Digital dealership marketing encompasses all marketing campaigns and endeavors powered by digital channels. Facebook and other digital ads, social media, online videos, blogs/website content are all examples of digital marketing.
How a dealership or business takes advantage of these marketing channels can impact their visibility with consumers. When done effectively, digital dealership marketing could help to grab the attention of consumers and that interest could possibly convert to a sale. Here’s how to use digital dealership marketing for maximum visibility.
FACEBOOK AND DIGITAL ADS
Is print dead? Not necessarily. However, most consumers own a smartphone or other digital device (like a tablet) that can be used for digital communications like text, social media and surfing the internet for news. And, of course, computers are a somewhat normal household gadget now. While computers were once a luxury, according to 2018 data from the United States Census Bureau, more than 90 percent of households now have a computer.
Print ads were once a standard means to reach potential buyers. Now, though, the influence might have shifted to the digital channels. Social media channels also are an ideal way to stay in front of consumers, too. In fact, the most popular social media platform, Facebook, counts more than 2.8 billion active users per month.
Facebook ads or ads via other digital sites can include the dealership’s inventory, or they might even be more targeted based on a consumer’s preferences or a demographic area. New to the idea of digital advertising via social media?
Facebook actually has a great help page for interested business. Creating an ad is easy, and businesses can even follow the data on their ad to understand its impact. Businesses can even amend their ad campaign to improve performance. Facebook also offers Facebook IQ to provide businesses with more data on the differences between Facebook and Instagram and how consumers utilize these two different platforms. This data can help dealerships and other businesses better understand how to create their ads to communicate with users within these different platforms. A Facebook ad might look different than an Instagram ad.
Facebook and Instagram aren’t the only two platforms that offer advertising opportunities. Dealerships can launch ad campaigns on Youtube or other social channels. They also could focus on Google Ads. Or dealerships even could embrace over-the-top advertising.
A dealership’s marketing budget can play a large role in what ad options the dealership chooses. Dealerships may work with a professional ad or marketing agency. Or they could work with Facebook directly to create an ad.
DIGITAL DEALERSHIP MARKETING: DIRECT TO VIDEO
Advertising can include commercials or videos, but video content doesn’t have to necessarily function as an advertisement. Video content can be fun and informative; videos can be used to connect to a wider audience, to entertain or even to provide helpful knowledge.
There are several social media platforms that allow businesses to post video content. Facebook lets users share videos. Instagram focuses on both photos and videos. TikTok is video-centric, but these videos are short (about a minute).
However, the dominant video-centric social platform is YouTube. Hootsuite reports that YouTube boasts two billion monthly users and that nearly three quarters of adults in the U.S. visit YouTube. Videos on YouTube can feature anything and everything. Content really runs the gamut. Currently, the most popular video on YouTube remains the Baby Shark video! The original video has more than NINE BILLION VIEWS!
How do dealerships use video marketing? On YouTube, the possibilities can be almost endless. Video content can include tours of the showroom, interviews with the sales team (introducing them), fun videos about upcoming sales and more.
Dealerships also have been known to get creative for video content. While dealerships can watch a few videos on YouTube to see how other businesses use the site, the best videos are unique and true to a dealership’s personal brand. Don’t copy! Brainstorm content ideas, but, in the beginning, a few simple videos could help get the dealership on the YouTube map.
Social media marketing is an easy way for dealerships to reach out to and engage with current and potential customers. But these channels also are a great way to simply help draw more visibility to a business, too.
Dealerships might be active on one or more social media platforms. Some dealerships might even have a marketing team or one designated employee who handles these social accounts. Social media marketing doesn’t have to only focus on dealership sales or new cars. Businesses often use social media simply to stay engaged with followers. Posts can be fun or simply celebratory—like sending out a Happy Holiday note.
However, social media also is a great way to notify customers about dealership events, too. If a big snowstorm has hit the area, reach out via social channels to update customers on dealership hours (or even a dealership closure…if roads are just too bad).
Dealerships also could include posts to celebrate employee anniversaries or congratulate them on a promotion. Of course, social media channels also are an ideal place to post photos of new inventory…and promote sales and other events, too!
WEBSITE CONTENT AND BLOGS
A dealership’s website is its virtual hub and home. When consumers are researching cars, they may be visiting dealership websites, too. Buyers might want to see prices, promotions and check out any new vehicles. Of course, if they’re on the hunt for pre-owned models, then inventory might be top on their list.
Content on the website can be yet another way for dealerships to get noticed. Websites often may offer different tools and resources for potential customers. Think about a favorite store website—maybe a big box store. Not only can consumers look at products, but they can drop a note to customer service and sometimes even read stories or other fun content. For example, clothing brands might offer blog articles about fall fashion trends or something similar.
While not all dealerships might want to include a blog, they may want to look over their current website including traffic, page views and other data. This can help dealerships and any business find out what pages are doing well and what customers like on the site.
If Covid impacted the dealership, then more online features might have been added to the website to pivot to a virtual shopping experience. Dealerships also might want to ensure that their website links to social media accounts, too. This can help customers find the dealership on favorite social channels.
USING STOCK PHOTOS IN DIGITAL DEALERSHIP MARKETING
Whether dealerships are placing ads via social channels, creating video content or auditing their website’s numbers to determine what pages are most successful, marketing content isn’t going to focus solely on words. Images are an important part of the communication picture. Great images, crisp images, high res images can enhance the look and professional nuance of digital marketing campaigns.
Dealerships might photograph their own inventory—including new models. Or they might hire a professional photographer. However, if dealerships are crunched for time, or they just want to ensure that every new model is presented perfectly, then professional stock photos could be an ideal solution.
Using stock photos can be a simple solution for dealerships, too. There is no concern about if the light will be perfect to capture the car’s hue. Numerous shots don’t have to be snapped of tiny interior details. Instead, all these images are provided…in the best light. This also keeps images consistent; each model will have the same high resolution and professional image selections.
Dealerships can choose from models that are photographed in front of unique backdrops…like the lush beauty of snow. They also can opt for standard showroom shots. And dealerships also could choose to include entire slideshows of every model with detailed, up-close photos of even small interior details (like the infotainment system or other features).
EVOX Images even provides dealerships with the option to choose 360 degree panorama shots. This allows consumers to see the car from all angles. These unique photo options ensure that when potential buyers are researching their future car, they can find the best images of their favorite models. There won’t be a question of missing details, because dealerships can find photos to share of different aspects of each model.
Professional stock photos aren’t the only option from EVOX Images. Dealerships also can include professional vehicle video content from EVOX Images’ video library. These videos include interior and exterior shots to give customers a look at their favorite automobiles…via video!
CREATING A DIGITAL PLAN
Dealerships all have their own unique brand, and they might all approach their marketing strategies uniquely. Digital dealership marketing can encompass numerous online channels including the dealership’s website, social media, online advertising and video content, too.
Marketing budgets can impact what strategies are best for each dealership. Some might have nearly bottomless budgets for streamlined digital advertising via Facebook, Google, etc. Others might have to invest their ad dollars in a few key and highly impactful media.
Social media marketing also could help dealerships communicate, reach out to and engage with current customers and potential customers online. Dealerships might be active on one or more social platforms…including YouTube for video content. Social media content doesn’t always have to be about business; it also can simply be used to engage with followers. Send upbeat messages, wish followers Happy Fri-Yay or even ask followers about their favorite barbecue side dishes (get creative!).
When analyzing digital marketing communications, dealerships also might look at their website data to find out what pages are doing well and how site visitors are engaging. To enhance the professionalism of website content and other digital marketing, dealerships can opt to use professional stock images from EVOX Images to best capture new inventory models. Stock images ensure that customers and site visitors get the best look at their favorite cars—inside and out! Dealerships can even use stock videos to provide customers with a video tour of their favorite models!
Ready to give your dealership’s digital marketing content a visual upgrade? Contact EVOX Images today!