Telematics as CRM Tool Staff

Updated · Sep 25, 2001

GartnerG2, a research division of advisory firm Gartner, Inc., released a new report, “Telematics Services: An Audience Builder, Not a Quick Buck,” that advises automakers to shift their focus regarding telematics from a short-term revenue opportunity to a critical customer relationship management (CRM) tool.

“The true value of telematics for automakers and telematics services providers is the potential to create a unique customer relationship management strategy,” said Thilo Koslowski, GartnerG2 senior analyst.

Remote vehicle diagnostics and personalized, location-based services are the telematics applications that will most meet consumer demand. “Remote vehicle diagnostics will be the most successful type of telematics application to exploit CRM opportunities in the short term. Substantial revenue from telematics services can only be realized if the industry begins to develop location-specific, personalized telematics packages that center on customer preferences and ‘learn’ from the customer’s behavior,” said Koslowski.

Koslowski predicts that consumers may lack understanding of the capabilities of available and future telematics applications such as remote vehicle diagnostics. A possible remedy is for strategic industry players to direct their energies toward informative marketing initiatives that can be combined with existing promotional campaigns to improve consumer knowledge.

The report also emphasizes the important role of telematics in providing a return on investment in the form of improved customer satisfaction and acquisition, ultimately resulting in increased market share. These applications will provide significant long-term results in a competitive auto market, while delay due to limited profit expectation will allow competitors to gain a lead in customer focus.

Additionally, in a survey of sample of online households that own a vehicle, 55 percent also revealed that personalized, location-based point-of-interest services are important.

Stamford, Conn.-based Gartner, Inc. consists of Gartner Research, Gartner Consulting, Gartner Measurement and Gartner Events, employing 4,600 associates, including 1,400 research analysts and consultants, in more than 80 locations worldwide.

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