Consumers have a 45% higher recall of toll-free, vanity 800 telephone numbers than they do of many car dealer website addresses, and those that do remember web URLs often go on to research a dealer’s competition, finds a recent survey..
The first-of-its-kind consumer research (pdf), commissioned by 800response, tested recall of both vanity 800 numbers and URLs in advertising and found that in six out of seven tests, car buyers have an overall higher recall rate for vanity 800 phone numbers.
As an example of one recall test, a sample radio ad for a fictitious car dealership, Bayside Auto Sales, featured 1-800-NEW-AUTO as the vanity number, and BaysideAutoSales.com as the mock URL. Survey respondents had a 52% higher recall of the vanity number compared with the URL, despite the fact that the URL was an exact match to the dealership name.
Recall data also demonstrate that vanity 800 numbers are also more memorable than URLs when used in print, outdoor, and broadcast advertising formats.
Researching Competition is First Step
When asked what steps they take when visiting an advertisers website, the majority of consumers surveyed cite “Research the Advertiser” and “Research the Competition, while 800response's research showed similar results to what J. D. Power and Associates has been reporting for Automotive Internet Users (AIU) for the past 5 years,.. Fewer than 10% of car buyers that see a dealer's online advertising say they would communicate with the dealer prior to physically visiting the dealership. J. D. Power and Associates also has been reporting for the past 5 years of studies that fewer than 21% of car buyers who visited a dealer's website before arriving in person on the showroom floor, contacted the dealer in any way prior to their physical visit.
Moreover, 800response’s examination of multiple industries (auto, home improvement, education and health care) reveals that as many as 40% of consumers research an advertising company’s competition as their next step after they leave from their first visit to the advertiser’s web site. It is important to note that multiple car shopping behavior research studies show that when a consumer uses certain types of features within a dealer's website, they are far more likely to show up at the dealership in person... These known pre-showroom visit activities are called Key Buying Activities (KBA) by some automotive marketers and others refer to them as Key Performance Indicators (KPI) when used to evaluate advertising campaigns and media placements.
(click on chart to view full size)
“The results suggest that advertisers who use their websites as the exclusive consumer response tool risk losing potential customers right from the start, with about one-fifth of consumers citing ‘research the competition’ as their first step,” said Laura Noonan, VP of Marketing at 800response. This brings us to the obvious "Best Practice" conclusion that all dealership advertising should prominently feature BOTH the dealership's easiest to remember toll free phone number, AND a unique and easy to remember URL dedicated and assigned to that campaign. This is further enhanced by placing a different 800 number prominently displayed on the targeted landing page so that marketing managers can differentiate between call volume from the ad itself and call volume generated after consumers visited the dealer's designated campaign landing page.
“The higher recall for the phone number over the web address is significant for a business when they look at return on advertising investment. If companies aren’t including a phone number in their ads, then they are losing that valuable direct communication with consumers who are already beyond the research phase and ready to buy,” said Noonan. Again, the obvious correlative to Noonan's statement is that the phone number used in the dealer's ads, regardless of media channel, should be an easy to remember vanity number for best results.
About the study: The survey was conducted online among 1,000 customers by independent research firm InfoS. The advertisements shown to respondents represented multiple industries including automotive, home improvement, wireless, education, and health care.
The Automotive Digital Marketing (ADM) Professional Community website is built on a perpetually growing"Viral Expansion Loop" Networking Platform and serves Car Dealers, Dealership General Managers and their management teams, including Internet Sales Managers, BDC Managers, Marketing Managers, Sales Managers, Service Managers, Service Advisers, Parts Managers, Fixed Operations Directors and their teams. Launched at the beginning of January 2008, ADM has emerged as a valuable and proven resource for the entire spectrum of automotive marketing and Internet sales related professionals. Interactive Media and eCommerce Professionals at car companies (OEM) and tier 1 and 2 advertising agencies who want to see, hear and read what the best Digital and Interactive Marketing professionals in the automotive industry have to say about relevant and timely topics visit ADM on a regular basis or subscribe to the many RSS feeds available within the ADM community.
ADM is a great place for Tier 1, Tier 2 and Tier 3 automotive marketing and advertising practitioners, as well as Webmasters, dealer web site managers, automotive software developers and information technology solution designers to get new ideas and stay up to date on the challenges facing retail automotive Internet sales practitioners. ADM serves Automotive CRM and Lead Management suppliers, vendors, application developers and their affiliated sales professionals as an online exchange for strategy, tactics, best practices, files, resources and contacts that create powerful networking relationships within the auto industry.
Did you know there are now over 2,000 members on Automotive Digital Marketing Professional Community? Have you reached out to connect with important ADM member contacts by asking them to be your Friend?
AUTOMOTIVE IMAGE AND PHOTO RESOURCES
Did you know that there are over 4,000 photos listed on Automotive Digital Marketing Professional Community? And, do you know that many of these images are actually charts and graphs of the latest marketing trends and research? Did you know that many of these photos are actual ads used by dealers that worked exceptionally well? There have been over 4,000 photos uploaded and made available for use by all ADM members.
AUTOMOTIVE VIDEO FILE HOSTING
Did you know that there are more than 650 videos on Automotive Digital Marketing Professional Community? Have you seen how many of those videos are actual examples of marketing campaigns and business processes used successfully by some of the leading and most successful dealers in America?
GET ACCESS TO AUTOMOTIVE ARTICLES AND PUBLISH YOURS
Did you know that there are over 450 blog posts on Automotive Digital Marketing Professional Community? When was the last time you posted a blog entry and let important ADM industry professionals know what you are up to? Have you checked ADM for the latest articles published by writers who walk the talk? Members have created more than 460 blog posts within their ADM provided websites that feature online file storage and personalized blog hosting at no cost to ADM members.
SOMETIMES CONTROVERSIAL, BUT ALWAYS FASCINATING AUTOMOTIVE DISCUSSION FORUM
Did you know that there are over 400 forum topics on Automotive Digital Marketing Professional Community? Have you checked the forum lately to see what your associates, clients and colleagues are saying?
Have you posted a forum discussion to see what other professionals have to say about the topic?
There have been over 400 discussions started and still active with ongoing comments and information being published daily within the ADM Forum.
SPECIALIZED AUTOMOTIVE PROFESSIONAL GROUPS
Did you know that there are more than 25 professional groups on Automotive Digital Marketing Professional Community? Have you joined any groups so that you can send messages to all other group members?
EVENT CALENDAR FOR AUTOMOTIVE PROFESSIONALS
Did you know that there are Important Upcoming Automotive Digital Marketing Events listed on Automotive Digital Marketing Professional Community? Have you posted what you or your organization considers to be important upcoming events on the ADM calendar so that other professionals will know about them, consider attending and register their intent? ADM members can create calendar events using the ADM site application that allows image and logos, links to registration pages, location maps that integrate with Google Maps, Outlook Calendar integration, invitation mailings using uploaded email lists, RSVP tracking and event management features and a whole lot more.
RADIO SPOTS AND AUTOMOTIVE PODCASTS
Did you know that there are more than 500 MP3 audio files on Automotive Digital Marketing Professional Community? Have you checked out what other automotive professionals are listening to? Did you know that many of these MP3 files are automotive marketing and Internet sales best practice Podcasts, and examples of highly effective radio spots, along with powerful and engaging dealer website soundtracks?
The ADM Professional Community is all about car dealers using the web to generate sales leads and Internet sales. Automotive Internet sales and digital marketing professionals working with Acura, Audi, BMW, Chrysler, Dodge, Ford, Toyota, Chevrolet, Chevy, Honda, Nissan, GMC, GM, Mercedes-Benz, Lincoln, Mercury, Mini, Jeep, Volvo, Saab, Hummer, Cadillac, Buick, Pontiac, Saturn, Lexus, Porsche, Hyundai, Kia, Suzuki, Subaru, Volkswagen and other automotive franchises are ADM's most prolific members. Used car and automotive re-marketing professionals will find a treasure trove of data, files, best practices, strategies, tactics and great contacts within the industry available at ADM.
Welcome to Automotive Digital Marketing
Please use the "Sign Up" link above to complete your registration form and become a member of the industry's leading Automotive Marketing and Internet Sales Professional Community. ADM members have access to resources, connections and private events that provide them with a competitive advantage.