Four Tips for a Multichannel Marketing Strategy
Newspapers and TV are the traditional giants of a dealership marketing strategy. But relying solely on these two channels constricts your reach. Every year, fewer people gravitate to the traditional, and new avenues gain steam.
According to the Pew Research Center, social media sites in 2018 surpassed print newspapers as a news source for Americans for the first time, with one in five adults saying they often get news from social media. While this data is from a few years ago, it’s likely that the current numbers are even higher.
When it comes to TV, the abundance of streaming services and competition for eyeballs decreases the effectiveness of traditional TV advertising.
You have to be in the newspaper and on TV because that’s where your competition is. But you also have to consider social media, phone, email, direct mail and text messaging.
A multichannel strategy that gets your brand in front of as many people as possible will maximize your reach and campaign effectiveness. The four steps below are a great way to get started.
1Analyze your customers
Every store and brand has a different customer profile. Facebook advertising may work really well for a store in your 20 Group, but may not work as well for your target audience. Use your CRM to help you segment your customer data and run reports that identify how customers show up on your website or floor. What current channels are your best lead generators?
2 Dip your toe in the water
Once you have a basic customer profile, start adding channels and monitor the response. Pick one or two new ways of communicating and try it out for a month or two. For example, include a vanity number on your next direct mail piece and encourage customers to text you for more information. Track the texts. A large number of responses will indicate that your customers like texting, and that it's a viable channel you should use more. A note of caution: make sure to follow all FCC guidelines and regulations to avoid penalties and lawsuits.
3Tie it all together with your CRM
Your CRM should help you view, organize and analyze your marketing/advertising spend and ROI so you’re not wasting money on ineffective channels and campaigns. The best also allow you to track social media ROI in one place so you don’t have to log in and out of multiple platforms. You can also conduct a free 20-minute social media audit using Hootsuite, a social media management platform that helps you identify the best content and channels for your business.
It’s worth noting that any CRM is only as good as the process in your store. Data accuracy is vital to create targeted campaign audiences and personalized follow-up. Train and manage your staff to always update customer records and include notes, such as preferred channel of communication, that can lead to future sales.
4Get help when you need it
Many dealerships are still operating lean, but this isn’t the time to pull back on marketing. Buyers are coming back thanks to vaccines and states loosening restrictions. If you need extra hands without adding staff, consider partnering with an external Business Development Center (BDC). A good partner understands different forms of advertising, follows all regulations and is 100% dedicated to the task. An external BDC is also immediately scalable. If the market changes or you want to run several campaigns at once, a BDC can be flexible to meet your needs.
The way customers find and access information is evolving. You have to keep up or you’ll be left behind. Use these four tips to begin supplementing your traditional advertising channels with a multichannel strategy that will maximize your reach and keep you in front of customers.