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2009 Traffic Vision – Change Your Thinking

Automotive Advertising – Change Your Thinking

After reading so much about ‘mall anchors and stores’ closing down, I am of the opinion, “all of the hype and pressure to take people to websites may have played a role in developing a shopping pattern that kept people at home on keyboards.”

I think dealers need to keep an eye on where they direct their shopper.

There’s no doubt about the success of the internet at dealerships that know how to work it, but many in our industry are settling for “that’s just the way it is.” Now I don’t know what percentage of vehicles are delivered to ‘homes and offices’ for shoppers to test drive, but I would think it is minimal at this point. The majority of vehicle sales will still be completed at the dealership.

My suggestion to complete this thought is ‘Dealership Directed’ creative:

Direct mail where coming to the dealership is an absolute must, there is no advantage to shopping online. Advertising that pushes pricing so low it will not be shown during this TV commercial or online… “Dealership Direct Pricing on a special shipment of new Toyotas that takes savings to the highest level in the history of this company, as 48 Camrys and 39 Corollas have been parked in a separate display area.” 
This is not new thinking, but may be right thinking for what is going on – how do you get people to the dealership? Subtle, not a sell-out of Internet advertising at all, but blatant effort to bring people to the lot with something ‘too good to be true”!

If internet business is now being called the low hanging fruit, then in order to grow and grow fast, you are going to have to set your sights and reach a little higher. Demand people come to your dealership for a once in a lifetime opportunity and at least 1% of them will probably show up. If your advertising is being placed properly – then this percent should be enough to see a sizeable return on your investment.

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John Paul Strong

John Paul Strong combines his two decades of automotive marketing experience with a team of more than 150 professionals as owner and CEO of Strong Automotive.

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