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Issue: Feb 2014

A New Paradigm in Automotive Marketing

Automotive Marketing: Capitalize on the power of Big Data from Social Media

by Shauli Chaudhuri, CEO, hoojook,

The automotive industry is changing dramatically as customers shop for vehicles, services, collision centers, parts and accessories, in new ways. With the growing popularity of online review and pricing sites, consumers are using the Internet more than ever before to research products, compare prices, search for promotions, make purchasing decisions, and provide feedback. Social media has become one of the key channels in this new connected marketplace of content, communications and commerce.  Consumers are using social media to find and share product recommendations and dealer reviews, voice complaints, display preference, consider peer opinions, capitalize on coupon offers, and engage in ongoing dialogs with their favorite brands.

At hoojook, we believe social media will become one of the most important touch points on the digital landscape for automotive companies to understand, reach, influence and engage customers and prospects based on their personal preferences, behaviors and needs.   It will change the ways companies understand and segment their markets, grow and protect their brands, generate business leads, and assist and motivate people through the customer acquisition journey. 

The multiplication of customer engagement channels and the increasing use of social media are empowering customers of automotive products and services to take control of the purchase process. With a wealth of information readily available online, consumers are now better able to compare products, services and prices—even as they step into dealerships and service centers. When consumers interact with companies publically through social media, they have greater power to influence other customers, to either support or damage a brand.

The shifting landscape is creating important and immediate opportunities for sales and marketing professionals. They must handle not only the growing volume of information but also an increasing variety—including both structured and unstructured data.

In order for automotive marketers to capitalize on these changes, they need new ways to collect, manage and analyze the volume, variety, velocity and veracity of data. Automotive marketers must learn to utilize this data to generate valuable insights for personalizing marketing and improving the effectiveness of their marketing campaigns, deliver a smarter shopping and servicing experience.

Imagining the possibilities

How can big data from social media help automotive sales and marketing? They can improve the effectiveness of traditional automotive marketing tactics by generating new insights while creating new capabilities that drive better business outcomes.

For example:

• Personalized shopping experience: To help serve a customer shopping for a new vehicle or sway a customer’s opinion about a service center, a marketer could analyze all of the conversation and activity happening on the customer’s social networks. By analyzing the personality and preferences of the customer, the marketer can push a highly targeted, real-time promotion to the customer’s social or email inbox. The marketer can even push a targeted message to the customer’s smartphone as he or she shops in the vicinity of a dealership or service center. If the customer has been in an automotive accident, a collision center representative can reach out and offer a personalized and comfortable service. Marketers can also examine broader customer search patterns, preferences and purchases to generate meaningful and interesting offers and suggest complementary services to provide greater value to the customer while boosting revenues.

• Optimized service offers: A marketer could better determine which customers might need a weather-related service and where. For example, a marketer could analyze social media buzz about an upcoming event such as skiing to gauge demand for weather-related servicing needs of vehicles across specific geographic locations. The marketer can also push a mobile message to customers driving into a snowed out area, to inform them about a near-by facility providing snow chains for cars or a quick coolant/antifreeze service. Other possibilities include real-time competitive price comparisons that can help a dealer set launch promotions to attract consumers away from rivals.

• Understand each customer at an individual level:

             Increase the precision of customer segmentation by analyzing the customer’s personality (buying behavior), influence, and preferences across all social media networks

             Gauge the customer’s propensity to buy

             Send a 1:1 communication tailored to the customer’s readiness to “consume” with a message on any of the social media channels or by traditional communication channels such as email

             Enrich the customer’s understanding by integrating multichannel data via partners—from offline transaction information to social media and third-party data—to develop a 360-degree view of the individual and identify emerging trends

             Optimize customer interactions by knowing where a customer is, and delivering relevant real-time offers based on that location

             Offer relevant, enticing promotions and coupon offers to influence customers to visit your location or bite on a service offer

             Automate the process of tracking and managing a brand’s online reputation by aggregating all reviews on the web, amplifying the positive reviews, and managing the negative ones

             Entice a competitor’s customers away

             Win back your dissatisfied customers

Marketing teams can use solutions for big data to collect and analyze customer information from a much wider and rich range of sources than before—including POS systems, online transactions, social media, loyalty programs, call center records and more. That information deepens their understanding of customer preferences, helps them more accurately identify purchasing patterns and enables them to generate more precise customer segmentation. Marketers can then use new insights to deliver highly targeted, location-based promotions, in real time.

The result? Customers gain a richer, more personalized shopping experience with promotions and offers that are more likely to appeal to them. They develop brand loyalty. Automotive marketers, meanwhile, are able to retain a competitive edge and boost revenues by maximizing opportunities, as well as consistently engaging customers across channels and reinforcing their brands and customer-service experience at every turn. They are also able to measure a specific ROI on their campaigns.

hoojook is committed to helping the automotive industry leverage social media to more effectively understand and engage customers, to grow revenue, to improve brand loyalty,  and to reduce the costs of brand marketing and customer acquisition.  hoojook provides an essential new end-to-end platform purpose-built for the automotive industry to help manufacturers, dealers, service provider, after-market vendors and others in the automotive ecosystem to generate, to cultivate, and to manage leads and their brands.  The hoojook platform provides multiple modules to help the automotive industry navigate its marketing and sales in the emerging domain of social media engagement. The hoojook (patent-pending) Big Data analytics engine transforms the chaos of social chatter into actionable information for the automotive industry. hoojook also has a solution that automates brand and online reputation management for any business or site in the automotive industry. hoojook is headquartered in Silicon Valley, CA.

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