The times, they are a changin’.
The First Step To Getting More Customers!
We Know What Works
The pace of innovation in automotive engineering has been blistering in the past couple of decades. However, from a marketing standpoint, many dealerships have been stuck in a rut.
In comparison to other high tech industries, automotive as a whole is sorely lagging behind. In the competitive landscape of automotive marketing, you need every advantage to not only stay in the game, but to thrive.
Reaching potential customers across the entire buyer’s journey is becoming more and more difficult. How can auto dealers in today’s market compete?
There are several tactics that can get you started down the right path when planning out a great marketing strategy. First, think about categorizing activities into different phases, or buckets. If we strip away all the marketing jargon, there are four areas where most businesses focus energy into getting and keeping customers.
Stages Of The Marketing Funnel
Awareness is when you take a customer from being completely unaware of your product or service to aware that it exists
Consideration is where customers enter a relationship with your business by inquiring about your product or service and doing research of their own.
Decision is when the customer decides to make the purchase.
Retention is getting current/previous customers to come back for repeat purchases.
Get People Interested
Let’s break these four areas down a little bit more. What activities and strategies can we put in these different buckets when it comes to automotive marketing?
The Awareness Phase is one of the most important parts of the marketing funnel when it comes to automotive. This is your first impression, and you have to make it count. The auto industry is crowded, and there are a lot of other dealerships vying for a customer’s attention with their own vehicles and services, not to mention countless news outlets and entertainment sources. With the amount of content that people are subjected to on a daily basis, a potential customer’s attention may only be yours for a couple of seconds before they move on to something else. It’s absolutely crucial that your business stands out in this stage. Catching someone’s attention can mean the difference between a loyal, repeat customer and someone lost to your competition.
When potential customers enter the Consideration Phase, it is very important to supply them with the information they need in order to make a decision. Having essential information listed on your website that customers are looking for when shopping is imperative. Followup is also important after those potential customers have browsed vehicles on your website. Utilizing retargeting techniques will help you stay top of mind as they look to make a decision on their next vehicle purchase.
Get People To Act
And lastly, the Retention Phase. Healthy follow-up sales processes and excellent service are your best friends here. Email and direct mail are particularly powerful activities to engage in after a sale. A monthly newsletter can keep your brand top-of-mind in customers’ lives when their next automotive need arises. Direct mail pieces for major holiday sales events and service coupons can also help incentivise people for return visits and give them something to share with friends who are in need of service or a new vehicle.