Auto OEMs or “Original Equipment Manufacturers” are the official and genuine parts created directly by the vehicle’s maker; however, some in the automotive industry have taken to referring to car companies themselves as OEMs. Like any company, each OEM has their own guidelines they must follow from start to finish. Sometimes following these requirements will make or break your dealership when looking to receive co-op funds from your OEM. Read on to learn more about some of the most common OEM requirements.
The first place you will usually find information about a dealer is on their website. Did you know that many OEMs require their dealers to use a particular website or a short list of websites for their digital storefront? From here, OEMs can link in and automatically update manufacture information seamlessly and your advertising agency can then update your dealership’s individual campaigns. One of the most common websites used by OEMs is dealer.com. Users can customize their websites based on templates, upload their inventory and more. These OEM selected websites ensure that brands stay within their digital storefront requirements.
Like any big-named company, OEMs are particular about sticking to their manufacturers’ style guides to ensure consistency within their brand, while strengthening brand image. The most important areas for OEMs usually include the use of logos, fonts, color pallets, and like you just read about – websites. To help ensure advertising is compliant within requirements, many OEMs have a pre-approval process which enables dealers to submit before they run any creative or campaigns. If what is submitted meets the OEM requires, the dealership then receives their co-op funds. Brands like Cadillac even provide website audit questionnaires to ensure a Cadillac dealer’s website meets all the requirements they look for on the dealer’s website to be compliant.
You’ve seen the Summer or Holiday sales event campaigns that run throughout the year, while these campaigns change often, some OEMs, like Nissan, require you to use their manufacturer campaign in order to receive co-op funds. While other brands, like Chevrolet and GMC, will release campaigns, but not require you to use them. You also come upon situations with OEMs, like Stellantis, that will develop an umbrella campaign combined for all their brands in addition to individual brand campaigns. When this happens, they usually only require you to use one or the other, but rarely both. To find if your OEM is requiring a particular event each month, you can visit the manufacture’s asset website and download assets from there.
Vehicle Pricing Programs
A dealership is ultimately a business that has the right to sell a company’s product while also using the company’s name. Somewhere along the buying process, OEMs must find a way to ensure dealers don’t take advantage of customers and eliminate unfair vehicle pricing. Many OEMs have developed programs that require dealerships to submit pricing before they’re allowed to advertise a vehicle. Nissan has their “Minimum Advertised Price (MAP) Guidelines” to create consistency in pricing their vehicles. If these guidelines are not followed, dealers will receive strikes against them and risk the loss of funds or even be subject to chargebacks.
While it’s no surprise that OEMs have requirements when it comes to advertising, the level of severity varies from one manufacturer to another. The areas we discussed above are the most common areas you’ll find requirements for, but always check with your OEM beforehand. Not sure where to start? Digital to Dealer Direct has years of experience with OEMs across the board. If you have any questions about what you read or are looking for more assistance in your advertising, contact us today!
Kristen has 11 years of experience within the creative side of advertising as an Art Director and Photographer. She is multi-faceted in her experiences and skills in both traditional and digital spaces, primarily for automotive marketing.