The automotive industry is driving the U.S. economy as the single largest retail segment in the nation. In fact, it accounted for 20% (more than $1.2 trillion) of retail spending in 2020, according to a “Retail Trends” report from SEMA Market Research. To capture this spending, automotive brands are constantly racing to stand out among the competition.
At award-winning Fort Lauderdale- and Aspen-based full-service public relations and marketing agency Durée & Company, Inc., we understand that consumers rely on a variety of factors to make large purchase decisions, including automotive purchases. To accelerate beyond the competition, automotive brands need to be executing a multi-faceted public relations campaign that resonates across all communication channels. We know how to go full throttle to help brands develop a comprehensive PR strategy, based on consumer behavior and automotive purchasing trends.
Following are our top 5 PR tactics to promote automotive brands:
- Using Social Media ― Social media can be the light at the end of the tunnel for consumers to many brands, especially for first-time automotive purchases. According to Google, 95% of vehicle buyers use digital media as an information source. Consumers perform a great deal of comparative research and shopping around before purchasing a vehicle, and the overall majority of vehicle shoppers use online resources to find answers to their questions even before heading into the dealership, etc.
Engaging content, such as high-quality imagery, car reviews, “test drive” videos, and testimonials can help tell the brand story and create an emotional connection. The watch time of “test drive” videos on YouTube has increased significantly because car buyers are moving deeper into the purchasing process before contacting a dealership. Given the considerable time shoppers spend on social media, creating this content is well worth the investment and can help capture customers.
- Focusing on Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) ― Consumers, particularly millennials, prefer shopping with brands that prioritize philanthropy and giving back. Millennials, who represent a significant portion of the consumer market, grew up in a world where sustainability, social impact, and ethical practices are at the forefront of public concerns. From environmental issues to diversity and inclusion, brands can align themselves with causes that resonate with their target audience. In giving back, automotive brands can help tap into their customers’ preferences and purchasing power.
- Applying for and Winning Awards ― Awards are a critical roadway to take in the automotive industry, as they are an impactful way to show the strides the brand has made in sales, customer service, philanthropy and leadership.
In addition, to increase visibility, automotive brands can apply for awards that demonstrate unique corporate social responsibility (CSR) campaigns they have done, community partnerships and charitable giving. Plus, they can highlight individual and group teams who have hit a significant milestone like a sustainability effort, sales goal, new hybrid or electric vehicle, customer service commitment or safety achievement. Whether it is awards from the local chamber of commerce or prominent national associations, opportunities are available at every level and offer a chance for additional, esteemed visibility.
- Hosting Events ― The automotive industry is one in which consumers want to look, see and feel a vehicle in person. This is a huge deciding factor when they make vehicle purchases. Only 1 in 3 potential car buyers know right away the exact vehicle they want to purchase, leaving the majority of buyers in a place for potential influence.
Brands should consider participating in automotive shows and other industry events, and hosting events on site as part of awareness campaigns. Through creative partnerships, sponsorships and CSR initiatives, automotive brands can also uncover many onsite event opportunities where vehicles can be showcased/promoted and potential buyers can experience the automotive brand in a no-pressure scenario.
- Thought Leadership ― The use of industry expert sources to educate and influence consumers is a great tool to promote an automotive brand. Aside from writing articles on new vehicles, industry trends and technology, brands can promote other angles of the business including CSR initiatives, partnerships in the local community, safety measures, vehicle maintenance, and other best practices that bring value to the consumer, while indirectly “selling” them on an automotive brand.
Putting a multi-faceted PR plan in place can help automotive brands go full speed ahead to engagement through new audiences and establishing deeper connections with existing ones. For brands looking to rev up their PR and marketing efforts, Durée Ross and the team at Durée & Company can steer you in the right direction with a successful strategy. Call us at our Fort Lauderdale office at 954.723.9350 or Aspen office at 970.452.2195 or email us at email@example.com.
About Durée & Company
Durée & Company, Inc. is an award-winning, full-service public relations, marketing and special events firm founded in 1999. The firm has offices in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, and Aspen, Colorado. Durée & Company serves the corporate, agency and nonprofit practice areas for local, national, and international clients. Services include public relations, social media, marketing, content development, advertising, special events, branding, radio promotions and more. Durée & Company clients include well-known names in business, fashion, hospitality, travel, health and wellness, cannabis and hemp, psychedelics, technology and cryptocurrency, marine and yacht, art and culture, nonprofit organizations, legal and professional services and real estate. Durée & Company is a member of PR Boutiques International™ (PRBI), an international network of boutique PR firms. To learn more, call 954-723-9350; go to dureeandcompany.com; cannabismarketingpr.com; or psychedelicpr.com. Join the social conversation and follow Durée & Company on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, YouTube and LinkedIn at @DureeCoPR