What’s the Buzz at Automotive Ad Agencies?
There’s a buzz in the air and it’s not Buzz Lightyear. What’s the buzz about? Digital! Questions abound beginning with what does an integrated digital plan look like and how much should I spend. It’s become very clear if dealers want to connect with the ever increasing digital customer you’re going to need to spend more in this arena. That’s the advice of Martin Sorrell, chief executive of WPP. “Don’t just do digital because you can,” he said. “You must do it because it is integrated. As a dealer you have to use digital to augment the sales process.” Sorrell said he is seeing signs that automotive brands are increasing their online marketing budgets this year.
He said WPP’s research shows 93 percent of prospective buyers compare vehicles online before taking a car for a test drive, using third-party and automaker Web sites. But dealers only spend 2 percent of their ad budgets on Internet display ads. We are in a business environment that operates 24/7. You have to expand your thinking as it relates to digital marketing. The future of digital involves mobile applications, social media, social forums and integrated media.
Research says only one in five consumers start their search for a car at a dealers website. To gain market share you’re going to have to connect with these customers before your competitors. Most dealers can do mass media in their sleep. It’s the dealer who integrates it with digital who is going to dominate. When you see how all the pieces integrate it’s very exciting. The dealership blog ties to twitter and Facebook. Key search terms from your blog increase the ranking of your website. You build a powerful social network that has far extending fingers into the market place.
SEO program drives your website, blog, Facebook and twitter pages toward page one of selected key words. Specials on your website tie to your mass media. Mass media push traffic to your website. Targeted banner ads connect with in market shoppers and drive them to special landing pages. Text messages promote these special events.