By November 2013, the BMW i brand dedicated to sustainable development of the German manufacturer, must formalize the launch of these two electric models: the coupe concept i3 and i8 concept spyder. These cars promise to combine innovation, environmental sensitivity and hedonism.
BMW: an eco-responsible company
BMW has been working for years to improve automotive technology. The first electric attempt of the brand was in 1972. Aware of the many changes in our planet, such as global warming, depletion of natural resources and urbanization, the BMW Group is working on its social responsibility. For this reason the BMW i brand was conceived with the perspective of creating new innovative and inspiring cars. (1)
Laure Grégoire-Braems, Marketing Strategy supervisor, Renault
Cyril Forget, Media Analyst for Communicatons Director of models & brands at Renault
Sophie Benkemoun and Hélène Duvoux-Mauguet, strategic planners at Publicis Conseil
Maria de Saint Roman, Strategic Director at OMD
Elisabeth Tran, Insight Director at OMD
Stéphanie Duhamel, international advertising sales director and Carole Barkatz, marketing strategy director at aufeminin.com
20th December 2011
Agence L / Womenology What percentage of your consumers and shoppers are female?
Renault – OMD – Publicis Conseil
In the studies that we have available to us and that are based on the main driver of the car (i.e. the registered keeper of the vehicle), 1/3 of new car buyers are women. In the small car segments (Twingo, Clio, etc.), this reaches 50%.
But these studies tend to underestimate the weight of women as secondary drivers (i.e. not the registered keeper of the vehicle), such as mothers, for example.
A new jewel dedicated to women: the Twingo Mauboussin.
Mauboussin has once again broken the codes of the jewellery world by partnering up with the world famous car manufacturer.
On Valentine’s Day 2012, Renault released a special edition of their essential Twingo. The initiative is part of a new marketing approach that targets women by using co-branding. It should be noted that this special series Twingo is not the first for women. Indeed, in November 2010, Renault released the limited edition Miss Sixty.
Womenology and Agence L, a communications agency specialising in the female market have teamed up to lead a study on “Male/Female differences: from the perception of advertising messages to purchasing behaviour”.
As part of this study, Agence L and Womenology interviewed managers from major brands from all sectors (automotive, banking, convenience goods, beauty, telecommunications, etc.) in order to gather together the insights and business practices of each of these brands:
- What impact does the evolution of women’s position in society have on the brand’s business?
- Has the brand identified perceptual differences between men and women in relation to their communication messages?
- Does the brand take into account the differences between men and women in terms of their purchasing behaviour?
Read on for the first interview led by Marie-Estelle Wittersheim from Agence L and Benjamin Smadja from the aufeminin.com Group. Interview n°1: Gilles Quetel, Advertising and Events Manager at TOYOTAFRANCE 6th October 2011
Agence L / Womenology Have you noticed, over the last few years, a change in women’s involvement when it comes to decision-making for new car purchases?
Toyota is quite a masculine brand which established itself in France with 4x4s, and at the time 4x4s were very masculine. So over time we’ve brought out other more feminine models. Today, 42% of Toyota’s customers are women.
And little by little we’re also starting to have women in the sales network. They’re still the minority, but we know that our customers appreciate being listened to, informed and served by a saleswoman.
These days, women are in the driving seat: they use their cars just as much as men do, they like to choose the model by themselves and they know exactly what they want. And it’s not a fantasy! In fact, 4,460 women took part in the car survey throughout July. So, women at the wheel… is their determination taking a turn in a new direction?
“I DON’T NEED ANYBODY”
It’s a fact, women are revved up about cars nowadays. The proof: 41% of European women now buy their cars on their own. Women have become as privileged as men when it comes to being targeted in advertisements or information campaigns.
Aufeminin.com, in partnership with Auto Plus, produced a study about European women’s likes and dislikes in terms of cars. The results: plenty of differences between the different countries studied.
On the Mediterranean side, more Italian and Spanish women prefer buying new cars while in Germany and France, women prefer used cars. Women in all countries were highly involved in purchasing decisions, with only a small minority of women answering that their opinions were not taken into account.
The internet is by far the most used source of information, though word of mouth is also decently high, being taken into account in 40% of decisions . In terms of purchasing criteria, German women were more likely to take into account price as a main factor, while in other countries design was seen as more important. To read more about the results of the study, head over to the blog.
Women are getting more involved in buying cars, especially in the decision to buy a second one as it is principally used for family needs. Price is by far the largest decision-making factor, with half of women listing it as their top preoccupation; surprisingly, environmental concerns are even more important than design or brand.
Though more and more women are using the internet to get information about cars, a majority wouldn’t buy a car online without trying it first. The key challenge in advertising is to increase the amount and durability of communication with women, as sometimes more pressing needs like money override established preferences.
Women’s decisions ultimately exhibit a certain passionate rationality, so even targeted ad campaigns may sometimes not be the most effective tool.
An IFOP/L’Automobile Club survey found three large axes of difference between men and women in relation to driving habits.
First: civic spirit. Women are more prudent at the wheel, by driving on average more slowly than men and consistently flash their turn signals more.
They also care more about how driving affects the environment. One third of women will go without AC, and almost half have actually reduced their driving to reduce their carbon footprint.
Finally, men are much more ready to spend money on their cars—about double the amount than women; in couples, the same holds true, with women on average having less responsibility about financial decisions in regards to buying a car.
A great example of nuanced marketing to women, Kia’s new ad “The Arrival” shows a woman excelling in traditionally masculine activities—playing golf, and driving a Kia SUV—while men stand in the background with mouths wide open in disbelief.
The woman? Michelle Wie, who at 21 has achieved enormous success in the traditionally male-dominated sport of golf. Kia here is portraying itself as a brand for those who choose to affirm their talents and who excel in their chosen profession, regardless of sex, and regardless of archaic traditions.
What really works in the ad is the ability to find themes both women and men will enjoy, without alienating either sex with overdone stereotypes.