From Renault to Acura, today's leading auto retailers are paving the route towards a more seamless and connected buying experience by leveraging social media engagement via Instagram, Twitter and more

For today’s consumers, the discovery process is more likely to take place within the context of a social media feed or a third-party website than on a brand’s homepage or in a store. This has forced brands in all categories to rethink how they engage with consumers at the top of the funnel.

Accordingly, automotive brands are responding by creating interactive marketing content that reaches potential buyers where they are online. As detailed in PSFK's Automotive CX Debrief, here's how leading auto names are encouraging customers to discover their vehicles in a fun, engaging way:

Renault Italia Tokyo Stories
Automotive brand Renault Italia has enabled Italian consumers to purchase a limited-edition version of its Captur SUV via Instagram Stories and Facebook Messenger. After viewing ‘Tokyo Stories’ its series of anime-style Instagram Stories, consumers can connect with a chatbot version of one of the characters, who can help them pre-order one of the 100 SUVs available through Facebook Messenger.

MINI USA “Tweet To Test Drive”
Automotive brand MINI USA has partnered with social network Twitter to allow potential car buyers in San Francisco and Los Angeles to schedule a test drive of its MINI Countryman model via tweet. Customers tweet #MINIonDemand to the account @MINIUSA in order to receive a link to sign up for a free test drive. After entering their information, a MINI representative will arrive at their door with the vehicle at their desired time.

Acura ILX Instagram Stories
Automotive brand Acura created an Instagram-based vehicle generator to let fans create their own personalized 2019 ILX sedan. They can visit the @Acura Instagram account and click on the brand’s Story to launch the customizer, which will allow them to place virtual stickers of various exterior and interior elements, like wheels and accessories, onto a car model to fit their preferences. Acura partnered with the GIF generator Giphy to create GIFs that can be added to these custom stories as well.

Leveraging social media to capture consumers where they already are is just one way that car makers are reinventing the automotive discovery and purchasing experience for a mobile- and digital-first audience. For more innovation in all things auto retail, download PSFK's Automotive CX Debrief

Lead image: stock photos from Gorodenkoff/Shutterstock