Auto Trader is widening its mobile strategy beyond car searching apps with the launch of a monthly ‘glossy’ iPad magazine next month.
Called Ignition, the editorially-led publication will cost £1.49 and is a clear indication the classifieds brand is seeking to keep in touch with customers beyond the six week window most will be in market for a new car.
Nick Gee, Mobile Director of Auto Trader told the Mobile Marketing Magazine Live event this week in London that just over a third of its traffic (35 per cent), some 2.83m monthly users, is now ‘non-desktop’. Typically those downloading a smartphone app, or accessing the brands mobile site, will engage with the brand many times in the typical six week window when they are looking to buy or sell a vehicle.
These multiple visits equate to an average of five and half hours accessing Auto Trader in which, in total, 30m mobile searches and 40m advertising views per month, each up from 5m two years ago.
With such massive engagement with the brand through the mobile channel, Auto Trader is keen, Gee explains, to make the brand front of mind when customers think about motoring and not only when they are buying or selling a car.
“Mobile is proving a massive channel for us but we normally only have people for a six week window from when they start and finish the process of buying or selling a car,” he says.
“We’re taking a very different approach with ignition, it’s unique. It’s about keeping the brand fresh and in front of people throughout the year with a monthly magazine that isn’t just about buying and buying cars, there’s lot of high quality motoring editorial in there.”
A very quick glimpse at the first edition, due to go on sale in a month, showed features on motor racing as well as in-depth reviews of cars.
The brand has also been working on the smartphone side of its mobile strategy. It recently launched a ‘save and go’ feature which, for logged in users, allows searches and favourite models to be saved and accessed again on any other device.
This was deemed important because the brand’s experience shows customers become more mobile as their search for a new car progresses. The first stages of research are often carried out on a desktop or tablet before a user starts accessing the brand via a smartphone while out viewing cars.