Started Sept. 15,
2015, and still
aimed to improve
using an audience
scoring system. After
shifting digital ad
budget allocation, it’s
rolled out the strategy
2 | FEBRUARY 2016 ADVERTISING AGE
THE MARKETING CHALLENGE
Toyota Netherlands had the same problem all auto
sellers do: It needed qualified leads and a way to
communicate with those potential buyers. The deal-
er group – a small division of the auto giant with
just 110 sales outlets throughout the country –
already used Facebook Custom Audience targeting
to advertise to people who have shown an interest
in its vehicles by visiting its website. But it wanted
to refine its approach to ensure it was only spend-
ing to reach the right people.
“The most important thing for us is really to get to
know the online prospects and customers
better,” said Menno Damsté, manager,
interactive communication at
Louwman and Parqui B.V. Toyota/
Lexus, The Netherlands.
What started as a two-month
test would eventually lead to a
strategic shift in digital ad budg-
et allocation and rollout of a now-
ongoing campaign to other markets.
Beginning in September 2015, the in-house
Toyota Netherlands marketing team built audience
segments to target on Facebook by categorizing or
“scoring” website visitors based on their interac-
tions and level of engagement using marketing ana-
lytics firm IgnitionOne’s technology and scoring
The algorithmic system uses information such as
how recent a site visit was, whether someone pur-
chased a Toyota in the past, site categories visited,
where people click on the site and what content is
scrolled over with a mouse, referring URL, and
monetary value of vehicles they showed interest in
to calculate an engagement score. Then the results
are displayed on a dashboard.
“This is a visualization to show our clients that it’s
not a black box,” said Stephan van den Bremer,
enterprise business development director at
For the test, IgnitionOne’s technology was embed-
ded on the Toyota.nl site in order to track users
who checked out select vehicle models and opti-
mize what content they were shown. Facebook ads
– pushing things like test drives for instance – were
then aimed at the test groups using the social site’s
Custom Audience offering.
It also informs in-person sales, Mr.
Damsté said. When someone is
deemed a potential buyer and
offered a deal, that information
is filtered to Toyota retailers
based on region, along with a
.pdf document detailing the
specs of the vehicle in which
that person expressed an inter-
est. Those leads also go
through the national site via a ful-
fillment system, and if there isn’t a
prompt follow-up from the local dealer,
an alert goes out. From there, another dealer
could get the lead.
“We have a lead management system so the nation-
al level pre-qualifies leads, then monitors them and
makes sure that leads have been contacted by the
dealer,” Mr. Damsté said.
The test was so successful Toyota Netherlands
decided to continue targeting IgnitionOne-qualified
leads with Facebook and Google ads as part of an
“It’s an always-on campaign.” Mr. Damsté said.
ADVERTISING AGE FEBRUARY 2016 | 3
I Conversion rate lift: 62%
I IgnitionOne group conversion rate:
I Control group conversion rate: 0.19%
The test brought Toyota a conversion rate lift of
62% when comparing organic conversions to sign-
ups for test drives via a website form to conver-
sions prompted by IgnitionOne lead targeting.
Targeting the IgnitionOne group led to a 0.30%
conversion rate, compared with the control group
who converted 0.19% of the time.
The test was enough to persuade Toyota
Netherlands to continue using its IgnitionOne-
fueled segments for all its Facebook ad targeting,
and later employ the system for all its Google Lists
for Remarketing targeting.
Now in 2016, Toyota Netherlands has shifted to
IgnitionOne-based targeting entirely, dropping any
standard retargeting efforts it employed in the past,
and expanding the program to at least two addition-
Don’t Settle. Toyota Netherlands already used
standard ad retargeting to reconnect with people
who visited its site in a way it deemed successful.
But the company learned it could get even better
with a more sophisticated approach.
Technology Can Enhance the Human
Touch. Car sales often require the skill of a good
salesperson, but using a data-centric approach can
complement efforts by staff.
take a test
drive, while the
mobile site lets