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Digital Marketing for Automotive Dealerships

Posted by Zuri Stanback on December 4, 2015 at 10:11 AM

Digital marketing for auto dealersMarketing Land notes that among both Gen Y young adults and older generations, the number-one source that influences car-buying decisions is reviews on independent websites. Manufacturers' websites and media reviews also rank above the opinion of the salesperson at the dealership. Clearly, the way people shop for cars is changing, and digital marketing for automotive dealerships is now more important than ever. Here's how the automotive industry can benefit from digital.

Reaching Consumers Where They Are — Literally!

Whereas in the past, dealers had to rely mainly on commercials and flashy billboards to entice customers into their stores, today they have the added benefit of being able to reach consumers in real time right when they're in the neighborhood. As consumers continue to spend more and more time on mobile devices, it's important to reach them where they are — not only where they'll be most likely to see your message, but where they'll be the most receptive to respond to it. That means using geofencing to serve ads in social networking apps, Web browsers and other mobile applications to target consumers who are close by your dealership. You can target consumers while they are out car shopping and serve them a deal right when they're in your neighborhood.

Leveraging the Power of Rich Media Display Ads

Aside from looking at where to place your ads, you'll also want to consider the types of ads you place. Rich-media ads featuring video, audio, animation or other interactive elements are a must for reaching consumers. While simple text-based or static image ads can inform consumers about a specific car or promotion, rich-media ads give them the chance to really visualize the promotion in a way that isn't possible with other media. Pre-roll video can also be used in digital marketing for automotive dealerships as a way to attract consumers at the top of the purchase funnel and raise awareness about your brand.

Identifying Customers via Retargeting

Although digital marketing provides car dealerships with plenty of opportunities to cast a wide net, if you're is looking to attract a certain type of consumer, you can use retargeting to identify consumers who will be the most receptive to your message. For example, a Honda dealership looking to sell new-model Accords might target consumers who have previously visited its website or searched for Honda cars on other websites. The dealership could also target people searching for comparable vehicles from competitors, such as Camrys or Passats. This way, you zero in on customers who've expressed a definite interest in a product like yours.

While print media should still be included in any integrated marketing plan, going digital opens your business up to a whole new audience.

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Topics: Retargeting and Remarketing, Premium Display and Banner Ads, Mobile Optimization and Advertising, Integrated Marketing, Automotive

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