Effective Auto Dealership Marketing

Car and truck dealers have a tremendous investment in inventory and in many cases, a healthy amount of foot traffic in the form of walk ins and regular website visitors.  However, too many of them have an anemic auto dealership marketing approach.

“It is a known fact that a proactive engagement approach will create present and constant relevance.”

What Should an Auto Dealership Do?

The CAN-SPAM Act established specific rules for engagement when it came to email marketing to businesses and consumers.  However, the CAN-SPAM Act doesn’t require initiators of commercial email to get recipients’ consent before sending them commercial email.  In other words, there is no opt-in requirement.  However, too many businesses out there wrongfully assume that you cannot send emails en mass at all when in actuality you can–but you must follow certain format, procedure, and messaging requirements.  Plus, when a customer opts out you must honor the request.

Next: The Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA) governs the transmission of mass automated dialing whether they be IVR messages or SMS content.  However, TCPA does not consider manual use of telephony as part of the Act and simply asks (just as CAN-SPAM) that certain format, messaging, and procedural requirements be met.

 

Proactive vs Reactive Auto Dealership Marketing

On a recent visit to a Honda dealership, we were pleasantly greeted by an enthusiastic salesperson and an equivalently overseeing manager.  Test drive and coffee aside, a vehicle was purchased and lots and lots of documents were signed.  However, we have not received a single email or text after leaving.

“At some point someone in the marketing department needs to understand that retention marketing is real.”

The point: there is a lot of information that can be shared beyond the sale to maintain top of mind relevance such as:

  • vehicle type recalls information and updates
  • service and maintenance reminders
  • complimentary car washes
  • inventory arrivals
  • bargain sales

Outsource the marketing or get ongoing support for the in-house Team

The auto sales business is not the marketing business.  Thus, at some point the in-house marketing team needs to get some help to make effective use of CRM capabilities to effectuate increased engagement, responsiveness, relevance, and thus sales.

“Anyone can setup a website or a social profile.  The hard part is turning that into a leads generation mill.”

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