FordDirect, the joint Ford and Ford dealer network digital marketing services organization, has come out with the results of a survey suggesting that digital advertising is the dominant vehicle driving consumers to dealerships.
The Automotive Digital Advertising Survey, which FordDirect says tracks how digital advertising channels influence purchase behavior of auto shoppers, said 60% of consumers bought a vehicle after contacting a dealer via digital.
“To successfully reach consumers, dealers must participate in the channels consumers prefer, and with the rapid growth of mobile adoption and use of social media in daily life, it’s clear this is online,” said Stacey Coopes, chief executive officer for FordDirect, in a statement. “The results of this study support the need to increase focus on digital and social media advertising because of its market potential.”
The study tapped 1,100 vehicle owners to understand consumers’ attitudes and reactions toward different types of automotive advertising, specifically digital, social and mobile, per the organization.
No surprise -- Millennials' auto shopping behavior centers on digital as a channel for seeking local dealer promotions. They use digital and social media ads more than Generation X consumers and Baby Boomers, per the study. Also, over 40% of respondents have conducted research on a dealership through their mobile devices, with 54% of these mobile auto shoppers looking for deals or promotions. FordDirect also says that the study's results prove the effectiveness of mobile advertising, with 46% of respondents saying they are likely to click a dealer’s mobile ad when browsing through their mobile devices.
FordDirect, separately, says it is launching a search engine marketing program for Ford and Lincoln dealerships. The program, it says, is
designed to boost search traffic and dealers' Web site ranking and relevance. The organization is also offering a digital advertising toolkit for dealers including display ads, and mobile, social,
video and retargeting.
"Car Dealership" photo from shutterstock.