Who buys a car during a pandemic?

3 - 4 min Read

Someone who needs one, that’s who. And who is that?

Is it Bob who just turned fifty and wants to buy that Mustang he’s dreamed about since he saw Peggy Sue blast by with Biff in a 67 Classic?  

Definitely not. During a pandemic, Bob has other things on his mind. He’s not thinking about what he wants. His mind is absolutely on what he needs for himself and his loved ones.

He’s a bit freaked out and having trouble thinking straight. He just loaded up on toilet paper and doesn’t even know why. 

But deep down, without even thinking about it, job, food, shelter, and safety are at the top of his list. These are not only needs, but they are also urgent needs and each day, conscious or not he looks for ways of securing them.

He probably hasn’t thought of it but a car is a component of safety. It also supports other needs: job, procuring food, and essential appointments.

Bob, and all of us for that matter, forget how much we depend on our cars. When it’s in the shop overnight, we remember. And when we pick it up the next day, who hasn’t felt a sense of gratitude toward their car? It’s so useful! It helps us every day! And in a crisis, it’s ten times that!

Let’s get to know car buyer personas during a pandemic.


He/she needs to get a vehicle asap. Why?

Any one of these is enough to spur them to buy now.

  • They fear to ride public transit

  • The trains, buses, or other modes of transportation are not running when they need it

  • They need a way to get out of Dodge (sorry for the pun) if it comes to that

  • Their current vehicle is not reliable

  • That want a dealer to give them a quick solution; help with choosing and quick financing. Driving away makes them happy.

Calmer Calvin

He/she needs a vehicle within the next two to four weeks. For whatever reason, they still have time to make their decision. Calmer Calvin will take more time to make a decision and therefore shop around.

  • Same reasons as A but not as urgent

  • They need a different kind of vehicle; bigger, tougher. They want to feel prepared.

  • They were planning to buy a car within the next six months and given the state of things, they feel they should do it now to be prepared.

  • They want to find a decent deal from a trustworthy source. Desperate dealers/sales people make them nervous.

Mamma Bear

  • They are buying the vehicle for a family member to help them to prepare.

  • They’re spending beyond their means for the sake of loved ones. They want a dealer who understands their situation and will get them the best deal on the most reliable vehicle.

Good marketing helps connect people with the things they need and want. Many people don’t want to think about what is coming because it’s depressing and causes fear and anxiety. But to prepare, we must think, we must plan, and most of all we must prepare as best we can for as many scenarios as we can.

As a business, you can help your community prepare. You sell vehicles that people need during this crisis. Do not close your doors. Do not stop communicating/marketing. Your message must be loud and clear: we are here to help you! Ditch the ads for the party cars and the new 2020s with all the new options and luxuries - those are just going to be ignored, or worse, offensive.

Put together an offer that speaks to their current mindset which is focused on safety and preparedness. Be sure that the offer clearly demonstrates you are doing everything humanly possible (i.e. the sweetest offer you can muster) to help them get the vehicle they need right now.

The above buyer personas need your help to get through this. You have an essential component of their safety. Help them prepare by reminding them how to be safe. And remind them to bring their vehicle in for a service tune-up.

Are You Cutting Your Marketing Expenses During the Pandemic?

Good move! 

Step 1: Order a FREE marketing audit for a clear picture of your current spending.

Step 2: Receive a FREE consult on how to reduce and sharpen your marketing spend with an emphasis on strategies during a depressed economy. 

Step 3: Walk away paying less for a customer and secure in the knowledge you have the best strategy to weather the current crisis and beyond.