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I've written about online marketing before, and it's encouraging to continue to see it take hold at the dealership.
Sites like this one, DealerELITE.net andDealerRefresh are joining the ranks of non-automotive-specific thought leaders like Hubspot as online resources for understanding and applying best practices for getting the most for your online marketing efforts.
If you check out at all of those websites to look for insight, you'll see an underlying theme: you can't manage what you can't track.
Long gone are the days -- at least for me -- when "brand awareness" was sufficient justification for launching an email campaign or laying out thousands of dollars a pop on advertising (especially print). It's a discipline that we're adhering to here, and I've got the task of creating the monthly reports to prove it.
If I have an online marketing channel, such as an e-newsletter sponsorship, that's not generating the leads I need, it's up to me to rework the message to move the prospect to where I need them to be. If I'm not keeping an eye on my conversion rates and leadflow, then I have no idea how I'm doing.
What tools and metrics are you using to manage your online marketing?