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Hybrid and electric vehicles disrupting the German auto market

While hybrid and electric vehicles have experienced a significant increase in popularity around the world, the percentage of e-cars among all new German car registrations was reported at a low 1.6% in 2017. Although this number does align with figures from the UK and France, it is still far behind the Scandinavian countries, and in particular Norway. Given that Germany is still reeling from the highly-publicised emission scandal that left the industry in turmoil, advertisers now have a unique opportunity to promote alternative energy vehicles and deal with the repercussions of the 2015 event.

Hybrid cars are strongly on the rise but Germany is currently falling behind

  • C-level executives in 43 countries identified two major trends that will shape the future (alternative energy sources such as fuel cell electric vehicles, battery and hybrid electric mobility, as well as connectivity and digitalisation leading to autonomous and self-driving cars)
  • By 2030 almost half of all globally-produced vehicles will use other energy sources than gasoline or diesel
  • Germany has been falling behind since the German automotive emission scandal, with the percentage of e-cars among all new car registrations sitting at only 1.6% in 2017

Advertisers can generate interest in electric vehicles to deal with the scandal repercussions

  • Last year Volkswagen and Microsoft announced a partnership which will shape the future of auto-mobility, marking the beginning of industry partnerships which previously had minimal overlap
  • US analysis shows new model searchers research an average of eight brands and almost half of all consumer decision journeys related to new car models take 90 days or even longer
  • Search activity increases significantly during popular auto shows when new models are revealed, suggesting advertisers should align their search campaigns along these cycles to attract early researchers of new models

How to engage with your potential AFV customers through Microsoft

  • Reach consumers with a strong interest in new and alternative energy sources for cars through dedicated campaigns
  • Ensure all relevant ad extensions are fully adopted across campaigns
  • It’s a dynamic category. Broad match enables advertisers to capture new and emerging queries
  • Adjust budget for events and seasonal peaks, typically occurring in March and September
  • Target your ads for specific audiences with bid modifiers (e.g. male, urban for car sharing) 
 
Germany may still be playing catch-up to the hybrid car revolution but the recent emission scandal has also peaked the interest of many who are looking to buy a new car. For advertisers, this puts an emphasis on remarketing as a key strategy to reach potential car buyers during a long and complex consumer decision journey. The aim should be to reach consumers with a strong interest in new and alternative energy sources for cars through dedicated campaigns, while also adjusting budgets for seasonable peaks that typically occur in March and September.

Read more and download the Microsoft Advertising Trends & Disruptors deck