Never an easy group to
please, young consumers are making life harder than ever for the auto industry. If they even buy a car -- which is becoming rarer -- marketing related services to younger patrons has become
To illustrate, new research shows that buyers under the age of 35 are two to four times more likely than older folks to consider online reviews, dealer Web
sites, daily deals and mobile mapping services before picking an aftermarket service provider.
That’s according to new findings from DMEautomotive, which recently conducted a
national survey of about 2,000 car owners.
More than 25% of young car owners absolutely insist on only using service centers that offer online appointment scheduling and price quotes.
Making sense of modern marketing tactics has never been more pressing for providers, given consumers’ willingness to find service alternatives.
In fact, while 82% of service
consumers report typically using their original service center, far fewer (37%) said they always visit their dealership for service.
“Service providers that want to attract and retain
customers -- and want to have a prayer with the hard-researching, all-media-hungry next generation -- need a digital service marketing attack plan,” said Doug Van Sach, DMEautomotive’s
vice president of strategy and analytics, in the new report.
Overall, Web and mobile searches are now primarily responsible for first-time customers connecting with dealerships.
As for general car matters, just 51% of consumers now use their owner’s manual -- down from 61% in 2011 -- while only 26% consult actual service centers, which is down from 43% since 2011.
By contrast, 59% of auto servicers now report reading emails on their mobile phones, which is up markedly from 45% just last year.