BIA Advisory Services estimates that automotive dealers, local dealer associations, and manufacturers will spend approximately $11.3 billion on local advertising in 2019. This ad spend represents 75 percent of the $15.1 billion auto vertical, which makes auto dealers the largest of the five sub-verticals that comprise the overall auto vertical.
As in past years, traditional media will receive the greatest share of the ad spend, followed by online ad spending. For broadcast TV, the auto vertical will be the top spenders in 2019 in local. Auto dealers and manufacturers are projected to increase their use of digital channels significantly over the next four years, adding $324 million annually from 2019 to 2023.
“Businesses within the automotive vertical still rely heavily on traditional media, over-the-air television in particular, to get their message across to audiences,” said Dr. Mark Fratrik, SVP and chief economist BIA Advisory Services. “Our research shows that automotive is one of largest category spenders in TV advertising. Digital advertising is growing steadily and faster than before.”
“Don’t discount TV as a media channel for driving auto sales while digital continues to grow,” continued Fratrik. “Dealers and their local associations are aligning their marketing strategies to targeting today’s auto buyers that are using a mix of media like TV and radio along with digital-review sites, local dealer websites, search engines and social media to educate themselves during their buying journey. Ad sellers who understand and sell value and targeted cross-platform advertising will be very successful.”
The report also examines media’s impact on how consumers search for, purchase and maintain automobiles, as well as how consumer behavior affects marketing and media spend.