Jos van den Bergh – Renault
What drives Renault toward Brand Growth?
When it comes to buying cars, what drives the consumer to get a specific model or brand? Is it drivability, value for money, quality? According to Jos van den Bergh, Manager Marketing Communication for Renault, it’s all about design for the French car manufacturer. “Design is the main reason people buy a Renault. However, this truly varies per brand.”
Jos gives us Renault’s main KPIs for brand growth. “An important KPI is the overall opinion the consumer has of Renault. How do consumers feel about the brand and the product? And how does the overall opinion of Renault relate to competitors in the market?” According to Jos, the overall opinion of the consumer is above average compared to the market. “We have yet to get in to the Top 5, but that is our ambition in the long-term. We do think it’s possible due to our brand values.” Jos explains that Renault and their media partners monitor Renault’s brand values continuously. “We look at a set of 15 brand values which we ask our consumers about. Our most important brand values are design and easy life innovation. Other brand values are for example comfort, value for money, whether Renault is innovative and whether the consumer sees us as a leader for electric cars.” Jos tells us that Renault is the only manufacturer who has a full range of electric cars.
Renault’s most important KPI lies in conversion. “At the end of the day, everyone here works toward selling cars. So naturally, sales is our most important KPI, which we monitor daily”, Jos adds. “But, to get sales, you need interaction and first and foremost, awareness. Therefore, we monitor website- and showroom visitors and look at both unaided and aided awareness. Once people know about Renault we look at who interacts with us.” Jos explains that it’s all data-driven nowadays. “Once we gather data and have approval from our customers, we can personalize our messages. In the end, that leads to conversion and sales.”
“If you want to drive a sportscar, you can buy a BMW.”
According to Jos, it’s all about claiming a position in the market. “Comfort is still part of our DNA. A Renault Talisman is a very comfortable car with lots of gadgets that improve drivability. If comfort or design is something you’re looking for, you’ll probably buy a Renault. This contrasts with competitors who for example strictly focus on the pleasure of driving or value for money. So, if you want to drive a sportscar, you can buy a BMW and if you just want value for money, you can buy a Hyundai or a KIA. It’s all about making choices as a brand.”
Renault’s media choices are based on the model see, think, do and care. Jos: “See is based on mass media. Creating volume and generating brand awareness and brand preference. It’s important that our consumers know the brand, the models and the USP’s of the cars. Based on mass media we notice that a lot of consumers start to interact with Renault. Consumers mostly interact with us through digital media and only visit the showrooms before the final decision. Based on clicks and data we personalize banners on our website based on what models the consumer has looked at before. With the help of data, we can even personalize our messages and content to fit the consumer’s needs and situation. This has a positive effect on the conversion. For example, consumers can build their dream car on the website. All these leads get send to the preferred dealer. So, when the consumer is as far in the funnel they visit one of our showrooms, we can make them a personalized offer based on the data we have”.
Jos talks about Renault’s media mix and how it differs based on the model. “For see we use tv, radio, branded content and events. Think and do are specifically targeted towards people who are interested in our brand and interact with us. We use media such as digital and social to spread targeted communication. We notice that social media works very well. We even sell cars through Facebook. Care is based on the CRM follow-up once the consumer has bought from us. We no longer live in a time where brand preference lasts forever. So, it’s important to maintain these relationships.”
According to Jos, Renault works with multiple partners with regards to media. The most important role for Renault’s partners is building a 360-degree story for every campaign. Jos: “Our partnerships are fully integrated with our KPIs to make sure they are implemented in all our communication”. Because Renault works with multiple partners, consistency is key. “We manage the consistency of our communication by making sure we meet weekly with all our partners and agencies.”
“You need a lot of people at the top of the funnel to have people left at the bottom.”
Driving toward the future
Jos gives us his vision on where he thinks Renault is heading. “There’s an ongoing discussion in the market that we need to be more digital as a car manufacturer. What people forget is that to get conversion, you need the top of the funnel to be healthy. Mass media is something we can never step away from. You need a lot of reach and people at the top of the funnel to make sure there are still people left at the bottom. Because in the end, they are the ones who buy the cars.”