Fall in Love with Your Car Again?

Recently CE Outlook published an article on how millennials are keeping their used cars longer…I think this statement is untrue. I think people are keeping their used vehicles longer. The study they are referring to states, that most younger new car buyers are not purchasing a new car until the age of 29. That means the younger generation who grew up on iPads and iPods will spend roughly 11 years in their used car. Let’s visually break this down. It’s 2017 if a millennial is now 18, he/she was born in 1999. If this “used car” was their first car, let’s say it is a 2004-2008 vehicle or if they are lucky they got a 2010-2014 vehicle. Let’s go to the other end of the spectrum, a 65-year-old man or women, bought a new car at sixty. That would be a 2012 vehicle. Let’s pretend a young couple got married at twenty-one and bought a new car and a house before starting their family. Fast forward today, they have a 4-year-old child. They would have bought roughly a 2013ish vehicle, they have a home and most likely are just finishing up car payments etc. Are they going to try and delay buying a new car, most likely? Don’t misunderstand me, I don’t have a crystal ball, but is your store set up to sell/cater to this demographic?

This article came out the same week Pioneer Electronics launched their “Fall in Love with Your Car Again” campaign. Here is a video of their series:

We can all laugh at these videos, but it does make you think.  Have you ever had your vehicle professionally detailed?  It gives you the same feeling.

Most people looking to upgrade or replace their car’s radio is out of necessity, not passion.  A customer has a 2008 Mazda 3 that does not have Bluetooth for hands-free calling or audio streaming.  But it does have a 3.5mm audio jack for a “media” input according to the extra button on their radio.

In most countries around the world, there are laws about hands-free calling or no electronic devices while driving.  Most people today use their phone for work and as a way for their spouse to remind them of school pick ups etc.  Does this sound like most consumers today?

Let use this example for a consumer walking in or contacting you digitally:

  • Drives a nine-year-old car
  • Married and have kids
  • No Bluetooth from factory (I have a visor mount Bluetooth device)
  • I have no way to stream or play media (iPhone or USB stick etc.)
  • I cannot see my album art or know what song is “Coming up Next”
  • If I use my phone to get directions, change songs or read text/emails, I risk getting a ticket

How is your store set up to solve their problems?

The customer in this example can read reviews or watch youtube long before they reach out to you digitally or walk into your store.  Studies suggest that 90% of consumers, do some sort of research prior to stepping foot in a store.  If a customer only buys from reviews, the whole world would be buying from Amazon.com etc.  But more and more consumers have buyers remorse when buying online, by not getting what they thought were getting or it did not work in their application.  When people are buying items over one hundred dollars, they want to try it first.

Now, let’s go back to the example above, how are you going to solve these six issues?  Does your display allow the customer to plug in their phone to your display?  The hot topic this year is Apple’s CarPlay, this feature allows a customer to simply plug in their phone and have Siri read their text messages, stream their music and use their apps while driving?  Could you demonstrate Apple CarPlay or Android Auto?

We recently went to a large retail store in our area, they had eighteen radios on display, and not one radio/cd player/media player could I plug my phone in to.  The salesperson could not demonstrate or show me how my phone will integrate into my vehicle.  He could tell me, but not show me…youtube can demonstrate it via video but not with my phone.

To make “People Fall in Love With Their Vehicle Again”, you have to show them how to solve their problems or issues, whatever they are.  Is your store/sales staff solving your customer’s issues?

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