Digital native young generation z consumers

Engaging Digital Native Consumers: Essential Strategies for Automotive Dealerships

Written By AE Staff

Who are Digital Natives?

The term "digital native" is often used to describe individuals who have grown up immersed in technology, typically Millennials and Generation Z—also known as Zoomers. This group is not only tech-savvy but also wields significant economic influence, with a combined purchasing power exceeding $3 trillion.

Understand Digital Natives' Shopping Preferences

Digital natives exhibit unique purchasing behaviors, heavily influenced by digital platforms. Insights from Statista reveal that social media, customer reviews, personal experiences, interactive content, and advice from peers and family shape their buying decisions. Recognizing and adapting to these influences is critical for automotive dealerships.

Young woman smiling with cell phone

Engagement Strategies for Dealerships

Dealerships must evolve to meet the expectations of this tech-oriented demographic to stay competitive and relevant. Here are key strategies to consider:

1. Expert Guidance Without Pressure

Digital natives value autonomy and extensive information when making purchases, especially significant ones like automobiles. Dealerships can enhance customer satisfaction by offering expert advice through both in-person and online interactions, helping consumers make informed decisions without feeling pressured.

2. Create Memorable First Impression Online

Since most car shopping journeys begin online, the initial digital interaction is crucial. Dealerships should strive to make this experience personal and engaging, fostering a connection that goes beyond basic contact information.

3. Optimize Digital Touchpoints

A study by CDK Global indicates that 62% of digital natives use dealership websites for information, significantly more than those who visit OEM sites. Dealerships should leverage fast, user-friendly website designs enriched with interactive features like quality videos and photos, and incorporate communication options that align with digital natives' preferences, such as live chat and text messaging.

4. Adapt to Preferred Communication Channels

Digital natives often communicate through texting and social media, rarely using traditional media such as newspapers or radio. Dealerships can capture this audience's attention through targeted digital advertising, the strategic use of hashtags, and location-based services.

5. Leverage User-Generated Content (UGC)

User-generated content plays a crucial role in influencing digital natives' purchasing decisions. Dealerships can harness the power of UGC by encouraging customers to share their experiences online, which can boost credibility and attract potential buyers.

6. Understand and Integrate Their Language

To genuinely connect with digital natives, dealerships must do more than speak their language; they need to grasp the nuances and contexts of their dialogues. Understanding their language helps your team feel more confident while building trust and stronger relations with this demographic.

Young gen-z woman buying a car
By implementing these strategies, automotive dealerships can effectively engage with digital natives, ensuring their business remains at the forefront of this pivotal consumer group's mind. This approach caters to their current needs and positions the dealership for long-term success in a rapidly evolving market.

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