The automotive industry is a very broad one:
The only areas of the industry that tend to use advertising are the car manufacturers themselves (Toyota, Audi, Peugeot etc.) and there is only a small number of these manufacturers that use this form of marketing. However, the car industry is very broad and diverse – and crowded. Standing out in the crowd is what advertising is there to help you do.
The industry in the UK is struggling, as the recession has bitten in harder than the government expected, the car industry has had a difficult time. Most people do not have sufficient disposable funds that they can invest £6,000, £15,000 or more into a brand new car. Finance is a route that most people take, paying a small affordable amount each month in order to cover the cost of the car (plus interest) and have the prestige feel of having a new car. The government did introduce the scrapage scheme (trade in your old car and get cash back for it towards the new car) to kick start the automotive industry and get people buying again. This has worked, however as of Christmas 2011 things have dropped again as the UK prepares for another double dip recession.
There are a number of forms of marketing available to automotive companies, some more popular than others:
These are the main mediums on offer for advertising for automotive companies. However there are other forms that can work. Social media marketing is popular these days, and is very affordable.
For any automotive business, selecting the right agency is essential. Selecting the wrong one will result in a poor campaign, possible waste of money and possible damage to your brand. The best advice is to use an agency that has a track record in advertising for automotive companies. One that has worked with businesses in the industry and can produce results based on their automotive marketing experience. There are hundreds of advertising agencies around the UK to choose from, each making claims about their skills and achievements. Visiting agencies is something that cannot be overstressed. These days companies use websites to sell themselves (and can often embellish on what they can offer, achieve) so a meeting is a good way to ensure that the agency is all they claim. A meeting also gives the chance to build a relationship with the team, to get to know the agency and ensure that they put 150% into your campaign to ensure that it produces results. This nicely leads on to the most important consideration – results. Results are the main thing that governs the way an advertising campaign can be assessed. Asking the agency about what kind of results can be expected and putting performance measures in place a is something that has to be done.
All advertising companies in the UK set their own prices, all are privately owned companies that have their profit margins and need to cover staff costs, rent of offices, cars, houses, holidays etc. When considering using an agency, the profit margins that have added do need to be considered and negotiated. Certainly with some of the top agencies in London, their costs will incorporate much higher profits than a smaller advertising company in the south west. Shopping around for advertising prices and comparing quotes is important to avoid overpaying someone.