Why the Gen Y is in the driver’s seat & why we need to pay attention!

Are we still assuming the customer will come to you because of you? Or better yet said “They will come to you because of you?”  

Place your seat in an upright position and think again! You may end up kicking your own rear down the road.

A study was conducted earlier this year by Deloitte, which intrigued me about the Gen Y shopper & how important it is to “Simply Pay Attention” & conducting your Social Media Strategy the right way. They were able to determine:

  • How the approach shopping for vehicles from start to finish
  • Their experience with the service received from Automotive Customer Service
  • The impact social media has made
  • Their view of jobs that are held in the auto industry
  • Their underlying perception of automotive brands

You or your dealership may be thinking that the Gen Y shopper is all about new vehicles, yes they do think newer is better but not with vehicles.  More than 69% of the Gen Y will purchase a used vehicle in the near future.

Value is an important factor for 2011. As 67% of the Gen Y shopper claimed that the product recalls over this past year were a concern however the good news is more than 67% would still consider the brand despite the recall.

This now comes down to Brand Loyalty. 48 % of the Gen Y expects to be driving the same brand of vehicle in 5 years.  But hold your horses on that one as I get further down into the statistical information all that is listed determinations can make an impact for the Gen Y to switch brands.

How does your Domestic vs. foreign brands stack up next to each other for the Gen Y? 46.9% of the Gen Y says it is important to buy a U.S. OEM brand! But 50.8% say it’s important to buy a vehicle manufactured in the USA regardless of the brand.

With that in mind, 73% of Gen Y says they prefer an import brand which is up from 48% in 2009.

Now we are starting to get to the goodies here with the Purchasing Power & Influence the Gen Y can have for the Gen X & Baby boomers!   70% of the Gen Y is more likely to influence & sway a friend’s vehicle purchase; 60% of Gen X & 50% of Baby boomers claim the same also on influence.

With the Gen Y being such a large impact of influence, 61% directly influence their parent’s final decision on purchasing the vehicle.

Looking at peers & their thinking, Gen Y cares! 88.7% reach out to their friends for opinions about a brand / model before purchasing a vehicle & 79.6% say their friends have a large influence on their purchasing decision too.

With the large influence that is coming from friends, family and so forth; Social Media is playing a large role in the influence. The Gen Y shopper, which accounted for more than 67%, has looked for information on a specific vehicle brand or model within the social networking sites. This is up 25% from the 2009 survey Deloitte had conducted.

While the Gen Y is still in the bowl of unsatisfied with the overall dealership experience, 56% of them avoid face-to-face interaction with the dealership all together.  They would rather work over the internet to fully purchase their vehicle.  Test Drives? 82% of them would like to test drive a vehicle for 24 hours…..! So be prepared when they are looking for a nice test drive and not wanting to buy right then and there.

Over 53% of the Gen Y says that working in the US Auto Industry was not appealing to them at all.

My question to you is how do you perceive this about the Gen Y shopper? Do you just let them do their own thing socially as again their influence is more of an impact than you as a salesperson or do you assume they are buying from you specifically?

Just take a moment to think to yourself of how many friends & family the Gen Y has at their fingertips. Their influence won’t just make an impact to the social grounds but also build your brand of higher recognition.

Pay Attention!

Jennifer Schrader

Visit us on Facebook!

jennifer@ignitexds.com or (231) 360-0730

### By creating a proper social media strategy for your dealership is the most important part of properly marketing to the Gen Y customer.  Not going in with a plan can come back and lose your influence to the public and the community.  If you don’t have a strategy for your social media please contact us so we can help you take the proper steps into making an impact to your community via social media and to the Gen Y customer. Why? It’s what we do best at Ignite XDS.

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