Monetization Strategy for Digital Retailing

Our Client

Our client is the digital retail team of a Fortune 100 leader in the auto finance sector.

Transformation Challenge

Covid-19 dramatically accelerated the need for the auto industry to amplify its digital retailing capabilities. Consumers had previously been able to buy used cars online, but when it came to new cars, they could only browse. Now, consumers wanted a seamless, “shop-to-buy” experience for new cars — one they could complete from the comfort and safety of their homes.

With a “shop” solution already underway, and partly deployed in some of its own dealerships, our client brought Thought Ensemble in to work with their digital retail team to assess their current readiness to launch and scale their finance and insurance (F&I) solution, recommend a monetization business approach for expansion to partnerships, draft a business case, and develop a comprehensive go-forward implementation roadmap.

Our Approach

We performed a bottom-up assessment and gap analysis of our client’s product delivery and management capabilities along with discovery of private label opportunities to pursue.

To align leadership around how to approach, monetize, and manage future partnerships, we guided them through a design thinking-based partner journey-mapping workshop. Simultaneously, we stood up a Thought Ensemble program management role which provided comprehensive strategic support for one of the partnership opportunities, including capacity planning and the creation of a “Pillars of Partnership” agreement that would serve as a blueprint for partnerships going forward.

Our analyses revealed resource gaps in key areas causing strain on teams, delaying the roadmap milestones necessary to reach even the first phases of their expansion goals.

In collaboration with our client, we developed a business case that described the additional resources required to optimize the current state, emphasized the financial and market opportunities that partnerships could provide, and highlighted the large opportunity costs of not investing in them. 


By combining the various facets of our analysis, our client secured additional funding to grow their headcount to address critical role gaps — allowing them to deliver an accelerated roadmap. As a result, a strategic approach for white-label and private label partnerships has been carefully designed and prepped for implementation. We continue to support our client, performing essential roles to operationalize partner development, onboarding, and retention. 

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