Digital marketing has changed over the years, especially in the automotive industry. The strategies used before, including television and magazine ads, were enough to lure customers in and drive sales. However, technology has advanced over the years to include social media. Most consumers if not all, are influenced by social media platforms. For this reason, you need to take advantage of these tools to reach as many customers as possible. Remember your competitors are taking advantage of social media that can be accessed through any device. In this article, we are going to discuss marketing for dealerships.
Digital Car Dealer Marketing Tools
This guide will show you all the trends in car dealership marketing and all the strategies you can use to your advantage. Before we delve much into car sales marketing, you need to understand what digital marketing is first.
A study by Digital Air Strike revealed that customers who are looking to buy vehicles preferred social networks over a dealership website when choosing the right dealership to visit. A similar study on the role of social media in the auto industry revealed that one out of four car buyers communicates through social media on car purchases. These studies showed that social media is indeed a crucial part of car marketing.
Consumers spend time every day on social media apps such as Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, LinkedIn, Tumbler and Snapchat for entertainment or to pass the time. As a business owner, you need to take advantage of these free platforms to market and sell your products. Otherwise, you will miss out on a large platform that could steer your business to great heights.
Creating social media accounts is pretty easy, and it will not take you more than 20 minutes. However, gaining social media followers will take a little bit longer, so you need to be patient. You need to share useful content, and with time, things will start going the right way. If you need to know when the best time to post is you can use social analytics tools like this one from Diib:
Pay Per Click (PPC)
Pay per Click is an advertising tool that helps your company rank higher on search engines results page(SERPs) as soon as possible after the campaign. PPC is as simple as sponsored listings on search engines platforms. When using PPC, you must learn more about your customers, what they need then create ads that are in line with those needs.
A video is more than said words. This old saying is proof that a video is much more valuable in marketing than printed words. For you to connect with your customer or target market, you need to create videos showing your product and services and how they work. Creating visual images is an excellent effort at building a large following of interested parties since they know about the product. If you include your video strategy with marketing skills, you are going to increase your sales because of the large number of customers that you will reach. Also, people share videos widely online, especially if it has good content. Creating videos is not hard, especially with the video editing skills and technology that is available. All you have to do is know what you want to share and create a video about it.
FACTS: Video is the second most-used content type on social media used to increase audience engagement. In fact, LIVE video is the third most-used social media marketing tactic. (HubSpot)
Search Engine Optimization (SEO)
SEO is an excellent way of getting visitors into your website. You need to build your website in a way that visitors can easily find it when they type car sales marketing or other related keywords. Follow the rules of SEO, and your website will rank higher on search engines. Make sure to track your SEO ranking, for example:
(Image Credit: Neil Patel)
Email marketing is an excellent way to promote your product and service and drive sales. It is a great tool to market your car. Email marketing involves collecting email addresses of multiple people, including the potential customers who have visited your dealer shop then send differently or the same message to them. The goal of the tool is to pass your message without seeming like you are intruding on other people.
Tips to Drive Sales
Now that you have looked at the tools, you need to understand all the tips that could help you in marketing and ultimately drive sales. Here is all the information and strategies you need to learn for car dealerships.
Create a Provoking Website
The vast majority of potential customers for cars will visit your website to check for the vehicles before visiting your dealership. Your website is your business image and that means you have to provide an excellent impression to attract customers. You must create a website with relevant content that captures your dealerships and everything you have to offer. It must also be functional; otherwise, leads cannot research your inventory. It would help if you also made it mobile responsive for potential customers to access it through their phones. You want to ensure that you build a brand that customers can trust and rely on. For this reason, the design of the website should be professional. Test if your website is mobile responsive using tools like Google’s Mobile Friendly Test, for example:
You will be interested
(Image Credit: Search Engine Roundtable)
Please take note of every lead that comes your way as it shows that they are interested in the cars you are selling. Ensure that you have an online chat where you can engage with the customers and be ready to provide the right information depending on what they need. Since the work may be too much, ensure you have a salesperson for the job—someone who can respond to every text and question from the potential customer. A designated salesperson for your website should be ready to respond on time and update your inventory.
It would help if you also learned infographic, which is understanding that customers like visuals when visiting a dealership website. Always remember customers will click on a piece of information if it is presented visually.
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Video marketing is simply using video to promote and share your products and services with potential customers. The art also involves increasing engagements on all your digital and social media sites that educate your consumers. As a car dealership owner, you should know the benefits of video commercials for used car dealership marketing. If you’ve watched TV, you’ve probably come across quirky video commercials. Ensure that you add in some funny and memorable moments that can capture the attention of the viewer. Keep in mind that the goal is to create content that will have a long-lasting effect on the mind of the potential customer.
A report in 2017 showed that video tactic is among the top marketing tactics as it is likely to create awareness compared to other means of marketing. In fact, from 2018, the tactic was transformed from one singular marketing tactic to a business strategy. All the teams involved in marketing in the dealership should act in an actionable, intentional and measurable way to reach consumers. Videos also help in how salespeople connect with potential buyers.
FACT: 84% of people say that they’ve been convinced to buy a product or service by watching a brand’s video. (Hubspot)
Before you start filming any video of your car dealership, you need to come up with a plan for creating the video. You should know the purpose of the video and how you would like it to serve you and your customers. If there are a lot of key players in this stage, you need to come up with a questionnaire using either Google Forms or SurveyMonkey and share it with the rest of the team. By doing this, you will be simplifying the work since everyone is going to be answering the same questions.
During the planning stage, you should also take note of your targeted audience as this will help you on how to craft the perfect video content.
CRM for Used Car Dealership Marketing
Customer Relationship Management (CRM) software is an essential software that every car dealership should have. CRM serves two purposes; one is to maintain everything in one place as the leads through each stage of the sales cycle. It also automates follow up activities that will help your business maintain touch with the customers.
The best thing about the current CRM is that it can be accessed from any device since it functions in the cloud. Also, a good CRM will store all the essential information about your customers and that will be good for your team as they can ace it whenever possible.
CRM will help your business personalize each follow-up lead from the potential customer view of the vehicle they are interested in. This will then help you set up a way you can respond and possibly encourage them to purchase the car. Ensure all your staff understand how to use CRM and use the software consistently; otherwise, they are not going to make sales.
Partner with Other Close Businesses
You need to partner with other local businesses, particularly those that have the same customer base, if you want to drive more sales and also gain potential customers. This is due to the fact that as you stay connected with the other businesses and build a good rapport, they will likely encourage customers to buy vehicles from you. Here is an example of a beneficial partnership:
People share information, particularly if the product or service is good. Knowing this, you should encourage your sales team to be kind and polite with other close businesses.
Keep in mind that partnering with other businesses is also building close ties with the community and supporting them. Since you are selling cars, you could partner with the local car wash business, and they will provide a promotional post to their customers about your dealership. You could also feature each other on your website.
Take Care of Your Reputation
Your reputation matters a lot, and it will determine whether you can use sale vehicles or not from your dealership. How you treat a customer will determine whether they spend time in your dealership or not. A good reputation is a good marketing technique that you should never forget. Remember that buying a car is a big deal for most customers and the majority of them rely on reviews from other customers. If one of them experienced bad treatment from your dealership, they are likely going to share it with potential customers.
Good treatment will create a long-lasting impression on any potential customer. So focus on this, and you will be smiling to the bank. Also, ensure that you monitor your reviews in all the platforms as a part of your digital marketing. Once you have gone through the reviews, make sure you respond politely and in-kind, especially for the negative reviews. This is because people will be reading the reviews, and any negative response from you will be met by negativity from other potential customers. Keep in mind that not everyone is going to like you even if you try your best to be positive in your work. If there is a bad review, you can try to respond. However, if the feedback is not met well, you can ignore it.
You need to make use of search engine optimization(SEO) and pay per click(PPC). This is crucial, particularly if you have spotted customers that take their time to search and check for the specification of car models from your website. You must lure them into your sales funnel whenever you spot this.
PPC helps you create campaigns and trigger an ad whenever a customer searches for a car model and design. Please take advantage of the keyword features to the headline of the ad that reflects the model they searched for.
SEO, on the other hand, helps your site rank higher on search engines. It would help if you made the content of your website specific to what the customer is looking for. An easy way to do this is by focusing on what the customer is looking for and what car models and design you have in your dealership. Keep in mind that, inbound links, website content, social media signals, will influence the SEO rankings.
When a person wants to buy a vehicle, they are going to do a lot of research concerning the vehicle and where they can get the vehicle. Consequently, you may find lots of visitors to your website without any concrete action. Therefore, ensure that you have a specified ad in line with what the customer is looking for. You could also start a blog as an auto dealer marketing strategy. Once you have started the blog, you could post relevant content as this will help you attract customers to your site. Ensure you optimize it if you want to generate more sales.
We hope that you found this article useful.
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Take Advantage of Social Media
Social media is a great tool that can boost your car sales only if you know how to use it. Social media sites such as Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and the likes play a major role in influencing the decisions of a car buyer. If you integrate all the social media sites, you can make it one of the most useful marketing strategies. You can start by targeting potential customers who are on Facebook. Place ads on your Facebook page that will target customers who have visited the page to check for the vehicles. Ensure the ads are specific to vehicles that the customers are searching for. For instance:
(Image Credit: We Are BIONIC)
Target more millennials on Instagram. A recent survey by Facebook showed that most millennials are fond of Instagram more than Facebook. Instagram, which can be easily accessed through a mobile phone, is a good platform for sharing pictures and videos of your life. You can easily create visuals of the cars and let the consumer’s picture themselves driving the vehicle. Also, work your way through Instagram and ensure that you also don’t forget YouTube, which is a good place to market the vehicle. A report by force marketing reported that 84% of customers are eager to watch videos when they intend to purchase a vehicle.
Social media tools allow you to tell a story and share the experiences of the vehicles you are selling. Also, ensure you take note of all the reviews left behind on each social media app. These reviews can guide you on what you should focus on and what you need to change. Make sure to thank the good reviews and acknowledge the bad reviews, for example:
(Image Credit: Widewail)
Use the Right Media
Make sure you use the right media to reach your targeted clients. Studies have shown that in some areas, particularly the south consumers, still prefer using print, radio and even TV instead of the more modern means of marketing. This is true, particularly if your dealership is targeting the much older generations. However, reports show that millennials prefer online means such as social media to research on vehicles before visiting the car dealership. For this reason, you need to collect as much information as possible concerning your local area then you can know the right channels to use.
Ask the Experts
If all else fails, you can ask for help from the experts, especially if you are new in the car dealership business. A small business may be easy to manage. However, when it comes to marketing tactics, you need to broaden your horizons, which is why you will need the help of people who have the knowledge and the expertise to tackle the issues. You can find several digital marketing experts, including auto sales marketing experts.
Diib®: Helping to Drive Your Car Dealer Marketing!
Marketing is an important aspect of your business, particularly when you want to increase sales. You need to understand all the tools that you can use in auto dealer marketing before embarking on all the strategies. Incorporating the above ideas will help you in your auto sales marketing for you to drive sales. Additionally, partnering with Diib will give you up-to-date metrics on all aspects of your marketing campaign. This will allow you to adjust and perfect even the smallest aspects of your website and ads.
Here are some of the features of our User Dashboard that set us apart from the competition:
- Keyword, backlink, and indexing monitoring and tracking tools
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Below are five ideas to help get more customers for your dealership:
- Utilize social media and post frequently.
- Create PPC (Pay Per Click) advertisements.
- Partner with another local company that has similar values as you.
- Create a referral program and reward any referrals.
- Go to and/or sponsor community events.
When thinking about online marketing for your car dealership the biggest key is to utilize SEO strategies. This means you need to do your keyword research and use long-tail keywords, make sure you create lasting links, and have a quick loading speed. These things will help you rank higher in the search engines and have higher traffic.
Here are a few examples of online marketing:
- SEO (Search Engine Optimization)
- SEM (Search Engine Management
- SMM (Social Media Marketing)
- PPC (Pay Per Click Advertising)
- Email Marketing
- Content Marketing
Online marketing is profitable for car dealerships. The main reason for this is because you can measure it. Also, most people are online several hours a day checking social media. Because of this you should be utilizing PPC advertisements and SEO strategies.
These two online marketing strategies are the best. The first is social media platforms such as Facebook and LinkedIn. This is because social media posts are easy to share and spread the word of your business. The second online marketing strategy is to use SEO (search engine optimization) and PPC (pay per click advertisements) together. This will help you rank higher on the search engine and gain more traffic.