Marketing Exec Leads Internet Site Panel in Discussing Price Transparency

Price negotiation for most consumers is often described as one of the most arduous parts of the purchase process, according to Joel Ewanick, managing partner of Global Automotive Systems, Inc. The former GM chief marketing officer led a panel discussion about “Vehicle Price Transparency” with four third-party website executives at the October J.D. Power Automotive Marketing Roundtable (AMR) in Las Vegas, NV. Excerpts from the panel discussion are highlighted in this post.

Moderator: Joel Ewanick, managing partner, Global Auto Systems, Inc.

 Panel Members:

Seth Berkowitz, president and COO, Edmunds.com

Larry Dominique, executive vice president, TrueCar, Inc.

Jared Rowe, President, Kelley Blue Book

Alex Vetter, senior vice president, Cars.com

Third-Party Website Leaders Define Business Models

Joel: I see that companies like yours are trying to help the consumer through the process. Can you explain what you do, what your business model is, and then we’ll start to compare and contrast?

Seth (Edmunds): “At Edmunds, we’re working through a major transition. For years, we’ve been an information and pricing authority. We probably have the largest repository of automotive information on the Internet with somewhere in the neighborhood of 3.5 million pages of content. We’ve decided that being this comprehensive encyclopedia of automotive information isn’t enough. . . We’ve decided to make car buying easier. We are going to do this by fostering trust—which is at an all-time low— between consumers and dealers.” Continue reading ›

What do U.S. Dealers Need to do to Understand Their Customers?

Editor’s Note: Deirdre Borrego, vice president and general manager of J.D. Power’s global automotive operations and Power Information Network® (PIN), presented her thoughts on how dealerships can navigate the future in an article, “U.S. Dealers: Preparing for the Future,” that was published in the October issue of AutoRetailNet, an online magazine.

Excerpts on approaching Gen Y consumers are featured in the first of two posts.

Keep Your Eye on Generation Y

Deirdre Borrego

Generation Y isn’t simply a buzzword. Gen Y consumers (born between 1977 and 1994, and who are generally the children of Baby Boomers born 1946-1964) are currently estimated to number 80 million. That is a huge retail automotive growth opportunity, surpassing both their parents’ generation and Generation X (whose members were born between 1965-1976 and number only 55 million).

Generation Y, also known as Millennials, are already starting to create a massive change in the way retail business is conducted. These consumers are the first generation to be exposed to electronic communications technology from a young age—including wireless phones at home; 500-channel cable and satellite television; cell phones; the Internet; email; social media; websites; and, most recently, smartphones—and they are completely comfortable with the hardware and technologies. Continue reading ›