It’s a good thing we have communication technology. If I had to do all of my social media presentations face-to-face with dealers, I would get tossed in the looney bin or slapped across the face for using crazy talk. The phrase that catches dealers the most: “We recommend your social media advertising budget should be X-thousand dollars per month.”
Thousands? THOUSANDS?!?! At this point, they wonder what I’ve been smoking. Thankfully, I don’t do drugs, I’m not insane (that I know of), and I’m not a social media “fanboy” who worships Facebook and thinks that it’s the best thing since toasted rye. I’m a business person who helps dealers achieve results and the results I’ve seen from proper hyper-targeted social media advertising designed to drive shoppers to dealers’ websites is nothing short of incredible.
Here’s the basic math:
- Search Engine PPC: $3-$6 per unique shopper
- LotLinx: $3.99 per unique shopper
- Social Media Advertising: $1-$2 per unique shopper
We strongly recommend that dealers use all three of these tools and services to drive car buyers to their websites. Looking at the math, one would think that PPC is the hardest to present and social media would be the easiest, but it’s the exact opposite. Dealers seem to have no problem spending money on our PPC. LotLinx makes sense for most of them. Social media – now we’re getting into the crazy talk despite the fact that it’s the most cost-effective out of the bunch.
It reminds me of the discussions I used to have with car dealers back in 2007 and 2008. Back then, they thought I was insane when I said they should be spending thousands of dollars per month on their search marketing. SEO, PPC, and emerging concepts like retargeting were miniscule parts of a dealer’s digital marketing budget (if it had any of the budget at all). Those who listened found incredible success before the mad rush that we’re in now where dealers are having to fight off other dealers, 3rd parties, and even their own OEMs for spots on the search engines.
The same thing is happening in social media. Some are really starting to get it. They see that they can invest $2,000 and get over 1000 unique shoppers to their website, landing them in inventory or specials pages and generating leads and sales as a result. Unfortunately, our industry has become skeptical of social media plays like this because they’ve seen too many high-dollar social media programs that didn’t yield the results they expected. That’s why we guarantee ours. We know it’s hard for dealers to fight through bad experiences they’ve had with social media, but we also are very well aware of the benefits that dealers are seeing when they make the leap. It’s not even a leap of faith, really, when you consider the guarantee attached.
Just as I once had to do with search marketing, I will ask the same question to dealers today regarding social media advertising. Most are wondering how they can afford to spend thousands of dollars on social media. My question for dealers who are truly aggressive and want to dominate their market: how can you afford to NOT take advantage of this growing phenomenon before it really explodes in your market?