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It's a given that auto dealers have to spend money to make money. What's become clearer in recent years - as the effects of those dollars have become more and more traceable - is that there are some marketing channels that are more effective than others.
You'll still find the die-hards who are convinced that they have to do print and television advertising at a minimum, regardless of whether they produce quantifiable results. And unless the dealer is asking absolutely every warm body that wanders onto the lot how they heard about the dealership, he's going to attribute the lion's share of those ups to the intangible brand awareness generated by those ever-present ads.
These days, savvy dealers augment those warm bodies in any way they can:
and just about anything else they can think of, short of dialing for dollars through the phone book.
(Though I'm sure there are some who considered that last one as a real possibility when things were really bad a while back.)
That's all well and good, but unless there's a process in place for turning the interest generated by all that activity into sales, you might as well open up the nearest window and chuck your money out. It doesn't matter where the prospect comes from – if they don’t hear from you in a timely fashion after they’ve raised their hand, you’ve just wasted the money you spent on the channel they came in from.
If you’ve got a marketing program that isn’t working the way you expect, get that vendor on the phone to talk it through. But before you do that, take a look around your store to see what your team is doing with those prospects. We've covered the top 5 best practices for follow up, but here’s a refresher:
You may have identified your own, based on what works for your store. But if you’re missing one of these, you’re not getting the most you can out of what you’re paying for.
What do you do to ensure that your sales team isn't losing money for you?