The automotive industry is certainly experiencing some interesting trends right now, but there is one thing we know for sure. The summer selling season is quickly approaching, and you need to be ready to capture potential customers over the next 3 to 4 months. While it’s true summer has some selling lulls as pockets of family vacations hit, it is still one of the busiest times for car dealerships. To help make sure your dealership is prepared, here are some tips for the automotive summer selling season!
Evaluate your Digital Advertising Presence
As you gear up for the summer selling season, it’s a good idea to sit down and evaluate your current automotive digital marketing presence. Now is when most dealerships start to ramp up to cover the increase in online research being done by consumers. So, your PPC spend might not go quite as far as it did during the winter months, and now is the time to look at your budget and what you might need to shift or add to keep an aggressive dominant digital presence. You might want to consider adding in some conquest campaigns to try to capture customers who are interested in competitor makes or dealerships. Search retargeting is a great way to conquest in-market customers.
Ask yourself (or your agency) the following questions when evaluating your advertising:
- What is currently working?
- Should we increase our budget on what’s currently working?
- How are we combatting comparison shopping?
- What are our competitors doing?
- What does our geographic area look like in the summer? (Do traffic patterns or shopping behaviors change?)
- How are we conquesting from our competitors?
Don’t be Afraid to be Bold in the Summer
When the factory comes out with great incentives and programs, it’s a good idea to mirror what they do. Remember that it takes 24 touch points before making a purchase. Mirroring the factory helps create that synergy and reach those touch points faster. However, if the manufacturer doesn’t produce something compelling for the month, don’t be afraid to go out on your own and create a really bold promotion. Use bright colors and fun creative but be sure to keep it clean and professional. And, of course, if needed, you’ll want to run it through compliance as well.
You also want to get your promotions out there quickly. Don’t wait until the 10th of the month to put pricing up. Just because the second half of the month tends to be busier doesn’t mean the research starts in the second half of the month. These customers are online and decided between trim levels and choosing between you and your competitor. You don’t want to be the one without pricing which can greatly impact a buying decision.
Be Strategic, and put a Plan in Place
Heavy selling times call for a plan! Being delayed or not having a solid marketing plan in place can cause your dealership to lose momentum during these heavy traffic months. So, get with your automotive marketing agency, or schedule meetings with your vendors and review the strategy for the selling season. At Digital to Dealer, we are always on top of our game plan when it comes to planning out the marketing. This way our D2D team knows exactly what is coming up and so does everyone at our dealerships. This can really help things go smoothly and help keep everyone on track to what is happening and upcoming. If your agency doesn’t currently do this, we recommend you suggest it for periods like summer, Black Friday and Year End sales. Take a look at our previous blogs for tips on advertising during Black Friday and Year End.
If you’d like some help getting ready for the summer selling season, give us a call at 877-958-4524 or contact us today!
Christine has spent the last 13 years strategizing, executing, and optimizing digital campaigns. She is certified in a variety of digital tactics including SEO, SEM, Social Media, Display Advertising, Email Marketing and Mobile Advertising and has been published several times on PRDaily.com. She has hosted digital trainings, been a guest lecturer for Graduate classes, and has spoken at the Digital Dealer conference. Outside of the office, Christine is a roller derby coach and also teaches Digital Marketing at William Paterson University.
For more information on how D2D can help, feel free to reach out at firstname.lastname@example.org