Auto dealerships today find themselves selling to customers of multiple generations. Each generation has its specific likes and dislikes, and dealers need to adjust their sales techniques to have multi-generation selling appeal across the generational divides.
Selling to Older Generations
Most dealerships are familiar and comfortable with selling to older consumers. This includes Baby Boomers (anyone aged 56 or older) and Generation X (aged 40 to 55). Both of these groups grew up with considerably less technology than younger generations, and they tend to shop for vehicles more traditionally. They’re influenced by television and print advertising and not so much by social media. Direct mail and email marketing can also be effective with this audience.
Multi-generation selling to Boomers and Gen Xers requires an “old school” approach. You’ll benefit from building a face-to-face relationship with the prospect. They want to trust the dealer they buy from and like to be taken care of with first-class service. They prefer one-on-one phone calls and in-person chats to impersonal text messages. Salespeople should dress professionally to convey a quality image.
Selling to the Younger Generation
Millennials, also known as Generation Y, are the children of Boomers and early Gen Xers, typically aged 24 to 39. Following them are the even younger buyers in Generation Z. These younger buyers are not only the future of vehicle sales, but they’re also a considerable part of the present. According to Dealertrack, Millennials represent the fastest-growing segment of auto buyers, with 35% of all loan originations.
You’ll need to adapt your marketing strategies to reach Gen Z and Millennial buyers. Forget about print advertising and direct mail, and probably even email campaigns. Instead, focus on social media marketing via Twitter and Instagram. You should also make sure you have an active profile and presence on vehicle comparison and review sites because these younger buyers put a significant emphasis on online research. Naturally, an informative and easy-to-use website is essential – and make sure your site works equally well on mobile devices as it does on computer screens.
Even though these are digital-forward buyers, they still crave a superior dealer experience. While 56% of Millennials said digital research has a big impact on what car they choose, 85% said they wouldn’t buy a car without seeing it in person.
Selling Across Generations
Your sales staff need to be trained to be attentive to the unique needs of each generation. Whether it’s marketing, sales, or service, there is no one-size-fits-all solution. Make sure your dealership offers not just the right vehicles but also the best F&I products and services for each type of buyer. The ACE Group can help you tailor your F&I product bundles to appeal to different types of customers – and maximize both your sales and profit margin.
Contact The ACE Group today to learn more about multi-generation F&I products and services.