Category Archives: Automotive News

10 Reasons Why Car Dealers Need to Be In Vegas at AutoCon in September!

10 Reasons Why You Need to Be In Vegas at AutoCon in September!

10 Reasons Why Your Dealership Needs to Send its Management Team to Las Vegas for AutoCon 2013 in September!

As I speak with my dealer friends on a daily basis, I know that now is the time when they are evaluating and deciding which Fall Conferences to attend this year.
So, I wanted to make the decision easy and provide everyone with the top ten reasons why you need to be at AutoCon on September 4th, 5th and 6th.
The Reasons Are Simple:
1) Hosted a the five star and beautiful ARIA Resort & Casino and rooms are only $125 PER NIGHT!
2) WORKSHOPS THAT ARE CATEGORIZED FOR EACH ROLE AT THE DEALERSHIP, enabling your team to focus on strengthening their department’s strategies and processes
3) Actionable items to take back and implement at the dealership.  We don’t allow our attendees to leave asking themselves “Where do I begin with all this information?” WE MAKE ACTION PLANS!
4) Over 40 top industry thought leaders presenting educational workshops- NO SELLING!
5) OEM keynote presentation and series of Dealer Panel Discussions for YOU to Participate in!
6) FREE Wireless internet and access to all workshop recordings post show
7) DEALER PRINCIPALS ARE COMPLIMENTARY!
8) Intimate atmosphere and ideal networking setting. YOU MAKE RELATIONSHIPS NOT JUST BUSINESS TRANSACTIONS!
9) Highly engaging workshops with rich content that help you stay ahead of your local competition, and SELL MORE CARS!
10) DEALER NETWORKING ROUNDTABLES held each day, which allow you to have one-on-one time with industry professionals on particular topics of interest (Mobile, SEO, BDC, Reputation Management, and more).
Now is the time to act while the Early Bird rate is going on through July 4th.  Registration rates will only go up after that time, so don’t wait!
Make sure you share these ten reasons with your team, and use them to help convince your boss to give you the “stamp of approval” to book your trip!
See you in Vegas!

via 10 Reasons Why You Need to Be In Vegas at AutoCon in September! – Automotive Digital Marketing Professional Community.

Content Marketing – Automotive Professional Community

Content Marketing – Automotive Professional Community

 

Content Marketing

Local Small Businesses or Fortune 500 firms alike, that plan on using Content Marketing as part of their overall Online Strategy must challenge themselves in developing a campaign that underlines the outreach of useful information through accessible channels for maximum conversion.

Before any Content is created there are 4 influential steps in developing your Content Marketing Strategy. 

  1. Research
  2. Editorial Calendar
  3. Content Creation
  4. Distribution

Research : 

As with any strategy, the most important course of action is research. A lot of research is the best way to grasp a hold of who your readers are and will be. You need to think in terms of who your audience and what websites do they visit and often engage with.When you are thinking of your audience it is important to note the target demographic and their particular behaviors.

One of the best tools in performing content marketing research is Google’s Keyword Tool. Using this tool will allow you to learn about what keywords drive your industry nationally as well as locally. Most Small Business Owners do not know even this even exists but with a little elbow grease you can achieve 1st Page RankingsYou want to think of Keywords as your way of maximizing your contents:  

“Search Engine Visibility”. 

Social Media Marketing is playing a major force in how Content Marketing is being shaped. Being able to listen in on conversations is a great way to stay ahead of the curve. Social Listening is just that, it allows you to see fill in the, “Content Gaps”.

It is important to create a content marketing editorial calendar to plan your communications to current and prospective customers.

The 2nd step in your Content Marketing Strategy includes laying out what your message will be based on the day, the month and your mood.

1. Remember The Past

First thing first, you are going to need to do a little research and see what has worked before and what has not worked before, for your company and in your industry. 

Before you start piecing your content calendar together,
 you need to ask these questions:

What type of content did you deliver this year?
What method of content distribution did you use?
Next ask yourself in a quiet room, What Worked…and What Truly Failed ?

The Future is always Tomorrow but the seeds are to be planted today. 

By thinking about where you’ve been the next logical step is to think about where you will go next. Deciding the next 12 months content road map is a difficult process. As you envision where your company will be in the next year, you can think of the content marketing calendar as your guide – a month to month breakdown of what your online marketing and offline collateral efforts will consist of.

So here you are, asking yourself a few more questions in a quiet room,

  • Where do you see your business in the the future?
  • Where do you see your business in a year?
  • What type of clients do you want to service and help?
  • Are there new services that you can offer for more sales?
  • Are you doing everything you can to build your database?
  • Is your staff properly trained in conveying your brands’ message?
  • Can you see new opportunities that you may have overlooked?

2. Tag Team,  You Are It – Idea Brainstorm

Gather a group of your employees in a meeting room and meet with for a purpose. Depending on how big your company is you will have different teammates from different sectors. For our purpose we will talk about a small business – owner, manager, creative, etc. – anyone you think of value who would add insight into how you could best build content for your business. Maybe your accountant or your janitor.

You never know who might be creative. 

The Idea Brainstorm, is a perspective that will not only create a spark but will give you the opportunity to see it from their view, from their – “Panoramic Point of View” – you not only see it from their shoes, but also see through their eyes. This Idea Brainstorm not only gives you ideas from which to pull content from but but also an opportunity to hear what your employees are saying. There are times when a group gets together and becomes energetic. This energy sometimes produces ideas that generate millions of dollars.

Always be listening.   

 

Remember, this is a session where ideas can be different and formless, go with the flow and allow different people to communicate. Whoever is in charge, ultimately guides the Idea Brainstormand directs it to stay on course for time restraints.  This person will ideally be in charge of gathering all the raw ideas after the session, and creating a structure within the calendar template.

Questions for yourIdea Brainstorm

What content would I like to see if I was a customer?
What are we missing that we can improve on?
What content will be created  (i.e.pr, social media, graphics, video, local seo marketing,  interviews, etc.)
Any old content you can re-hash for the upcoming year?
What new methods of distribution can be more effective?
Is there a way to integrate offline marketing in to online traffic?
Who is going to write the content?

3. The Editorial Calendar Plan

So you have met with your teammates and gathered intelligence on how to effectively build the proper content that markets to the correct demographic. So now is the time to start working on the calendar. You can start with a simple piece of paper and jot down the day.

If any holidays are in that month make sure to note that and also note it three weeks ahead. In fact, lets go ahead and mark holidays with the colour blue or any colour you desire. 

Some people recommend using a monthly calendar, but to be honest the best possible and effective way to to use content marketing is to look as far ahead as up to 12 months. This will give you a specific plan for the year you can relate to whenever.

Add the info to the Content Marketing Calendar

Take your monthly sheet of paper from step 3 and start with the first day. Plot your information on the calendar as well as online for maximum usage. You want to be consistent as well as keep the info simple and direct. Remember to add Conferences, Bills, Holidays, Birthdays and any other information that may provide content.

Repeat this for Each Month (12x)

Now that you content scheduled for each month, this will allow you to automate some of your online marketing using a service like Sendible or Aweber. This will save you future time but also give you more time to do more social engagement online.

What’s great about your Automated Social Marketing, is that you can schedule what information you want posted on what day and on what page.

It also can determine the frequency as well as where the information gets distributed to.

As long as you are prepared with a constant stream of content built up, this will help you on the Search Engines. You will be providing your customers and potential clients, a formal introduction as to who you are and the type of information that can formulated from strategy base on your business.

 

via Automotive Digital Marketing Professional Community

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Automotive News Interviews Richard Bustillo: “Dealers Get In Your Facebook”

Automotive Dealers Get in your Facebook

Stores post ads directly on site’s news feeds

Richard Bustillo of Rick Case Honda says Facebook is taking advantage of new opportunities to reach customers by putting ads directly in news feeds.

 —Automotive News  

Thought Leadership

Richard Bustillo, general manager of Rick Case Honda in Davie, Fla., believes Facebook has finally cracked the code to help dealerships sell vehicles and service.

Marketers have long viewed Facebook as an online cocktail party — fine for socializing but weak for selling cars.

Now that’s changing. Rick Case Honda and other dealerships are starting to take advantage of Facebook’s huge potential to reach customers on the users’ digital home turf, by putting ads directly into their customers’ news feeds.

Technical improvements introduced in September allow dealerships to take their customer lists — with just names and e-mail addresses — and find those people on Facebook. The “custom audience” feature allows dealerships to push ads directly to Facebook users’ news feeds, the must-see center column of the home page that consists of a constantly updated list of posts by a user’s Facebook friends.

Facebook users are more likely to look at news-feed ads than those in the more common ad location, the right side of a Facebook page, the social media giant says.

“Facebook is starting to understand what we need to sell cars,” Bustillo said.

In June at Rick Case Honda, an employee-pricing-for-all promotion on Facebook contributed to a strong month — 615 new vehicles sold — the most of any Honda store nationally for the month, Bustillo said.

Facebook played a key role in the campaign’s success, he said. The store took its customer list with thousands of names and e-mail addresses and identified who were Facebook users. It then delivered to their news feeds the employee-pricing offer, Bustillo said.

Facebook also has improved the ability of dealerships and the factories to put promotional videos in front of car shoppers, Bustillo said. Facebook users are three to four times more likely to click on a video than a static ad, the company has found.

Rick Case Honda in 2012 has sold 4,238 new Hondas through Oct. 23, the third most of any Honda store nationally, the dealership said.

The knock on Facebook, from a marketer’s standpoint, is that although the huge social media site has been useful for automakers to promote brand awareness, it has been nearly irrelevant in the shopping process.

As recently as May, Dataium, a consulting company that monitors online vehicle shopping behavior, found that of 20 million visitors to dealership Web sites, just 120 arrived there directly from a Facebook link. Of that microscopic number, only a handful left contact information to become sales leads, Dataium found.

On the other hand, automakers have been building huge banks of friends and sending them soft sells, such as sponsored stories, that talk about topics such as the environment without a direct pitch for vehicle sales. Jeep, for instance, has more than 2 million Facebook fans.

Viral Advantages

In an interview last week, Doug Frisbie, Facebook’s head of automotive global marketing, said Facebook attained the technical capability to put ads on Facebook users’ news feeds in late January.

 

Ads placed there are more than eight times more likely than ads on the right side of a user’s Facebook page to prompt a reader to comment on the item or actively “like” it, Frisbie said. Facebook refers to a user’s interaction with an ad or item as “engagement.” And advertisers are seeing 10 times greater recall from news-feed ads than from static ads, he said.

Bustillo said he likes the news-feed ads because the dealership pays for them only when Facebook users click on them. That’s similar to Google paid search.

The ads also have the potential to go viral, Bustillo said. Each Facebook user has on average 130 friends, Facebook said. If a Facebook user shares an ad with friends, it has a multiplier effect of reaching people without additional cost to the dealership. The dealership pays for an ad only when the original audience clicks on it, Bustillo said.

Facebook declined to say how many dealerships or automakers have used the new capabilities to find their customers on Facebook or deliver ads to news feeds.

The company is watching for backlash from its users, accustomed to conversing relatively free of advertising, to having ads placed in their news feeds.

“We are carefully monitoring user engagement and sentiment,” Facebook COO Sheryl Sandberg said in an earnings call last week. “We look at how users are engaging on our platform, and as we’ve increased the number of ads and news feed we’ve been careful — carefully monitoring that engagement.”

Joe Castle, dealer principal of Castle Chevrolet in suburban Chicago, has matched about 8,000 people on his 14,000-person customer list with their Facebook addresses. In the past three weeks, he sent to their Facebook news feeds an offer for them to buy one oil change and get one free.

In the first two weeks, the campaign, which cost him about $500, generated about $12,000 in oil changes and other maintenance, Castle said. Castle Chevrolet pays Facebook about 60 cents when a customer targeted on Facebook clicks on the offer, he said. The store sold about 1,200 new vehicles in 2011.

“Facebook has really dialed it in,” said Castle, who also is founder of Socialdealer, a social media and reputation-management company for dealers.

Facebook’s features to target shoppers are evolving, Frisbie said. Within a month, Facebook expects to pilot a program with R.L. Polk & Co. that will allow automakers and dealerships to use Polk’s huge database of owners to identify sales prospects, he said.

“We’re talking about getting the right message at the right time in front of in-market shoppers,” Frisbie said.

Target Accord

Rick Case Honda expects to make heavy use of ads and video on Facebook news feeds next year to promote the redesigned 2013 Honda Accord sedan, Bustillo said.

The store is waiting to launch the campaign until early next year, though the 2013s are available now, to leave time for the store to clear 2012 models still in stock, he said.

When the campaign is rolled out, Bustillo said, he intends to shoot videos to potential customers through Facebook extolling the features of the sedan. Moreover, with the help of campaign consultant Tier10Marketing.com, the store will target Accord customers with equity in their cars so he can offer them a new Accord for the same or lower monthly payments, Bustillo said.  The targeting capability of Facebook makes it an economical media buy, he said.

Rick Case Honda spends about 20 percent of a $250,000 monthly advertising budget on digital advertising.Bustillo said he gets his best return on investment on the $2,000 a month that he spends on Facebook ads.

“I’m chomping at the bit to get started,” Bustillo said of the upcoming Accord campaign.

You can reach David Barkholz at dbarkholz@crain.com. — Follow David on Twitter and 

via Automotive News Interviews Richard Bustillo: “Dealers Get In Your Facebook” – Automotive Digital Marketing Professional Community.

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