Women now account for the majority of auto sales, yet many dealerships don’t appeal to a lot of women customers. The reason is simple; these dealerships make costly mistakes when doing business with women. Let’s review the 5 costliest mistakes dealerships make when marketing to women, and how to avoid them in the future.
1st Mistake: “I don’t need to market to women.”
Reality: Women influence 95% of auto sales, and personally account for 65% of the sales.
Tip: Women have become the primary buyers in the auto industry. Not marketing to women directly may mean a huge loss of sales.
2nd Mistake: “Marketing to women is the same as marketing to men.”
Reality: Women react positively to ads with emotional appeal.
Tip: Women like emotional connections, such as a father interacting with his son. Avoid drone, stereotypical approaches (e.g. commercials depicting a mom picking up her kids in a minivan). These commercials don’t “connect” women with the car or the dealership. Focus on using relationships in your marketing campaigns.
3rd Mistake: “A list of ‘cool’ features will draw women in.”
Reality: Women want to understand the product value.
Tip: Rather than listing a bunch of ‘cool’ features in their ads, Volvo built an entire campaign around their slogan “Volvo for Life.” Their message conveys the two most important features to women: safety and dependability.
4th Mistake: “Women aren’t online as much as men.”
Reality: Women (who comprise over half of all online users) do the majority of online shopping.
Tip: Go where your target audience is. Women use the Internet for research, but they also flock to social media channels for advice from family and friends. If you have a strong presence online, then women will note that. Don’t forget, if you have a great review from a customer, post it on your website or social media page! Women read reviews as part of their research.
5th Mistake: “Women don’t expect much from salesmen.”
Reality: Women want great customer service.
Tip: Women walk into a dealership and expect to be heard (whether they are accompanied by a man or not). Women research potential cars online and generally know what the vehicles offer. Listen to what they ask, and address their questions instead of promoting features you think they would like. If a woman customer thinks the salesman isn’t listening to what she has to say, she’ll find a dealership where the salesmen will.