Branding means everything in the automotive industry. What car a person drive embodies elements of their personality and world view. That’s why car shopping is not just a high-consideration purchase because of the substantial price tag: it’s an emotional experience for the consumer where they seek to balance self-image and whimsy with practicality and cost. For Suzuki Australia, their cars invoke excellent quality, high value without sacrificing the fun and playful side of life. The manufacturer operates across 90-plus dealerships, supported by a small and savvy marketing team led by General Manager - Automobile, Michael Pachota.
Suzuki Australia’s branding is solid, backed by an above-the-line campaign that cleverly uses humour to amplify their car line-up’s selling points. Online, their website pops with colour and personality, inviting visitors to explore their model range and book a test-drive. Although they were receiving an average of 5,000 unique daily visitors, they weren’t seeing strong conversions. “We relaunched our brand platform, ‘For Fun’s Sake’, driving a lot of unique visitors to our site, but we were losing them at the back end,” says Michael. “We started to think about how to communicate in a more targeted and meaningful manner, but we were in the dark and needed an automation platform to give us the resources and tools to do that.”
Also, Suzuki’s databases were scattered across different systems and Michael’s team lacked clarity regarding their leads’ integrity. Email marketing became a manual and time-consuming process, where data had to be pulled from one system and then emailed through another, with no ability to measure the outcomes.
“We were falling in terms of our below-the-line and one-to-one communications. We needed to step it up and close the loop,” says Michael. “We had a lucrative pool of prospective customers, yet no way of effectively communicating with them.”