The Mysterious Metrics of Automotive Advertising ROI

Automotive advertising based on behavior patterns sounds like an easy task, especially when it leads to a sale. But how do you accomplish this when every customer pattern is different? Rich Rikess, Cobalt Performance Improvement Consultant, breaks down what you need to know about measuring campaign effectiveness and help convert your shoppers into buyers.

Download the new eBook, Automotive Moneyball, to learn how to make marketing decisions and set advertising budgets based firmly on the metrics that move metal.

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Unless you’ve been trapped under a rock this past year, you’ve heard about the all-knowing, all-telling VDP view. Inventory engagement is a key indicator of whether a vehicle will sell… and VDP views are definitely a KPI that dealers want to track. But the VDP view alone only tells part of the story.

How can you better measure your campaign effectiveness? How do you really know what sells cars online? The answer is what’s next.

At the end of the day, what matters is how many cars you sell. So you need to understand the relationship between different online shopper activities… and sales. Clicks, leads, H&D visits, VIN views… they all have value. But none of them can tell the whole story by themselves.
To predict a sale, you need to look at a combination of shopper events on car dealer websites. Those combinations reveal patterns of shopper behavior. And from there, you can determine what patterns of shopper behavior lead to a sale.

Really, this is all you have to do… OK, get ready to write this down… all you have to do is track your shoppers’ activities across Tier 1, 2 and 3… find out who buys… look back at the actions they took before they purchased… figure out how to link their digital shopping behavior to the sale… and then somehow use that information in your next campaign.

Easy, right?! Oh… and did I mention that there’s really no one combination— The formula is different from shopper to shopper. Do you have that in your game? I don’t have that in my game. I don’t even know how to play that game!

You don’t have to know how to play to win. You just need a ringer. And your ringer… is your ad platform.

You have to advertise on a platform that can analyze all this shopping activity for you… in real-time… and, for each shopper, invest your dollars in the channels that are most likely to convert that shopper to purchase.

Most automotive advertising (ad) platforms are built for building national brand awareness. They’re not built to be able to react to actual shopper behavior and then personalize the shopping experience for each shopper. Real campaign effectiveness comes when you can invest in channels based on how they interact with real shoppers in real time.

Optimizing based on real-time demand is the best way to drive the highest quality traffic to your site… and to your store.

Does your ad platform invest your budget in different channels in real-time… based on what’s working? Not sure? Let me know in the comments. And don’t forget to check out another episode to find out what else is next in your (dealership’s) automotive digital marketing. Just click the link below.

Thanks for watching, and I wish you, Successful Selling.

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