Connect with your cardholders now, before the dealers drive away with all the loans.
Despite doom-and-gloom reports about recessions and continued micro-chip production delays, S&P Global Mobility recently announced global an expected increase in automotive sales for 2023. Similarly, TransUnion anticipates nearly a five percent increase in automotive loans in the coming year.
But while all this speculation points to positive moves for consumers and the economy, the truth is inflation still sits at over seven percent for the past year. Federal interest rate levels are still at an all-time high, with the Fed announcing yet another hike at their final meeting of the year this December.
Some financial experts still consider a US recession far more likely than the so-called “soft landing” policymakers are hoping to achieve. After all, it remains to be seen if interest rate manipulation can really affect wages and job openings while keeping unemployment numbers low.
But, in a market that still largely lacks reliable public transportation, there are going to be people that need cars. So, how can financial institutions help guide their account holders to the right price point and loan?
Why don’t more people just call their financial institution?
Underproduction and high demand for transportation have seen prices for new and used vehicles rise at rapid rates. At the same time, automotive loan delinquency has risen over twenty-two percent year-over-year. It’s not hard to realize that part of the issue might be that consumers are still looking at the types of vehicles they could have afforded before prices went sky-high.
Then, rather than contacting their primary bank or credit union for loans or advice, they are sitting in the auto dealership’s finance office waiting for their credit to be scraped by a dozen of the location’s preferred financial partners. But the dealer doesn’t care about their ability to make payments or their long-term financial wellness. All they care about is making an immediate sale, collecting their commission, or improving their bottom line.
How can credit unions and banks combat the high-pressure sales environment and help their account holders make better automotive decisions? The trick is to begin the conversation well before they walk through the dealership door.
Communication is the key
Automobiles are a big deal for most account holders. And consumers don’t necessarily pay that much attention to interest-rate advertisements. They might, however, pay attention to warnings and a bit of education.
Worded carefully, mobile notifications, newsletter headlines, and special app alerts could generate more interest and position primary institutions as good resources for auto loans. Discussing the increase in defaults, the percentage auto prices have increased, and how to determine how much car an account holder can really afford are key ways to help members and customers make better decisions.
Including fast and easy ways to get in touch with real people for real financial and loan advice is an essential part of this strategy. Whether it is through live chat, over the phone, at the ITM, or in person, make sure every communication has a clear call-to-action that puts account holders in touch.
Your branch & ATM locator can help
Innovative technology like Wave 2’s interactive branch and ATM locator can help your financial institution in its auto loan outreach. With clear, configurable notifications and easy integration of scheduling apps like bookafy, Acuity Scheduling, or Coconut Software, the right locator can provide cohesive technology and convenience for account holders looking for more information.
Taking that one step further, we can actually create a custom indirect lending dealer locator for you, which can help your cardholders connect with your partner dealerships, and can even send them there with your preferred pre-approved lending in hand and ready to go!
With proper communication (and the right locator tool), financial institutions can help account holders get their wheels while avoiding financial disaster. The Wave2 Branch and ATM locator is a key partner in the process. Contact us today!
Jason Green, Co-Founder
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