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Types of customer data that will help you better understand and connect with car buyers

In this era of hyper-connected, super-personalized customer experiences, leveraging customer data makes all the difference in car sales.

Are you ready for some detective work? See, in our auto dealership universe, there’s this untapped goldmine that’s waiting for a bit of investigation—call it your version of The Blacklist. It’s called customer data. In this era of hyper-connected, super-personalized customer experiences, knowing your customer makes all the difference.

So, let’s jump into our data and navigate the intriguing landscape of four key types of customer data.

Demographic Data: Unveiling Customer Profiles

Imagine demographic data as a first date with your customers. It’s the introductory conversation where you get to know the basic but oh-so-important details about them.

Age and Gender

Like asking for their choice of coffee or water—we don’t discriminate—knowing your customers’ age and gender helps you understand what sort of ‘vehicles’ they might prefer. How to get this info? Well, CRM tools are your friendly baristas, serving up these insights.

Location and Geography

Where your customers hang out tells you a lot. Are they city explorers or countryside lovers? With this knowledge, you can craft some location-specific marketing strategies. Use geo-targeted ads or social media analytics, and voila! You’re the local guide they didn’t know they needed.

Psychographic Data: Delving into Buyer Preferences and Behavior

Now that we’re past the introductions, let’s dig deeper. Psychographic data is like knowing their favorite band or their Netflix binge. It tells you ‘Why’ they do what they do.

Interests and Hobbies

Knowing their interests and hobbies lets you connect on a personal level. It’s like knowing their favorite 80s movie or if they’re bold enough to sing karaoke. Surveys and social media analytics can help you get these party conversation starters, adding a personal touch to your marketing efforts.

Buying Behavior and Preferences

This is akin to knowing if they are a dog or cat person. Understanding their buying behavior and preferences helps you anticipate their needs. Analyzing their purchase history and conducting surveys gives you these insights, letting you become the mind-reader they never thought you could be!

Technographic Data: Uncovering Technological Preferences

In the digital age, technographic data is like knowing their comfort food. It’s about understanding what technology they reach out to when they need information.

Devices and Platforms

Are they Apple loyalists or Android followers? Identifying your customers’ preferred devices and platforms ensures your marketing messages land in their comfort zone. Tools like Google Analytics are your friendly neighborhood techno-detectives, helping you gather these insights.

Online Behavior and Engagement

Knowing how they behave online is like understanding their language of memes. Monitoring website analytics and social media insights can help gather this customer data, so you can decode their digital dialect and tailor your strategies accordingly.

Behavioral Data: Tracking Customer Interactions

Behavioral data is like knowing how your customers interact with your dealership. It’s like getting a secret window into their likes and dislikes, pet peeves, and kudos.

Website Interactions

How do they navigate your website? What makes them tick, and what ticks them off? Tools like heatmaps and session recordings can help you get a sneak peek into these hidden behaviors and help you see if your UI and UX are working.

Email and Campaign Engagement

What kind of emails do they open? What links do they click? Monitoring email metrics and campaign engagement can give you these clues. Your email marketing software is like your personal decoder, breaking down these secret messages into understandable insights.

These four data types – demographic, psychographic, technographic, and behavioral – are like different lenses you can use to view your customers. When combined, they offer a comprehensive understanding of your customers and a roadmap to their hearts and minds.

In a way, it’s a map leading you to the destination of improved customer connections. Use the data hunting wisely, and the sky’s the limit.


Case Study: Deciphering the Data of a Potential Car Buyer

Alright, now that we’ve got our detective hats on, let’s work through a real-life example. We’re going to analyze the data for a potential customer who walks into our dealership – let’s call her June.

Demographic Snapshot: Who is June?

June’s a woman aged between 45-65 years. She’s happily married, has children, and her household income is north of $100K. Quite the accomplished individual! The demographic data paints a picture of June’s stage in life, giving us a broad view of her lifestyle. But it’s a bit like looking at a car’s exterior. We get a sense of the style, but we don’t yet know what’s under the hood.

Psychographic Deep Dive: Meet the Real June

To truly understand June, we need to delve into her psychographic profile. She’s grappling with health issues like unintended weight gain, diabetes, and hormonal imbalances. Health and appearance matter to her. She dreams of a healthier lifestyle, but time? Well, that’s a luxury she can’t afford.

In the evenings, June loves to unwind online, Pinterest being her digital haven. She’s a discerning customer, valuing quality over economy, whether it’s her clothes or her cars. Her fulfillment comes from her career and family, but she also cherishes her time with a close-knit group of friends.

Now, isn’t that a more comprehensive picture of June? Psychographics are like popping the hood of a car. We get to see what makes it run, its quirks, and its strengths.

Why Both Matter: A Holistic Understanding

When we look at June’s demographic and psychographic profiles together, the blurred outlines sharpen into a clear picture. It’s like having a GPS directing us to a destination rather than just knowing the general direction.

With demographics, we understand her life stage but don’t know her preferences or what drives her actions. But with psychographics in play, we know where to find her (hello, Pinterest marketing), what moves her, and what appeals to her.

We’re not just selling a car. We’re offering June a vehicle that matches her lifestyle, that embodies quality, that might provide her that bit of indulgence she values amidst her busy life.

And that, my friends, is the power of combining demographic and psychographic data. In understanding June, we can tailor an experience she’ll remember to make her feel truly seen and valued. That’s the magic of data!

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Steve Mitchell
Steve Mitchell
Steve Mitchell is a contributing writer and reporter for CBT News. He earned bachelor's degrees in Marketing and Television from the University of Texas in Austin and a Masters of Theology study from Dallas Theological Seminary in Dallas. His passion for automobiles lead him to become a creative director for automotive marketing ad agency. Most recently, he was the manager of interactive marketing for Mitsubishi Motors, NA.

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