Last month the team over at Sophus3 revealed their latest market research report. This ground breaking project was the biggest ever study into advertising effectiveness in the automotive sector and was the result of 5 months of research by the independent digital intelligence and marketing consultancy in partnership with the leading automotive publishers Haymarket, Bauer, Auto Trader and Dennis Publishing along with a leading automotive brand.

Sophus3 MD, Scott Cairns, explains how this in-depth study into the impact of digital display advertising on automotive consumer online behaviour generated some powerful conclusions –
“We analysed over 135 million automotive publisher visits, nearly 6 million ad impressions, over 10 million visits to the participating car brand website and over 50 million visits to competitor sites. We believe that ultimately this ‘at scale’ approach is critical in achieving a true understanding of online behaviour – and the impact of digital advertising within it – which cannot be achieved by a panel based approach or attitudinal surveys.”

The key finding from the research is that targeted commercial messages within premium automotive publisher sites can increase traffic to a brand’s website by 67% – this uplift in shared visitors was seen when a customer viewed an ad on a publisher site and then visited the brand within 30 days.

Other headline findings include:

  • Behavioural engagement was improved by an exposure to advertising; bounce rates were nearly a third lower and dwell time was increased by over 2 minutes.
  • Digital advertising delivered significant incremental traffic volumes to the brand’s platform within a timeframe closely aligned to the car buying decision journey.
  • Exposure to advertising significantly reduced the propensity to visit a competitor brand, with visitors 27% less likely to go to a competitors sensate within a 7 day window.

In conclusion, the report finds that ‘Digital advertising remains an effective means of driving engaged visitors to car brands sites. Exposure to ads measurably increased the subsequent attention, engagement and loyalty of visitors to the brand’s site.’

Whilst this is all great news for the marketing departments of car brands, its worth noting that there is still a vast reliance upon human interaction to convert these digital leads into real life customers. TrackBack Sales Director Ian Perkins comments that “providing the dealer network with the right tools to follow up leads quickly and efficiently, with a personalised message to the customer is extremely important if brands and dealers want to convert these leads into sales. That is why TrackBack exists, because we believe that every lead deserves great follow-up.”

You can download the full report here –