R. L. Polk keep tabs on the Motor City madness. One of the oldest and largest consumer marketing firms in the US, Polk is the leading provider of marketing information and services to the auto industry. The family-owned company collects demographic and vehicle data and packages its information into a number of products, including software and online analysis tools, for use by brand managers, marketing officers, and auto dealers. It also offers information and services for the aftermarket segment, as well as business-to-business marketing tools. In addition, its Carfax unit provides vehicle history data to consumers.
Polk has operations in Australia, Canada, China, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, South Korea, Spain, the UK, and the US.
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The company's clients includes Audi, BMW, Ford, Jaguar, and General Motors.
Polk's industry leadership stems from the depth and breadth of its information: its databases cover every vehicle registered in the US and Canada, and pulling together demographics and consumer credit information with vehicle data offers its customers powerful insight into the auto buying market. Its data is used for direct marketing campaigns as well as customer loyalty and management programs. In addition, Polk regularly provides industry data to the media.
While Polk has long been a dominant player in the automotive market research segment, it has also continued to strengthen its position through acquisitions and continuous development of new products and services.
In 2013, Polk launched an enhanced version of its National Vehicle Population Profile (NVPP), continuing its long history of providing the automotive industry with a comprehensive view of the vehicles on the road in North America. Also that year, the enhanced its industry-leading data solutions with increased African American coverage and Hispanic American sub-culture insight to help automotive marketers better tailor campaigns and target messages for these fast-growing markets.
In 2013, the company entered into a strategic alliance with marketing research and data analytics firm InsightExpress, to enable Polk's vehicle data to be integrated with InsightExpress' digital advertising measurement technology, giving marketers a deeper and more robust understanding of how advertsisng exposure drives purchasing behaviors.
To expand its customer base for aftermarket demand products, in 2012, company entered into an agreement with Commercial Motor Vehicle Consulting (CMVC), for that company to operate as an authorized sales agent for the Polk's commercial aftermarket replacement demand product portfolio due to increased demand in the marketplace. CMVC focuses on new business opportunities for the portfolio, allowing Polk's aftermarket replacement demand product to be available to more aftermarket retailers, distributors, and parts makers.
Polk is owned by the family of chairman and CEO Stephen Polk, the great-grandson of the company's founder.
The company was founded by patriarch Ralph Lane Polk in 1870.