Reinventing the automotive customer experience journey
Tesla has found success in reinventing the customer experience journey. The electric vehicle startup absorbs complexity for customers and offers additional services such as charge point installation, insurance and access to supercharger stations. While Tesla seems to be a threat to more traditional OEMs, the market shows nuances and regional differences, with ample opportunity for established car brands to service customers. Car shoppers in the U.S. are keener to purchase from an established U.S.-based brand like GM or Ford (66%) than a non-U.S. brand like Mercedes, Toyota or Audi (59%) or a new auto startup like Tesla or Lucid (34%), according to research conducted by Publicis Sapient and Epsilon.
Tesla’s wins in the electric vehicle space are significant—and that’s because it’s not a car company but rather a tech company. Software and software engineering are top of mind for OEMs as they work on shifting their cultural mindset, finding new operating models and hiring new types of talent. These new ways of working and operating will help match customers’ digital expectations and prioritize a seamless customer experience. Building a car today is about much more than its engine or even engine efficiency; it’s about building a connected device that’s compatible with a constellation of other devices that consumers use daily. Furthermore, it’s also about being able to ensure that drivers can operate their car from a mobile phone and connect with charging stations and other services through a screen tap.
When someone buys a car today, the purchase is just the beginning of a new relationship between car shopper and car brand. Auto companies that transform to become tech-focused and change how they engage with customers will see a shift in what drives their earnings.