Nissan Teams with Amazon for Promotion That Resembles Online Car Buying

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The internet has long provided a perfectly disintermediated marketplace which has fed the dreams of auto manufacturers and consumers who have wanted for a world where car dealers didn’t have to be in the middle of their transactions. Now Nissan is teaming with Amazon for the promotion of what may be the next best thing.

For its hot new, five-door Note version of the Nissan Versa, the brand has launched a limited-time program advertising the car on a custom product page on Amazon—similar to the e-commerce giant’s standard product-detail pages. It takes site users to the Nissan USA site for more information or to move closer to a transaction. And it offers a $1,000 Amazon gift card to the first 100 buyers; further, three selected participants will be able to take delivery of a custom Amazon-“boxed” home delivery from Nissan.

Of course, a dealer will still be doing the actual selling and delivering of the vehicles. Nissan will record the deliveries to the three lucky Note winners and turn it into content the brand can use online, Phil O’Connor, senior manager of media for Nissan USA, told brandchannel.[more]

“It’s not a replacement at all for the traditional shopping experience” at a dealership “as much as it is an enhancement and attempt to capture Amazon shoppers with content that is consistent with the Amazon experience” that they’re familiar with, he said.

In fact, O’Connor said, “Our dealers love this promotion because they see this as a new way to capture traffic, provide an interesting and contextually relevant experience, and deliver to them consumers who are in the market.”

As O’Connor explained, consumers—particularly Millennials, at whom the new Note and its “Your Door to More” campaign via TV ads is aimed—”love shopping Amazon. It’s the most powerful site around. And this experience is consistent with that and will enhance the purchase experience” for Nissan shoppers.

It is true that Millennials have demonstrated a marked indifference to buying cars and have been significantly less inclined to engage in the purchasing experience, compared with previous generations. Surveys have shown one big reason is that, even more than older consumers, they disdain the traditional process of going into a dealer showroom, looking at vehicles, talking with salespeople, and potentially dickering over price and other terms.

But O’Connor insisted that the new promotion isn’t aimed at that disaffection. Instead, he said, it’s designed to demonstrate that “contextual messaging works.”

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