For Digital Marketing Professionals

Automotive Segment Report

National College Students Survey

by David Bunzel / 2013

Why Read This Report

There are more than 20 million college students in the United States, with an estimated four million who graduate each year.  This demographic, with potentially high disposable income, presents a future market of nearly $50 billion per year for companies in the automobile industry.  Establishing affinity with college students will depend on active engagement through emerging social and online media platforms.  Understanding the trends regarding digital media, mobility, and shifting brand preferences, will be essential in establishing effective marketing strategies to support this dynamic segment.

Additional Information


The College Market

The Survey 

Defining Social Media Platforms 

Brands and Digital Media Engagement

Report Highlights and Sound Bites 

  • Six Social Media Platforms That Count for College Students
  • Other Platforms
  • Social Media Platform Trends
  • Social Media Platform Metrics

Automobile Category and Digital Media 

  • Grad Cars
  • Luxury Cars

College Students and Automobile Brand Digital Media Platforms 

Leading Digital Brands for College Students

  • Brand Preference
  • Digital Media Engagement
  • Brand Digital Media Activity

DMIX Top 100 Digital Brands for College Students, 2012 (1-50)

DMIX Top 100 Digital Brands for College Students, 2012 (51-100)

Leading Digital Automobile Brands for College Students 

Automobile Brands That “Get It”

  • Automotive–Grad Cars
  • Automotive–Luxury Cars

Converting Survey Results to Actionable Data 

  • Quantifying Digital Media


Appendix A Survey Questions 

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Photos Courtesy of UW-Madison Archives

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