Marketing is the mainspring of every automobile dealership. After all, marketing is the science of getting people to shop your inventory, come in and test drive your cars, and have them buy your parts and use your service departments.
Marketing persuades customers to come back again and again, and induces them to purchase sooner than they normally would. Without marketing, you lose customers and business.
Implementing a great marketing strategy can improve the chances of boosting sales for your dealership.
A winning strategy costs money, and your marketing budget might be lean right now. Read on to find out how to leverage marketing assets without breaking the bank with these tips:
- Rethink your social media strategy
- Use email marketing
- Start using video marketing
- Reach customers with your blog
- Copy the marketing leverage strategies in the Haley-Toyota case study
Tips on Leveraging Your Marketing Assets
Your marketing assets include things like email campaigns, brochures, and any promotional content that you use both offline and online to promote your dealership. If you’re not utilizing these assets the right way, you’re likely spending too much money and not getting a good ROI.
Rethink Your Social Media Strategy
Your dealership needs to have an account on all the major social media platforms like Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Pinterest, and Instagram. You want to have an omnichannel approach across all these channels to ensure the best user experience (UX) and for optimized lead generation.
You should constantly review the statistics for all content shared on these various platforms. Posting on social media can become a huge waste of time if you are not implementing the correct strategy for each platform - and if you don’t evaluate the results and make the necessary changes.
For example, maybe your dealership is having a lot of success on Facebook and Twitter but is failing at generating leads on the other platforms. Focus your energy on platforms that are working for you.
Use Email Marketing
Don’t lose faith in the benefits of generating results from email marketing.
You may think email marketing is archaic in today’s advanced world of digital marketing. However, there are 126 million active daily Twitter users and 1.62 billion on Facebook, but there are 3.9 billion daily email users worldwide.
That’s a vast number of potential customers who could be hearing about your new vehicle arrivals and great deals and discounts.
Make sure you leverage this asset the right way as you experiment with A/B Testing and are open to changing your strategy if something isn’t working, so you don’t waste valuable time and money.
Use Video Marketing Wisely
The user experience (UX) on your blog and website is directly related to the bounce rate - a high rate can negatively impact your Google SERP ranking and drives less traffic to your online content.
Be strategic when you use videos in your digital marketing campaigns. You can use videos to promote your brand, engage customers, and share the benefits of purchasing from your dealership rather than the competition.
Think with Google data shows that watching an online video influenced the purchases or shopping habits of more than 75% of auto shoppers. The following are some ideas on using video marketing wisely:
- Bring new life to blog content by creating a video for your YouTube Channel
- Create a free YouTube Channel and share service tips for vehicles
- Review new model vehicles that arrive at your lot and share their features
- Showcase pre-owned cars and share the benefits of such purchases
- Humanize your dealership and share customer or employee testimonials
- Strategically place relevant videos in your blog content to engage readers
You can share these videos on your YouTube Channel and social media. Make sure to research and use relevant keywords to improve online ranking and help your videos get found on YouTube.
Reach Customers with Your Blog
Marketing gurus like Neil Patel have used blogging to build a large following online. Now, blogging alone to generate leads and increase sales can take time.
However, when you incorporate this facet of content creation into your digital marketing strategy, you can effectively leverage marketing assets for maximum results. Integrate the following tips into your blogging strategy:
- Write high-quality, shareable content that educates the reader
- Target users who actively engage on social media for optimized exposure
- Research and use relevant keywords in H1, H2 tags, and article content
- Share links to your blog content in auto-related online communities
- Include statistics, videos, images, and infographics to enhance the UX factor
- Use Google Analytics and its various online tools to track traffic sources
Learn from the Haley-Toyota Case Study
Enhance your digital marketing strategy by learning from the Haley-Toyota Case Study, which shows how one of our clients increased sales by 30% at their dealership. This boost in sales shattered their July sales record.
The Client: Haley Toyota of Roanoke
Haley Toyota of Roanoke serves car buyers seeking new and pre-owned vehicles in the Roanoke, Salem, Lynchburg, Christiansburg, and Blacksburg, VA market areas. With their 30th anniversary coming up, they wanted to celebrate that milestone with a sale event - without spending more money.
This dealership always focuses on a customer-centric approach. They wanted to reward loyal customers and new prospects by demonstrating their strong commitment to always putting the customer first.
Haley Toyota of Roanoke partnered with J&L Marketing. They shared their vision of making a big splash with this huge anniversary event - and their two goals:
- See a major influx of both foot traffic to the dealership and website traffic
- Accomplish this goal without spending too much money
Their Twofold Challenge
As we’ve discussed in this article, that prospect can seem daunting. Consider their twofold challenge:
- Market – The automotive marketplace is flooded with similar inventory, pricing, and advertising. Our client couldn’t use ordinary “Anniversary Sale” messaging in their advertising content to rise above the competition.
If they increased their advertising dollars significantly to target local car shoppers, they could likely rise above the noise. But that was not an option.
- Seamless Strategy – An omnichannel marketing approach that leveraged existing assets and delivered a seamless UX relevant to real-time consumers would be time-consuming and involve working with too many vendors.
The potential boost in sales would not be worth the investment of time and money - and would include a steep learning curve.
Yet, with a comprehensive and sophisticated digital marketing strategy employed by our dedicated team, our client saw excellent results.
The J&L Marketing team worked strategically to promote and brand this 30th Anniversary campaign for the entire month of July. They used an omnichannel marketing approach to ensure that the dealership could interact in real-time with both current and prospective customers.
This DMS strategy effectively leveraged both offline and online data to target customers at every intent level throughout the car-buying funnel.
- Attack – With this strategy, our team identified where the highest quality traffic would come from by using online data. They studied competitors’ top-performing Google ads to determine which offers and keywords to use.
- Defend – The Dealership’s DMS data was leveraged to serve Google paid search ads to customers as they completed vehicle searches. Our client could then reach previous customers before competitors influenced them.
2. Digital Marketing Targets
Employing the right digital marketing strategy ensures that your dealership will reach the ideal target market. The following showcases whom our digital marketing targeted and why:
- Leveraging DMS Data – Our team leveraged the DMS data from the dealership within Google paid search and Gmail ads to defend against possible customer defection to the competition. This strategy alerted previous customers to news of the 30th Anniversary sales event.
- Using Polk Data – We used Polk data to identify geographic areas where there was an increased opportunity to reach a target audience. This data showed where competitors had the highest sales, where our client sold a high volume of inventory, and areas of low sales.
3. Digital Marketing Channels Used
There are a variety of digital marketing channels we could have used, such as email marketing, search engine optimization, social media marketing, content marketing, and online public relations.
We focused the bulk of our efforts on Google paid search ads, Google display ads, Google Gmail ads, YouTube Pre-Roll, and Facebook ads. The following shows how we used these channels:
- Google Paid Search Ads – We captured all search traffic and minimized customer defection by leveraging DMS data. We targeted competitor branded keywords.
Through dynamic VIN specific campaigns, we targeted make, model, and year searches. We were able to direct people to the vehicle detail page of the car they researched.
Our paid search ads stood out from our competitors' ads as we included 30th Anniversary Sale copy - and increased brand awareness.
- Google Display Ads – These ads targeted in-market Toyota consumers and specific vehicle types like compact, sedan, SUV, etc.
Dynamic VIN remarketing campaigns were used to serve relevant ads to website visitors who did not convert - and those vehicles they had shown the most interest in.
- Facebook Ads – These ads targeted conquest prospects who were in the market and searching for a Toyota. They also remarketed the dealer website to visitors who had not converted.
- Google Gmail Ads – These ads were served to the dealership’s DMS audience.
- YouTube Pre-Roll – The 30th Anniversary Sale leveraged video marketing to promote this event. It targeted both in-market and remarketing audiences. Brand awareness increased.
You can increase revenue by up to 23% when branding is consistent across all channels.
4. Highest Rated In-Market Previous Customers
J&L Marketing employs a proprietary software - Response Analysis - to isolate each marketing element down to a single variable - from over 50,000 successful sale events. This software identifies projected marketing elements that will likely produce the best results and which ones will not – so they can be removed.
When DMS data was leveraged, our analysts identified 5,000 of the highest-rated, in-market previous customers through a proprietary algorithm which relies on the following:
- Up to eight years of sales and service data
- All prior marketing communication data
5. Sale Event Support Provided
This 3-day 30th Anniversary Sale Event was scheduled for the end of the month to allow our digital marketing team ample time to generate momentum and buzz.
Leaders from Haley Toyota of Roanoke participated in the Event Success System ten days before the 3-day anniversary event. Our team hosted this online call to provide a proven, step-by-step process to help our client maximize the profit potential of the event.
The Sale Event Domination System included the following benefits:
- Response Analysis – Tracks, tests, and evaluates all marketing elements to improve what works and eliminate what doesn’t
- Data Analytics – Identifies in-market previous customers
- Proven Turn-Key Formula – For offers and hooks, sales copy, and creative
- Sale Event Marketing Funnel – Direct mail, triggered email sequences, social media assets, landing pages, on-site event coordinator, and 24/7 reporting dashboard
- The Event Success System – Total event preparation to maximize the potential of sales and profit
The Impressive Results
Through an effective partnership with the J&L Marketing team and this omnichannel approach, Haley Toyota of Roanoke achieved their goals:
- Seamless user experience
- Increased Traffic
- Boosted Sales and Profit
New car sales increased by 20%. They increased sales by 30% in July, which broke their all-time record. The dealership saw 168 car shoppers in their showroom over the course of this 3-day sale and sold 61 vehicles.
Their response rate to the omnichannel approach was 3.36%. The following showcases how their digital marketing efforts benefited from the omnichannel marketing strategy:
- 8% increase in impressions
- 25% increase in clicks
- 18% increase in conversions
- 15% increase in paid search conversions
- 100% conversion rate on YouTube
Leverage Your Marketing Assets the Right Way
If you want to leverage marketing assets so you don’t have to spend more money in order to boost sales at your dealership with similar results to Haley Toyota of Roanoke, contact us today. At J&L Marketing, we have a proven track record of helping customers improve their sales and have better results in their marketing campaigns.