There’s nothing easy about staying competitive in the automotive industry. Local marketing can be the key to success – when it’s done right. Read on to find out how.
It seems like just yesterday local dealers could survive on TV spots with loud, fast-talking spokesmen and big, bold on-screen offers alone. Sadly, those days have faded in the rear-view mirror as consumers now browse and shop from the comfort of their home. With the bulk of their research done before they even enter a dealership – consumers typically visit just 1 or 2 dealers prior to making their big-ticket purchase.
The pressure to drive customers to increase revenue, and decrease expenses is constant. The good news? All that data on your customers and the state of the market is the key to your success. You just need the time and the expertise to dig into the data – and uncover the insights!
Working with our automotive partners across the United States, we’ve uncovered the three most common challenges they face when promoting their business – and determined the best ways to solve them and drive real growth.
1. You Need to Really Know Your Competition
You can learn a lot by truly understanding your competition. In fact, it can help you understand your own business better. Thing is, that’s easier said than done when you’re tasked with marketing a dealership. There isn’t enough time in the day to eat a proper meal, let alone go searching to get the full scoop on how the guy across the road is performing. Even when you have the data - taking the time to perform an analysis can feel overwhelming. Sound familiar?
The solution to this problem is simple: intelligence! There’s a wealth of information about your competitors around you – you just have to dig for it. Trust us, it’s worth it in the end. Here’s info that can really guide your strategy:
The state of the market
The nuances of your city or town
Market share analysis
Top-selling vehicle models by zip code
A clear view of where you’re missing out!
Use the insight on what our competitors are doing to create smart promotions. For example, if you find that your top competitor is selling 75% more sedans in a specific area than you, perhaps you should think about inventory adjustments and building a stronger presence in those zip codes. That can be achieved through customer reviews, local listings, social media campaigns, search marketing and targeted display (to name a few!)
Conversely, if your dealership is selling double the number of crossovers compared to a competitor in the past 12 months following a major branded content and search marketing push, you have evidence beyond your own year-over-year metrics to prove that your advertising dollars are well-spent!
2. Auto Dealers Struggle To Find The Right Areas Within Their Market
Knowing what’s going on in your own backyard can help you become competitive. Staying in tune with trends taking place across the market, region and even nationally, on the other hand? That can be the ace up your sleeve that really takes your game to the next level.
Being the first to jump on successful practices that have worked elsewhere before they reach your area can distinguish your business as a leader - and give consumers something unique to consider to you keep you top-of-mind when they start thinking about online research or visiting showrooms.
Here are a few key data points that give you a bird’s eye view:
Which dealers are the best sellers in any given market
Which ZIP codes generate the best sales
Which brands and vehicle models are selling well elsewhere, and which ones you might need to stock up on right away
What calls-to-action are more effective for luxury versus domestic vehicles
Armed with this knowledge, you can pinpoint dealers in your 20 Group to model yourself off of. Take notes on what elements of their marketing campaigns were most successful and try to adopt some best practices of your own. Whether that’s interesting client testimonial videos or flashy display campaigns – see what’s working for the top sellers and make it work for you.
3. Know Which Channels Can Make Your Marketing More Efficient and More Effective
Trying to figure out the best marketing solutions without any data to guide your decision-making can turn into one huge (and costly!) guessing game.
Dealership need to know exactly what will connect them to their target audiences most efficiently, and which combination of tactics and channels will help them drive in-market customer awareness and leads most successfully. Plain and simple.
Here’s where LOCALiQ AUTOMOTIVE’S combined power of supercharged insights and end-to-end marketing solutions comes in handy. With us, you can work closely alongside an industry expert who will collect and summarize key pieces of data in just a couple of days, plus build a marketing strategy informed by measured industry expertise. From there, your local marketing path becomes clear – and reaching your goals isn’t far off.
Once you know where your marketing dollars will get you the highest return – the fun part begins! Be creative with your message and imagery. Watch your audience grow far past your competitors. Get your coffee machine working overtime!
Pressed for time, and need help from some experts who can dive in and help you understand the data?