The More Serious Situation: A staggering amount of information & data about potential automotive buyers is being created, aggregated, matched-up, correlated and packaged to predict when a given pre-qualified consumer will buy what vehicle and when — and this data is for sale to dealers right now.
The OMG Significance of all of this: Rather than trying to understand what Google is up to or the structure of dark matter, just be ready — BIG Data is rendering BIG changes in the way dealers will be gaining new customers, selling vehicles, hiring people, and investing in systems, buying leads, and doing marketing.
Targeting Now Deadly Accurate: Not as simple as dealers or OEMs being adept at only targeting content and banner messages at so-called Internet Surfers (as the headline on an recent Automotive News article suggested).
Big Data Knows Everything: Where we go, what we do, what we think about buying or doing, what we like and what we can actually afford. That is if one has a computer and is on the Internet. Every transaction, search, click, and page landing by a consumer (that’s you and me) is being captured, correlated, categorized, and coagulated into a data file that contains the matchup of nearly every product, service, or search that we have made in a least the last year, month or even day.
Big Data is Big Business. With each passing day, it is becoming more apparent that whoever has the best data about consumer car buyer behavior and can deliver the data points almost instantly is winning and will continue to do so. More data than ever about everything is now available and for sale to the highest bidder. Massive data aggregators using banks of servers called “The Cloud” are doing new things with data that we not possible hence.
The New Lead Gen is upon us: Correlations and algorithms are enabling data mining companies to accumulate buying behavior, financial qualifications, and social standings of what used to be called “Lead Generation.” This is enabling data management companies like AMEX, the telecommunication providers, and yes —your cell phone provider to gather everything about you and what you are doing. This data is then being packaged in such a way as to assess, predict, and classify every consumer who goes to the Web to search for a new or used car or truck.
So where will you be as the Fit Hits the Shan? For now, there is really no longer a sales funnel. It is becoming apparent that Big Data is about to be regulated and reigned in, issues of Infringement of Privacy are coming, and the sky may fall on industry providers who furnish leads (but they are already probably the real Big Data providers and have yet to be so designated).
New Way of Buying the Deal: Consumers are going to be shocked when dealer sales teams deal with them in a new and different way as dealers will know all they need to know about a new car or truck buyers before that buyer, lessee, or looker gets to the dealership. The deal will be done, for all intents and purposes, when what was once a “funnel” becomes a “straw” to deliver the “Consumer & their Journey” to the dealer who just bought the deal on the Internet from Big Daddy Data.