Light vehicle sales hit record levels in 2016, led by a shift in consumer demand for light trucks (SUVs and pickup trucks). The seventh straight year of new vehicle sales gains represented almost 2 million cars and light trucks.
The luxury vehicle market also had an excellent year with almost every brand reporting sales gains in 2016. Automotive consultant Dennis Desrosiers, attributes luxury automakers’ dramatic sales gains to increased demand from Baby Boomers with disposable income. “Boomers have worked hard all their lives,” DesRosiers said. “They’re retiring in record numbers. The kids are gone, the college costs are gone, the housing costs are paid for and they’re treating themselves to vehicles. Nice vehicles.”
Newspapers are the most effective medium to reach Baby Boomers, who report newspapers as their top media influence at all stages of the buying process. The 2016 presentation from Newspapers Canada, Newspaper Media Drive Automotive Sales, explores the role of various media in the automotive path-to-purchase. The study finds that deals/offers and dealerships are the top factors in the final purchase decision for Boomers, reinforcing the need to engage with them in printed newspapers as well as online.
Newspapers proved to be the number one trigger for driving Boomers to auto dealer websites and although Boomers are less likely overall to visit dealer websites, reaching them in that final stage (purchase decision) is critical.