Thursday, September 18, 2014

Why media buyers and dealers should beware of the BIG numbers



One of the first lessons I learnt in advertising back in the pre-Google days was to plan media schedules for some of country’s biggest retail shopping centres which was a pretty easy task back then as there were really only three mediums on tap – TV, press and radio.
The very first one I prepped was for the launch of a shopping centre in Melbourne’s eastern suburbs. 
I filled in the ‘Xs’ in the columns, added up the figures and presented them to the agency’s media buyer.
He took one look at my schedule and shook his head. Not because I couldn't add up or chose the wrong stations, but because I’d overspent on media.
As best as I can remember the conversation went something like this: “Son, the client wants a ‘soft’ launch – she doesn't want a big bang with thousands of people arriving on opening day for free coffee and balloons and creating havoc in the car park. Besides, she’d have to put on more security, the store owners would have to employ extra staff and the traffic congestion and hassles of people trying to get to the centre would be horrendous.”
It was the old story. Our media buyer and the client wanted QUALITY. Not quantity!
I was reminded of this other day while looking at the editorial traffic numbers of Australia’s major online automotive sites.
According to Google search the top four numbers are Carsguide, Car Advice, Drive and The Motor Report.
You can test this for yourself.
Simply clean your browser search history from your computer or tablet (this is important, your browser notes and remembers where you commonly go, which can skew results) and type the year, make and model of each of the cars you sell into Google search, and check the search returns.
These four sites dominate the results because they are number one, two, three and four in Google search.
They also dominate search because Google has learned that people visiting these sites trust the information they provide in conducting their research for their car-purchasing decisions.
This is QUALITY traffic.
While there are other sites that deliver massive numbers, they don’t necessarily convert to QUALITY traffic.
So before you commit a truckload of money to your next campaign ask yourself how many pages of display inventory will be served to those casual viewers.
And if you’re paying per impression, how many impressions will you burn on low value eyeballs?
It’s a bit like the shopping centre analogy. What’s the point of unnecessarily maxing out your budget to hit thousands of people who have no intention of buying when with astute planning you could be reaching in-market new car buyers who are genuinely researching prices, specs, features and product opinions through reviews?
This is QUALITY traffic!
And if you’re paying per impression doesn't it make sense to go where in-market buyers are going? 
photo credit: Today is a good day via photopin

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Nissan CEO challenges Aust Govt to do more on electric cars


Nissan Australia Managing Director, Richard Emery, called on Australian Governments to do more to ensure electric cars are viable for Australian buyers. He said that while manufacturers were “doing their bit” in developing and manufacturing low-emissions cars, Australian governments were not. If you missed this very informative report by leading Aussie motoring journalist Tim O'Brien, click here: http://www.themotorreport.com.au/59815/nissan-australian-government-needs-to-do-more-on-electric-cars

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Automotive and Technology Leaders Define the New Auto Industry and Break News at 2014


- 80 presenting experts
- 20 conference topics and executive interviews
- Multiple news conferences
- 50,000 square feet of exhibits
- New Connected City Summit on Nov. 20
- Ford Connected Car/Connected City App Pursuit Winner selected

Connected Car Expo(R) (http://connectedcarexpo.com/ )(CCE), the auto industry's authoritative gathering of automotive and technology leaders, announced today its line up of news and speakers that are helping define and shape the future of transportation. 

Breaking news from Audi (http://www.audiusa.com/ ), Hyundai (https://www.hyundaiusa.com/), Volvo (http://www.volvocars.com/us/pages/default.aspx ), KPMG (http://www.kpmg.com/ ) and several other exhibitors will highlight a full day of expert presentations in conjunction with Los Angeles Auto Show's (http://laautoshow.com/ ) Press & Trade Days. 

At the Connected Car Expo, Audi and NVIDIA will demonstrate how automotive innovation and infotainment are accelerating by bringing the development cycles of cars in line with the latest consumer electronic breakthroughs. Both companies will also preview what's to come with the next generation of Audi's modular infotainment platform (MIB), powered by NVIDIA.

Hyundai will showcase its core interior design principles of safety, intuitiveness and simplicity inside its CCE booth. Executives will demonstrate the Genesis Intelligent Assistant, Blue Link 3.0 app, Assurance Car Care in-vehicle app, Android Auto and Apple CarPlay. Hyundai expects to be one of the first manufacturers to bring CarPlay and Android Auto to market. 

Volvo's "Drive Me" autonomous vehicle will also make its North American debut on the CCE show floor, with executives discussing the car's progressive autopilot technology. Volvo will showcase the car's autonomous lane following, speed adaption and merging traffic capabilities.

Other exhibitors presenting their latest advancements in the connected car space at CCE include (among others): 

Al & Ed's Autosound (http://www.al-eds.com/ ) - its Drive Safe exhibit will demonstrate the latest aftermarket products from companies, including Mobileye (http://www.mobileye.com/ ), that enable the used vehicle market to upgrade with the latest safety and infotainment technology 
App Annie (http://www.appannie.com/ ) - showcasing app analytics, market data, business insights and competitive intelligence for companies with a mobile presence in the automotive space 
Continental 
(https://www.conti-online.com/generator/www/start/com/en/index_en.html ) 
- demonstrating its connected car solutions that leverage the cloud and big data analytics. At CCE, Continental (together with Cisco and Pravala) will demonstrate its cloud based threat protection, multi layered firewalls, advanced connection management, seamless switching between channels and sources, and higher speeds and faster connections when connecting / bridging to devices 
Garmin (http://www.garmin.com/en-US ) - introducing Gemini, its highly scalable navigation core for automakers that provides a faster, more intuitive and feature-rich in-dash navigation experience that supports over-the-air map and software updates; Garmin is also featuring its interactive heads-up concept designed to help keep driver attention on the road 
Hertz NeverLost (https://www.hertz.com/rentacar/reservation/ ) - showcasing its next generation in-vehicle navigation system and its ability to sync directly with NeverLost's recently launched Companion app
Lochbridge (http://www.lochbridge.com/ ) - highlighting elements of the "automotive-grade app factory" that will enable developers and automakers to drive in-vehicle innovation; Lochbridge is also introducing the next evolution of its LAYR infotainment concept featuring new contextual and adaptive features 
OnStar (https://www.onstar.com/web/portal/home?g=1 ) - demonstrating its newest generation of telematics with 4G LTE connectivity, which will bring integrated Wi-Fi hotspots and other enhancements to more than 30 Buick, Cadillac, Chevrolet and GMC vehicles by the end of 2014; 
OnStar will also be illustrating the possibilities of a vehicle with an embedded high-speed data connection 
Verizon (http://www.verizonenterprise.com/ ) Telematics - featuring vehicle-centric and driver-centric solutions to enhance the driving and ownership experience

"Los Angeles is on the cutting-edge of automotive technology and mobility, making the Connected Car Expo the ideal place for automakers to reveal their latest vehicle technology," said LA Auto Show and CCE President, Lisa Kaz. "We're looking forward to the exciting discussions and seeing some significant vehicle unveilings on the Show floor during Press & Trade Days." 

Ford will have an important presence at CCE, featuring the company's Connected Car-Connected City App Pursuit finalists. These finalists participated in the first phase of the Hackathon and App Pursuit at the Connected Car Expo during CTIA's Super Mobility Week and used data generated by Ford vehicles and from the City of Los Angeles to create innovative apps. The finalists will display their apps at the CCE at the LA Auto Show and compete for a chance to win a prize package including a feature announcement with Ford on stage at the 2015 International Consumer Electronics Show.

CCE's panels and discussions will examine the future of the connected car across a broad range of subjects, including automotive cybersecurity, consumer appeal, device connectivity and more. Leading these discussions will be industry luminaries such as Peter Schwartz, internationally-renowned futurist and business strategist; Jim Christy, President and CEO of the Christy Group and former Director of Futures Exploration for the Department of Defense Cyber Crime Center; Phil Abram, Chief Infotainment Officer for General Motors and Scott Fischer, a professor and founding Chair of the Interactive Media Division and Associate Dean of Research at the University of Southern California's School of Cinematic Arts. For a full list of panel topics and speakers please visit ConnectedCarExpo.com/schedule (http://connectedcarexpo.com/schedule/ ).

In addition to the press conferences, expert presentations and double the exhibit space from the previous year, show organizers are introducing the Connected City Summit (http://laautoshow.com/connected-city-summit/ ) on Nov. 20. The new event will assemble leaders in the automotive, technology and government sectors to address issues including infrastructure, cyber security and urban architecture evolution. 

Ranging from exclusive industry parties to private dining experiences, CCE's signature networking events are designed to connect featured experts and exhibitors with CCE's most engaging and discerning attendees. This year's networking events are made possible with the creativity and support of AT&T Drive, Auto Alliance, Elektrobit, Global Automakers, KPMG, Lixar, OnStar and QNX. Attendees interested in reserving a spot at every event are encouraged to register here (http://registration.experientevent.com/ShowLAS141/ ) for the Premium Pass (includes access to all three days of CCE networking events and educational programming). 

Monday, September 15, 2014

A New Deal for Car Dealers and Buyers from THE MOTOR REPORT and SALEFEST Advertising

The Motor Report online automotive news and reviews site, and Salefest Advertising, are pleased to announce a fresh and wholly-new approach to online new car dealer advertising.

“Having been tested live with participating Victorian dealers over the past month, the Car Dealer Connect platform we’ve developed promises to revolutionise the way dealers present their brands and inventory online,” The Motor Report Managing Editor Tim O’Brien said.

“For too long, car dealers have accepted having their dealership and dealer brand cloaked behind third party lead-generation sites, like carsales.com.au.

“This has restricted the opportunity for dealers to build their internet presence, restricted opportunities for dealers to build direct relationships with their customers online, and has placed a wall in front of their own online real estate.

“In cloaking the dealership and hiding the dealer website, it has also meant that other commercial activities of the dealership - such as finance and insurance - have also been cloaked from their online customers,” Mr O’Brien said. 

The dealership front and centre
“Our model is different; it puts the dealership front and centre. It serves dealer display advertising offers directly to visitors reading about or researching a vehicle brand or model online.

“If they’re reading about Peugeot, or Mitsubishi, we serve them a relevant Peugeot dealer or Mitsubishi dealer advertisement, targeted to the reader.

“This way, it connects the dealer directly with in-market buyers when they are warmest.  

“Fortuitously, this is also the day that carsguide.com.au has launched its new car dealer advertising model. The market has suddenly become very interesting,” Mr O’Brien said.

The Motor Report is one of Australia’s largest online editorial sites for automotive product news and car reviews, averaging 400,000-450,000 unique Australian visitors a month. Importantly, its traffic has been built entirely off ‘search’ and ‘organic’ growth. 

Salefest Advertising is Australia’s largest full-service advertising agency specialising in the new car dealer sector.

With offices in Victoria and Queensland, and with more than 25 years of service to the industry, Salefest brings unparalleled experience in the provision of services to dealers, and unparalleled understanding of the industry and its needs.   

“This platform allows dealers to reclaim their inventory and removes the cloak that third-party lead generation classified sites place across the dealer brand,” Salefest Managing Director Mr Tessier said.

“With powerful geo-targeting software, this product is being rolled out to dealers across Australia. As it matures, it will also carry dealer advertising across an ever-growing footprint of allied sites: automotive, lifestyle, travel, and more.

“As part of the initial roll-out, we are offering participating dealers 100 percent ‘share of voice’ for their brand in each state.

“This is an exciting time for the industry. New car dealers finally now have options that will allow them to break the shackles of ‘third-party’ sites holding and cloaking their online inventory,” Mr Tessier said.  

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