We live in a digital age, and the shopping and buying habits of consumers reflect that. The auto industry has been no exception. Car buyers have taken to the internet for a fair deal of their car buying needs, and have gone as far as to purchase new vehicles online, rather than from a showroom.
With this trend set to become more common as time goes on, dealerships would be wise to brush up on some of the latest online marketing tactics. By doing so, dealerships will be able to increase their visibility in the region and ultimately sell more cars as a result.
Invest In Automotive CRM Software
The first step in creating and managing a dealership’s digital marketing should be to acquire a customer relations management (CRM) software. Automotive CRM is the medium through which dealers and salespeople will be able to control everything from customer communication, business analytics, to website management
To put it simply, if a dealership wants to run an efficient and organized marketing campaign of any form, their best chance for success is with a strong CRM tool.
Like any other purchase, dealers should research their options and find an auto CRM that best suits what their team is looking for. There are certain features that they should be keeping an eye out for though. A good CRM will have an intuitive mobile-friendly design, allowing both the customer and the employees to access its features with ease from the palm of their hand.
The right CRM will also allow dealers to customize their website to look as professional and inviting as possible. After all, a dealership’s website is often a customer’s first impression of the business. Beyond that, dealerships need to gauge their employee’s unique needs in order to understand what features to be searching for.
Some CRMs can provide a hundred different capabilities, but many of those capabilities will be of little relevance to most dealerships. Others will only offer basic functions, effectively wasting a dealer’s time and money in some instances. If a dealership hopes to fully harness the potential of a CRMs design for the benefit of their business, they’ll need to make certain they are purchasing the right one.
Properly Train the Staff
Depending on the size of the dealership, it is usually a good idea to have a specific employee who is responsible for the digital marketing efforts of the company. With large nationwide dealerships, that duty can be assigned to a pre-existing marketing department, a new hire, etc.
However, with smaller independent dealerships that lack the resources of their conglomerate counterparts, the duties of digital marketing may have to be split among a number of people.
In either case, it is also a good idea to have the dealership’s sales team trained in the basics of CRM marketing tools. The more people that are capable of operating the dealerships marketing features the better. Sales staff will typically view such a requirement as a career builder, allowing them to further diversify what they can provide to the dealership.
The more knowledgeable a dealership becomes with the marketing features of their CRM, the better their marketing becomes, and the higher their car sales go.
Utilize the Communication Features
The communication features of auto CRM are arguably the most important aspects of the overall software, at least as it relates to marketing. CRM software compiles all of the clients the dealership has worked with, both past and present, and lets dealers remain in contact with them all through various means.
Customizable email campaigns can be sent out in mass, informing customers of new deals, changes in inventory, and general information. For a higher rate of response, SMS messages can be sent out carrying this information as well.
By staying in touch with customers in this manner, dealers will be able to forge a lasting relationship with many of them, increase their number of repeat customers, and sell more cars.
Targeted Marketing Campaigns
Certain auto CRM software also have the ability to assist dealerships in generating leads for potential customers. Dealers are given the power to specify the parameters that the CRM will use in finding these leads, such as an area’s demographics or vehicle interest.
After a dealer has entered the parameters, they simply sit back and watch the new leads filter in so that they may begin making contact with interested prospects. The simplicity of such a marketing campaign makes any dealership capable of leveraging this feature.
The CarDog CRM software has been making waves in the automotive industry for that very reason. It has allowed independent dealerships the opportunity to conduct marketing campaigns that they otherwise wouldn’t have the means or knowledge to do.
Competing against the national chains is a daunting task, so equipping a dealership with the power of the CarDog CRM provides a crucial leg up on the competition. For a better understanding of what CarDog can do, dealers should visit the website and review the full extent of the CRMs capabilities.