Automotive Manufacturer improves Electric Car sales and calculates ROI with Netvibes

As a result of adding new car features recommended by Netvibes market intelligence, Luxury Auto has increased its brand loyalty and sales, achieving 5x-10x ROI.

Q: What are the top motivators for Electric Vehicle (EV) purchasers by OEM?
I: The Dashboard analyzed which traits and features of popular EV models are driving sales. Range estimations, “sporty” handling, “good value” and strong resale value were the most important factors for buyers.
O: PowerPoint presentation delivered insights to the product planning group in order to integrate these requirements into the next-generation car model, resulting in increased sales and positive ROI.

 

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Executive Summary

Netvibes Dashboards are used by a well-known automotive company, Luxury Auto [real company name changed] to answer questions and deliver actionable insights across the organization. With Netvibes, Luxury Auto is able to monitor car launches, analyze customer opinions and understand factors influencing purchasing decisions. As a result, Luxury Auto is able to continually improve car models based on real customer needs, achieving increased sales and ROI.

 

Challenge

Because Luxury Auto wanted to increase sales of its Electric Vehicle (EV) car models, the company needed to understand the different factors impacting customers’ buying decisions. They wanted to know which features made customers choose one brand or model over another, as well as the relative importance of those factors. Once Luxury had identified the potential improvements to make in its vehicles, the company needed to track ROI and understand how those changes had impacted revenues.

 

Solution

Luxury Auto’s product development team uses a variety of custom Netvibes Dashboards to discover insights into cars and to research new ideas for future models. One Dashboard focused on EVs analyzes social data online, including customer feedback, media reviews and community forums, in order to understand what people are saying about electric cars and features. The Dashboard automatically categorizes and analyzes this data to drill down into specific topics that are driving or preventing sales. 

The team discovered that different car models and brands had specific pros and cons influencing customer buying habits. For example:

  • Range estimations: A 75-mile range for EVs is most often mentioned by consumers. However, many buyers argue that EV/75 is pointless. Instead, they intend to buy a Battery Electric Vehicle, and they consider a 50-60 mile range to be appropriate for PHEVs (Plug-in Hybrid Electric Vehicles). 
  • Range performance: Chevrolet Bolt is popular with customers for meeting its range estimations in the real world.
  • Handling: Consumers are concerned that EVs do not provide the same driving experience as a combustion engine. BMW’s i3 is described as a “sporty” drive when in electric mode, and drivers still enjoy driving this EV. 
  • Resale value: A strong second-hand market is positive for first-time EV buyers. Models such as the Ford Focus Electric and Nissan Leaf offer very good value entry to the EV market.
  • Upgrade options: Customers expect range-boosting battery upgrades.

 

Results and ROI

Through this analysis, Luxury Auto identified key features important to buyers that were missing from its EV offerings. Before making the investment to add these features to next year’s model, Luxury Auto needed to calculate the expected ROI. Using the Netvibes Dashboard, they calculated ROI using two separate models.

Method 1:  Missed revenue

Luxury Auto learned that 0.11% of consumers refused to buy the EV due to its lacking a specific feature. The team calculated that if even 5% of these people could be convinced to buy the Luxury EV, that would generate an additional $1.5million in revenue for an ROI of 5x-10x. 

Method 2: Preserving Installed base

In addition to gaining new customers, Luxury Auto wanted to understand the impact the new EV features would have on its existing customers. For this analysis, 5000 Luxury Auto owners were identified in Q1. These owners kept their vehicles for an average of 6 years. Each year, approximately 15% of these owners will buy a new car, and when they do, 40% are faithful to Luxury, while 60% will buy a new car from a different brand. Luxury Auto calculated that by adding the new car feature, the brand could improve customer retention by at least 2%, resulting in a revenue increase of $4million per year. The expected ROI was 10x-20x, plus greater customer satisfaction and brand loyalty.

Luxury Auto compiled these insights from the Netvibes Dashboard into a PowerPoint presentation to be shared with the product planning group, advising everyone of the importance of the proposed design changes. Once Luxury Auto implemented these improvements into the next year’s car model, the company immediately noticed positive social feedback from customers online. Over the course of the year, the company achieved significant revenue growth and positive ROI.
 

 

Results

By using Netvibes Dashboard Intelligence, Luxury Auto benefits from the ability to analyze more types of information faster, delivering important data insights to drive decision-making across the company. Luxury Auto is able to:

  • Understand real customer needs and buying decisions.
  • Quantify the relative importance of these factors and measure impact on revenues.
  • Innovate new features that will have the greatest impact.
  • Understand emotional factors in buying decisions, such as when a feature is treated with scepticism or anxiety, or whether something is the primary motivator for the buyer versus a nice-to-have bonus.
  • Achieve competitive advantage over other automotive companies.
  • Design better cars, keep customers happy and increase overall revenues.
     

 

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