Competition in the auto lending industry is fierce. Consumers have more options than ever when it comes to securing auto loans with great rates — and they are shopping around actively. With fintechs on the rise, gone are the days when consumers would automatically go to their bank or credit union for an auto loan. In fact, from 2016 to 2018 just two percent of consumers originated their auto loan at their primary financial institution.[1]

In light of all the options consumers have for buying, leasing, financing and re-financing, how do financial institutions deliver a compelling message?

Financial institutions have to assemble the best differentiated offer in the most appealing way if they want to be selected amid all those options. Getting there, however, starts with applying these nine principles.

  1. Stand out by cutting through mailbox, inbox clutter. From the postal box to the inbox, we’re all inundated with mail these days. Consider how to make your message catch your prospect’s attention.
  2. Show how you make the lending/approval process easy. It’s no secret that consumers dislike the auto purchase process. Secure their business by making the lending process quick and hassle free.
  3. Call out your competitive rate offer. Did I mention consumers have tons of options? You can interrupt rate-shopping activity by leading with a competitive rate offer they won’t be able to resist.
  4. Make it urgent with an offer end date. This helps encourage the consumer to take action quickly, not just file your offer away (where it’s likely to be forgotten!).
  5. Emphasize key benefits and product features. Make your piece easily scannable so the consumer can easily see what makes your product the one that fits their needs.
  6. Keep it readable to keep prospects engaged. If the copy looks too dense or too repetitive, they’ll move on to the next piece of paper or email.
  7. Leverage your brand to strengthen your value proposition. Sixty-four percent of consumers feel their financial institution has their best interests in mind, confirming that your brand is an important part of your value proposition — it reminds the consumer that they already know your financial institution and what it stands for.[2]
  8. Use a strong, clear call to action. Don’t make consumers have to search for how to take advantage of your offer (because they probably won’t search at all!). Tell them exactly what to do.
  9. Offer options for response channels. Utilize a multichannel response strategy for best results. Phone, email, web — be wherever your consumers are.

Consider these elements essential for creating compelling auto lending direct marketing that captures the reader’s attention and moves them along in the decision making process.

Ready to level up your auto lending marketing? You’ll want to check out “Trends in Auto Lending” for more actions financial institutions can take to counter industry trends and challenges and boost auto lending.


[1]Javelin, Winning the Auto Lending Game: Building a Digital Bridge to Borrowers, July 2018.

[2] Mintel, The US Banking Experience, February 2019.