Congratulations!  You’ve made it through one of the most historic trying times in the history of our industry today. COVID -19 truly showed the world what was necessary and what was not for a short amount of time. The great news was that most of our dealerships in all states were deemed essential in our Fixed Operations side of the business and that most of us figured out how to actually turn that into a record sales month when that section of our business re-started. 

Yes, It’s not the same business model that we all had 120 days ago.  As an industry that since its inception has relied on its employees to work every day, all day, approximately 350 days a year, we have found through this that we really don’t need to do that anymore to achieve the same, if not better results.

We have learned this “Digital Transition” that all industry executives have been talking about for the past 5 or so years, truly “Evolved” during this pandemic and showed all of us, what I believe is the next evolution of the Automotive Industry. Many of us for years have ignored and pushed away this change only to find out that now we are currently ‘Behind the Preverbal 8-Ball” within our competition down the street that embraced it before us and now WE are trying to play “Catch-up” to at least meet where their standards are now and how we can tactically surpass their advantage in the marketplace in the future.

So, many different terms come with this new form of operation and I thought I would take a minute to explain a couple of them and familiarize you with some of the more important ones to start to give your dealership “The Edge” it needs moving forward. Although, I am not saying that you should jump right in 100% on all of this immediately, what I DO suggest is that you; Schedule a Free Marketing Assessment from Dealer Synergy and  CO-CREATE a plan to implement some of these strategies within the next 30-60-90 days with our team.  

  1. SEO or Search Engine Optimization – the simple definition of this is the process of optimizing your website to get ORGANIC/NON-PAID Traffic from the Search results page. (Page 1 of Google/Bing is Prime Real Estate) You need to ask yourself some very important questions regarding SEO:
    1. Is my website optimized for SEO?
    2. Is it required or suggested by my OEM?
    3. Who is responsible for this?
      1. Is it my team (Marketing Department/Ad Agency or is it my website provider)
    4. How much am I paying for it monthly?
    5. What do those SEO charges include?
    6. Should I create a Blog
  2. SEM or Search Engine Marketing – This is the Digital Marketing that is considered Paid Search, a system where businesses pay Google and other Search providers like Bing to show actual ads in their search results.  

This can be facilitated a couple of different ways:

Through your dealership’s own Google AdWords account – This is the “Hub” that Google created that is described as an online advertising platform developed by Google where advertisers pay to display brief advertisements, service offerings, product listings, video content and to generate mobile application installs within the Google network. In addition to the AdWords account, you will also have access to the Keyword Planner from Google, The ability to set a budget that works for you with Google Cost and to extensively grow your business with the help from Google & help your dealership maintain that page 1 status with Google. 

  1. Dealership’s existing Advertising Agency – If you have currently an agency of record and they are not advising you on the power and strength of Digital, they may not be a right fit for your business to grow. 
  2. 3rd Party Partners – Many 3rd party partners in the Automotive Industry provide some sort of Digital Support. Many now tie within your own Google Analytics accounts so you can actually see if and how they are actually working for you along with you finally being able to justify the cost that you are spending with them. 
  3. New Strategic Digital Marketing Agencies – These are the newest forms of Advertising Agencies that all they focus on and all they engulf themselves with is your dealership’s “Digital Footprint”. They can hyper-target your existing customers, previous customers, lost customers that you look to reclaim. They can create campaigns that strategically attack your competition and show you measurable results daily, weekly, monthly and beyond. 
  4. Social Media – Many of us now have had a Facebook page or have one currently in our personal lives, but some things you need to ask yourself or members on your team are:

 

  1. Is our Facebook page a Business Page or a Personal Page?
  2. Do we (The Dealership) have 100% ownership & control of this page? (Are we an ADMIN)
  3.  Are we running Paid Facebook Targeted Digital campaigns with our current advertising in place?
  4. Are our Ad’s running on Facebook OEM Compliant? 
  5. Do we allow our dealership employees access to our page and/or do they have their own page? 
  6. Who is maintaining our Dealership’s “Brand Integrity” on our page and the employee’s pages? 
  7. What is the approval process?

Other types of Social Media that you could run campaigns on and find success in:

  1. Instagram
  2. YouTube
  3. LinkedIn
  4. Tik Tok
  5. SnapChat
  6. Twitter
  7. Reddit

 

  1. Blog Posting – What is a Blog? A Blog posting is a regularly updated website or web page, typically one run by an individual or small group, that is informal stylized. This article is meant to be a Blog post. The purpose is to:

 

  1. Informational
  2. Create content specifically to target the wants and needs of your audience. 

Many dealers utilize Blogs to create relevant material that they can use to bridge the existing customer to the new or potential customer. Some of those examples of information that can be targeted for both include:

  1.  Leasing vs. Financing – What is better?
  2. How to make sure your vehicle is ready for the Winter
  3. Vehicle purchasing doesn’t need to be scary
  4. Newest safety technology featured from your brand
  5. The Dealership Value Package Proposition (What’s that, you ask?) Contact us for more information
  6. Best day trips within driving distance (Remember, KEEP IT SOCIAL, NO HARD SELLING) 

Obviously this blog was meant to be a top line basic overview of how the advertising and marketing model has changed and continues to evolve & they’re are many more ways this can be facilitated, if you would like more information, or for a FREE Marketing Audit/Strategy Session, please don’t hesitate to reach out to our team here at Dealer Synergy to discuss your plans to grow in the future.

Dealer Synergy, located in Audubon, NJ  is the automotive industry’s premiere speaking, training, consulting, coaching accountability firm. Dealer Synergy was founded over 16 years ago and services clients globally including the United Kingdom, Guam, Dominican Republic, & the United States. For examples of it’s hosts of companies and services, please visit us at www.dealersynergy.com. Mr. Caliri is the Vice-President of Marketing & Operations at Dealer Synergy. Over his 25+ years experience in the Media and Automotive industry in Marketing he has contributed to many different 20 Groups, Mastermind Round tables & Regional Marketing Teams. Mr. Caliri was the Marketing Director of a 10 Rooftop Dealer Group in Western NY who’s yearly sales were approximately $400,000,000+.  Mr. Caliri is also a member of the American Marketing Association, The Public Relations Society of America and resides in Rochester, NY with his wife and 3 children. 

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