some further validation that digital dealers RULE!

  • People consult an average of 18.2 sources before buying a car. For choosing a president?  Only 14.
  • 90% of car buyers start their research online
  • 50% of car shoppers pick their dealership online
  • 76% of today’s car shoppers who visit a manufacturer’s website, visit a dealer site within 30 minutes.

7. Make everything tangible and relatable: Both Guy Kawasaki and Grant Cardone both touched on something all marketers need to remember: Use salient points. Relate what you’re saying…and selling, to things your customers understand. For example, ask a car shopper, “How much did you spend on your last vacation?” and then, “How long did that last?” in relation to the price of a car and its longevity. It really puts things into perspective.

8. Video drives engagement: Our very own Jeff Kershner held a panel discussion entitled, ‘Dealers Doing it Right’ which touched on a number of innovative tactics, such as video, that car dealers are using to drive customer engagement and sales. According to panelists, using video in email leads to much higher open and engagement rates. Panelists also mentioned that inventory that is displayed on youtube tends to sell faster than inventory that is not. It seems like video is well worth doing. Lastly, I can’t help but give a shout out to our client, Capital Motors for creating this video  to promote their Trade and Upgrade program.  I highly encourage you to check it out!