Manufacturer marketing or any cookie-cutter, templated, marketing, like manufacturer marketing is really bad at getting customers into your service department. Unfortunately, it IS great at another thing, making your dealership blend in with every dealership in your area. Which as you may know, is the kiss of death when it comes to effective marketing.
So Why is Manufacturer Marketing so Bad?
• Much of manufacturer marketing is untrackable. Not being able to track how a marketing effort is performing is almost as bad as not marketing at all. For all you know, you could just be blindly throwing money out the window and getting no real results. It’s shocking this still exists in a “what have you done for me lately” industry.
How can you improve next month if you have no idea of what’s working and what isn’t? OP codes are only as accurate as the person entering them in. Which is how manufacturer marketing is tracked many times.
• Manufacturer marketing doesn’t differentiate your dealership. A huge problem with manufacturer’s marketing is that it’s cookie cutter, one-size-fits-all, boiler plate, or however you want to put it. The point is, your dealership’s marketing is going to look exactly like every single other dealership that sells your make of car. How is a customer supposed to notice you when you’re offering the exact same thing every other dealership is offering?
• Manufacturer marketing looks like junk mail. Quality with marketing is key; unfortunately most, if not all, of manufacturer’s marketing looks and feels like junk mail. This point dovetails in with the last one: if it looks and feels like junk mail, it’s going to blend in with the junk mail and most likely not even be noticed. By producing quality marketing, not only will it stick out to your customers, but it’s going to stick around.
What’s the Alternative to Manufacturer’s Marketing?
Sticking with the status quo, cookie cutter or manufacturer marketing is harming your service department’s performance – there’s no question about that. It’s for this reason that many dealerships are seeking out alternative methods for handling their marketing. Where are they finding these alternative methods and how do they know they will work? Independent automotive direct marketing companies (like us) can only survive if they effectively make their client’s dealership stand out from the rest of the market. Unlike the manufacturer marketing, their whole business model revolves around marketing successfully. To be frank, manufacturer’s bank on you taking the easy route and opting into their manufacturer marketing programs simply because it’s profitable for them.
Think about it, they’re force-feeding their entire distribution network the same canned crap over and over. It has to make them a mint, all while leaving you twisting in the wind.
Think I’m Blowing Smoke? Read This:
“In the past, we were using Ford’s manufacturer marketing and we actually paid quite a bit for it. It didn’t work for us, at best we’d see a 2% return. Their mail looked like junk mail and was very cookie cutter. There are 6 other Ford dealerships in our zone and our manufacturer marketing looked exactly like theirs, but the biggest problem was we couldn’t track the marketing. We switched to Pulse and from the first mail drop it was a huge success. We’re seeing anywhere from 8-15% response rate depending on the zip code. We see checks from their service checkbook program in here every day and our customers absolutely love them. From the moment I saw their checkbooks I knew it was a way to differentiate ourselves, the quality is incredible. I couldn’t be any happier with Pulse Mail Ninjas.” – Sharon Walker Greenway Ford, Orlando Florida.
You can hear it straight from her on video.
What is the True Cost of Not Creating a Buying Preference with Manufacturer Marketing?
The answer to this question can vary greatly dealership to dealership. The answer that holds true for every dealership though is that the cost of missing the mark with marketing and losing out on potential service customers in today’s market far outweighs the investment costs of unique marketing from a company like Pulse. Is there risk stepping outside of your comfort zone and ditching the cookie cutter manufacturer’s marketing? You bet there is, but there’s always risk involved with change. Ask yourself this? What’s riskier? Taking a chance on setting yourself apart from your competition in an effort to dominate your market… or continuing to do the same stuff your competition is doing and praying that fate will smile upon your dealership and deliver greater profitability? The answer to that question should be clear.
How The Pulse Mail Ninjas Faciliate Market Domination Using Checkbooks with PassChecks Technology
• 100% Trackable – It’s important that you’re able to track the success of any marketing campaign. With our barcode system, not only is tracking 100% accurate & pure it’s extremely simplified.
• High Quality Checkbooks – When a customer receives our checkbooks, it feels substantial, it feels like something worth keeping. It’s a lot more than a throwaway postcard. Not only that, but they’re durable and for good reason. You want your customers using these all year long… they need to be durable for that to happen.
• Digital & Physical Coupons – People forget things all the time, even substantial high-quality checkbooks for car service. It’s for this reason that our PassChecks® Technology allows for your customers to have all their checks in digital format on their smartphone. As people rarely forget their phone, this eliminates most situations in which your customer might skip an intended service because they left their checkbook at home. As with our physical checks, the digital checks are also 100% trackable.
• Automatic Push Notifications with PassChecks® – This is hands-down the coolest feature of our service retention program. Not only will your customer have their service offers loaded on their smartphone, but theres more. Whenever they’re near your dealership, they’ll receive a Push Notification reminding them that they have VIP service offers to use with your service department. You really can’t market any more directly than that.
Successful Dealerships are Proactive, not Reactive
In this industry, your run-of-the-mill dealership is going to be very reactive. Late to the game on sales trends and what their competition is doing. That’s exactly what makes them run-of-the-mill and not a market leader. Where true success and market domination occurs is when dealerships decide to lead and not follow. Whether it’s with sales tactics, strategies, or most importantly, marketing.
If you only plan on just doing whatever it takes to keep up with your competition, follow is all you’ll ever be able to do.
However, if you have the desire to not use your competition as a frame of reference for your success, you’ll find that thinking outside the box and implementing unique marketing, will help you lead the pack. The second you have your competition reacting to what you’re doing, that’s the second you know you’ve become a leader in your market.
And isn’t that the goal of every dealership? I don’t know when the last time you jumped in front of a video camera to film a testimonial for a marketing company, but our clients do. You can see the testimonial videos sent to us from dealers just like you.
If you’d like to have a serious conversation about partnering with a company that is dedicated to your sales & service retention success, as well as making you stand out in your market without manufacturer marketing, simply fill out the form below.