While OEMS have made some inroads in the services space, they are still vying for business models that are profitable and scalable in the long term. Audi’s concierge-based car rental service, Silvercar by Audi, is one mobility service that has succeeded in test markets due to reasonable rates, an app-based reservation system and fleet of well-equipped silver Audi A4s and Q5s. Additionally, platform-based companies like Sixt and Fair.com have entered the automotive market along with existing platforms like Zipcar in the U.S., offering user-friendly apps and subscription services for vehicle rentals, car sharing, ride-hailing and leasing. Alyssa Altman, senior vice president, transportation and mobility, Americas, advises that OEMs focus on what customers expect, and then exceed those expectations. She says, “Customers are looking for flexibility and there are several new players entering the market to meet this need. OEMs have to catch up in the services space in order to maintain market share as well as the connection to the customer.”
Once in-person channels are operational, pre-sales, sales, after-sales, used car sales and mobility services across online and offline channels must be integrated to provide a frictionless customer experience. At the same time, OEMs are facing cost-cutting measures internally, increasing the importance of efficiency and better decision making. In order to spur growth with less resources over time, OEMs must lean on data and analytics to inform targeted investments in activities, content and channels across the customer buying journey.
One way to achieve this is through a customer data platform (CDP) to collect, store and unify customer information in order to:
- Impart deeper customer insights fast enough to outperform broad-scale marketing
- Enable an omnichannel experience while maintaining data privacy
- Infuse customer-centricity throughout teams, departments and channels
By combining their customer relationship management (CRM) platforms, data collection systems and analytics tools under one CDP, OEMs will have access to a 360-degree view of their customers where every customer interaction and touchpoint is informed by and generates customer intent. The conventional focus on sales transactions will shift to a focus on experience and ultimately customer lifetime value.