Topic: Marketing tips

Choosing a digital marketing partner to set your dealership up for success

Posted by Meg Bernazzani on April 16, 2019

Digital marketing is a crucial way for your dealership to reach today’s online shoppers. But where do you start? There are essentially three main ways you can handle your dealership’s digital marketing efforts:

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Topics: digital marketing, marketing, Marketing tips, partner

Paid search: a car dealer’s path to driving more sales

Posted by Meg Bernazzani on April 4, 2019

When shoppers decide they’re in the market for a product or service—or they’re generally curious about something—they head to a search engine like Google for information. In fact, billions of Google searches happen every day. Think about how many of those are car searches—or, chances for your dealership to attract potential customers to your site.

While you can rely on search engine optimization (SEO) tactics to help you increase the ranking of your site without spending money, changing algorithms and ranking criteria make it hard to maintain your position in search results. So how else can you promote your dealership and drive new visitors to your site? Through the use of search engine marketing, or paid search as it’s commonly called.

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Topics: Marketing tips, paid search, search marketing, SEM

5 tips for writing compelling copy for online automotive ads

Posted by Meg Bernazzani on January 21, 2019

In the past several years, there’s been a surge in digital advertising spend in the automotive industry. Last year, for the first time, digital advertising made up more than half of total ad spending—and eMarketer forecasts that consistent, double-digit growth in digital ad spending for the auto industry will continue through 2019.

Yet all too often, dealerships treat the copy in their advertising as an afterthought. They toss in a few keywords, check the grammar, and hit publish. But copy is important—words matter!—and it should be treated that way.

We’ve put together some of the top tips for writing ad copy to help your dealership get the greatest ROI from online ads.

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Topics: advertising best practices, digital marketing, Marketing tips

CarGurus test drive reviews give dealers another way to reach car shoppers

Posted by Meg Bernazzani on December 18, 2018

CarGurus helps millions of shoppers find a good deal on the best car every day. How? You probably already know that consumers come to our site to compare models, read dealership reviews, and find a good price on the car they’re looking for. You might not know that they also come to CarGurus to get independent reviews of the cars they’re interested in. Our collection of video test drive reviews help shoppers discover which car is best for them by giving insight into the performance, comfort, technology, safety, and overall quality of some of the most popular makes and models.

From top-rated SUVs to new sedans and trucks, CarGurus test drive reviews are a great resource for shoppers narrowing their search—and resources that all dealers can share with their potential customers. Below are five of our most recent test drive reviews. Share them on your social channels or post them on your blog to give shoppers the final push they need to visit your lot.

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Topics: car reviews, consumer resources, Marketing tips, test drive reviews

Why your dealership should start marketing its service department—and 4 strategies for doing it

Posted by Meg Bernazzani on December 12, 2018

More than half of the average dealership’s revenue comes from its service department. Yet only about 30% of sales customers return to the dealership for service within the first year of ownership—and that number drops with each passing year. Why? Studies show that convenience and price are the main factors. Car owners believe that returning to the dealership for service is less convenient than visiting a local mechanic, and they assume non-dealership service options are better deals.

But as car owners continue to hang onto their vehicles longer than ever—and the opportunity to increase revenue grows—it’s become crucial for dealerships to expand their digital marketing efforts to include their service department. Dealerships that set themselves apart by marketing their services stay top of mind among existing customers and earn more new business.

Fixed ops marketing presents a valuable opportunity for dealerships, but to truly tap into the opportunity, you have to be strategic. Here we explore four things you can do to effectively market your dealership’s services and reach more potential customers.

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Topics: fixed ops, Marketing tips, service department

Use CarGurus resources to connect with customers after their car purchase and stay top of mind

Posted by Meg Bernazzani on November 20, 2018

People have become information-obsessed, even over the small stuff. And car buyers are no exception. They’re spending more time than ever—over 13 hours in many cases—researching their purchase options before ever making a decision.

But what happens to those car buyers after they’ve done their research and made their purchase at your dealership? Their need for information doesn’t end. As car owners, they need to know how to maintain their vehicles, where to go for service, what insurance to get, and more.

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Topics: consumer resources, driving sales, Marketing tips

Carefully measuring the performance of your email newsletter leads to better content and more engaged customers

Posted by Meg Bernazzani on August 15, 2018

As a car dealer who wants to engage customers and nurture loyalty, you probably send a regular e-newsletter (and if you don’t, you really should). But too many customer newsletters are bland, self-serving, and easily ignored. Great dealers set their newsletters apart by using key metrics to continually fine tune everything from core content to the time of day they send them. Customers value their newsletters, which makes them a potent weapon in your marketing mix.

Refining your own newsletter isn’t complicated, and it will never be wasted effort. Email marketing—of which an e-newsletter is an important component—remains an extremely effective marketing channel. According to Campaign Monitor, every $1 spent on email marketing earns $44 in return.

In other words, an effective e-newsletter is a key part of your marketing strategy. But measuring that effectiveness and tweaking it accordingly is vital. Newsletters that offer no value annoy consumers, who are increasingly prepared to report irrelevant emails as spam and unsubscribe from contact lists.

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Topics: email marketing, Marketing tips, metrics

Dealers who create content ramp up authority, trust, and sales

Posted by Meg Bernazzani on July 12, 2018

Good content gives you a trustworthy voice—and makes you stand out from the crowd

Creating your own content can transform you from one dealer among many into a trusted industry voice, helping to reassure potential buyers of your credibility and expertise. Engage your audience with video, graphics and images, as well as words. It’s all a lot easier than you might think.

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Topics: content creating, digital marketing, Marketing tips

What’s in a subject line? More than you think

Posted by Zev Ginsberg on June 4, 2018

Some absolutely amazing, creative, and engaging emails come from dealerships, but sometimes it’s purely by chance or curiosity that recipients open the messages. It’s often overlooked, but the subject line is the single most important piece of your email messages. People are bombarded with countless emails and most times, the only thing standing between your email and the “delete” button is the subject line.

According to a HubSpot study, automotive industry emails have an open rate of only 35%. Despite being slightly higher than open rates across all industries, which average 32%, it still means that 65% of your emails are never opened.

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Topics: advice, Marketing tips, tips and tricks

SEM metrics that matter: the value of VDP views and cost per VDP

Posted by Meg Bernazzani on March 26, 2018

Search Engine Marketing (SEM) has become an increasingly effective way for dealers to connect with in-market shoppers. In fact, over 80% of dealers are now investing in SEM, according to a CarGurus study. However, if you manage an SEM ad campaign you know that simply upping your budget isn’t enough. You also need to take the time to measure and analyze your campaign’s performance so you can optimize and refine your marketing accordingly.

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Topics: Marketing tips, search engine marketing, SEM