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Targeting for Auto Dealers: Connected TV/OTT vs. Cable – And the Winner Is!

Written by Beth Walter, Sr. Product Manager – Digital Marketing

April 28, 2021

By 2022, 55.1% of Americans will have cut the cord. That means that over half of all of the people in the United States of America will be streaming their TV through an app, like Sling or Roku, on a device connected to the internet. Make no mistake about it – the pandemic put this trend into overdrive.

From a marketing perspective, Connected TV/OTT offers dealerships something that traditional cable has never been able to offer.  The holy grail of “in-market” targetability. That’s right, CTV/OTT offers dealers the chance to target in-market shoppers for both Sales and Service.

How, you ask?

By definition, CTV/OTT users are utilizing the same internet to visit websites and conduct searches as they are using to watch TV, regardless of whether or not they are watching on a Smart TV, a laptop, a tablet or a phone.

For example, let’s say your Oil Change light comes on in your car three miles before you get home.  You come inside, grab your laptop and start searching on Google for “Oil change near me” and maybe visit a Jiffy Lube and your local dealership website to look for coupons and compare prices. Sounds like a reasonable thing to do, right?

The next day is Saturday and you are cord cutter, so you log into Sling and start watching “Million Dollar Listing: NY” using the same internet that you used to look for oil changes the day before.

When you started looking for oil changes and at websites that offer oil changes, you were immediately put in the targeting bucket of “in-market for an oil change” and you will likely be shown a commercial for your local Jiffy Lube or the service department at your local dealership.  It’s that simple.

It works for new and used cars as well.  Being in the automotive industry, I can personally attest to this. I spend many hours online looking at dealership websites.  Guess what kind of commercials I see when I watch Hulu? You guessed it.

Only 2-3% of the American public is in the market for a vehicle at any given time, yet dealers are still “broadcasting” their message to everyone who watches a particular station, like Discovery, vs. “narrowcasting” to cord cutters who have shown that they are generally interested in your product through their online behavior.

From a service perspective, the targeting can be broken down to an even more granular level: batteries, brakes, oil changes, tires.

You can target by zip code as well, you are not locked into a predefined “Cable Zone” that, many times, leads to quite a bit of wasteful spending.

A decent CT/OTT buy can start as low as $2,500, so next time you are looking to advertise on TV, peel off a few dollars for CTV/OTT and “narrowcast” to in-market prospects.

Contact your AutoPoint Account Manager today to learn more about AutoPoint Digital Marketing or connect with us today!

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