Digital marketing is a vital part of any business’ advertising strategy, especially for car dealerships. It is a tool to help you create first-generation leads, which have a closing rate of 25-40%. Traditionally, dealerships rely heavily on third-party leads which have anywhere from a 4-7% closing rate. Digital marketing is an incredible tool, but it can be mishandled and poorly utilized. The following tips can help your business minimize the most common mistakes firms, and companies make when they enter into the world of digital marketing.
1. Failure to Target the Right Audience – One of the biggest mistakes firms and businesses make is targeting a broad audience rather than utilizing one of the best aspects of the digital platform: the ability to customize and tailor your message. Make sure when you are marketing your dealership that you know the market you’re in, the audience you’re looking for, and you know how to speak to them. Targeting the right audience and knowing how to talk to them is crucial to your success.
2. Undervaluing Mobile – Internet usage on mobile devices like tablets and cell phones moved up to 62 percent of all digital time spent overall by consumers. It has become the most dominant way to access the Internet, and it is something you need to value as much as a traditional desktop. Make sure your website is built for mobile platforms and does not lag on them, ensure your marketing tools are developed to be as fluid on a desktop as it would be on a tablet. Undervaluing these platforms can undo your campaigns quickly.
3. Failing to do Any A/B Testing – Testing out various philosophies and approaches to your campaigns is the best way to determine which strategies work and which don’t work. Experimenting with multiple ads is crucial in an ultra-competitive digital landscape. A mistake so many firms and businesses make is being too careful and conservative about testing out different campaigns and not wanting to spend the money or time on it. You never know what works or know how to improve upon an idea without experimenting. Make sure you are always testing things out and throwing ideas against the wall.
4. Not Having Clear Goals for Your Campaign – You will not and can not know how to create a successful campaign if you do not have goals for what you want it to be and how you want to go about achieving it. Be aware of what you are looking to accomplish with your campaigns, be it whetting appetites for a significant sale, trying to get younger drivers to buy a car, or increasing sales as a whole. Different targets require different marketing approaches, don’t go into a campaign blindly.
5. Failing to Employ A Consumer-Centric Approach – The best way to attract a customer to a campaign and your business is to be empathetic and relate to where they are coming from. When you step into a customer’s shoes and understand what their issues are and what they are looking for in a product or a service, you understand how to reach them. Sales are about building relationships, and car dealers know that better than anyone. Build a relationship with your consumers through your digital marketing and watch your campaign thrive.
6. Do Not Write Off E-Mail Marketing – You may feel like pushing promotions via email is a mistake or would upset your customers, but in fact, it is quite the opposite. A recent marketing survey revealed that 91 percent of adults in the U.S. enjoy getting promotional emails from companies they have done business with in the past, 86 percent of those respondents preferred monthly emails while 61 percent would like weekly emails. The point is that if a customer has done business with you before – and we know selling cars tends to involve having repeat customers – they are willing to accept and might even enjoy getting marketing campaigns from you. They may seem like the digital age’s version of snail mail, but email is still widely used chiefly by the professionals you are looking to sell to; don’t take it for granted.
7. Not Measuring Your Results – Digital marketing offers you the tools to measure your ads and see what kind of attention and numbers they generate. Pay attention to your numbers and take advantage of the metrics and measurements because they can help you in your campaigns. Your results are always going to be in flux, and your campaign’s success depends on how much you pay attention to the numbers and adapt to them.
8. Sending Automated Direct Messages on Twitter – Businesses and firms make this mistake a lot. Creating impersonal and gimmicky robot-direct messages (DMs) and sending them out. There are a few issues with this. Firstly, it is tacky and unprofessional. Secondly, these robotic DMs can at times generate and send themselves out multiple times if not controlled by a human being, which could annoy your customers and make them unfollow you on Twitter. Keep it personal, keep it human and you will succeed.
9. Buying Social Media Followers – People are savvier than ever about social media, and they can tell when a company seems to have a lot of “friends”. People do not like companies that look like they’ve bought fans, it screams of desperation and is not very transparent. Transparency is crucial in today’s day and age, especially for businesses. Do not start off on the wrong foot with hypercritical and supremely attuned social media users by having more followers than would seem standard on your page. If you let your page and social media campaigns build organic followings, you will be rewarded.
10. Speaking of Social Media…Don’t Be Anti-Social! – So often a business uses social media to broadcast their message but not to interact with customers and users. The beauty of the platform is the ability for companies to communicate with their consumers and to develop a relationship. Creating a social media page and campaign but failing to utilize it by refusing to engage directly with customers is a waste of the platform. Present your business, broadcast your message but, do not forget to be social with the consumer.
11. Failing to Communicate With Your Sales Team – Sometimes in your zeal to be a smart and bold marketer you may forget to be in communication with the one department that is as invested and affected by these new tools as any, your sales department. Your sales team is going to be as knowledgeable about what works and does not work for customers as the digital marketing firm you hired. In fact, getting your marketing firm and sales team to work together and enjoy working with each other could make your campaigns pop.
Digital marketing is both the present and the future, and figuring out how to excel at it is key to ensuring your business can market successfully in this day and age. Mishandling the management of this marketing or falling into common mistakes that many firms and companies fall into is common. These eleven tips can help minimize errors and create a more informed advertising strategy.