If there’s one thing that we don’t like, it’s conforming. There are plenty of companies out there that conform to the limitations set forth by OEMs and we’re normally not one of them. Most dealers are okay with doing what their OEMs demand when it comes to websites as can be clearly seen with certain brands, but some dealers like to stand out. We agree with the latter wholeheartedly.

Unfortunately, the constraints being put on some dealers by the OEMs (and potentially more of them in the near future) are really starting to diffuse the competitive nature of the automotive industry on the internet. Somewhere along the lines, executives at some of the OEMs were sold a pitch from some marketing consultants that said that consistency was more important than competitiveness and there’s nothing we can do about that mistake, but we can help those individual dealers that want to take advantage of this fact. If everyone is given the same base from which to start, pulling ahead is easier with a little help.

In most circumstances, we recommend having a secondary (or, as some would put it, primary) website that expresses the individuality of the dealership while promoting higher lead conversions than OEM-mandated sites, but not everyone is in a position to take advantage of this. Those who cannot break free of their bonds need not fret. There’s an upside.

The image we selected for this post is perfect. It has multiple meanings, and while we’d love to go into all of those meanings, we’ll stick with the main theme. All of the penguins are the same variety, but one is able to stand out simply by changing position. The same holds true for car dealers that are stuck promoting their OEM website. It’s not a coincidence that bulk of out clients are using OEM websites. In most cases, those are the ones that are easiest for us to move the needle.

Think of it as modifying a stock car. If everyone is given the same basic vehicle, then a dealership can gain the upper hand by enhancing that vehicle. They might look the same on the surface, but just as with a car that has a modified engine, so too can a compliant dealer website excel if given the right adjustments.

For our clients, it’s a matter of staying within the boundaries of compliance but doing the things through social media and SEO that can help them get more exposure.  This is how we’ve been able to truly take advantage of the way that OEMs are mandating to their dealers and still be able to deliver amazing results. It’s actually easier in some cases to truly stand out on both search and social when everyone else is given the same set of rules.

On search and social, the OEM mandated companies are charged with keeping everyone within their own little box. We expand the box and even take our dealers outside of their box while maintaining proper compliance. We do this through the outside signals that do not break the rules but that give our dealers the boost they need to stand out. It’s like having the same penguin, but turning it into a different position that allows it to be more noticeable to the audience.

In your case, the audience is car buyers. That’s what we do, automotive social media and automotive SEO. We take your constraints and turn them into strengths by working for our clients rather than the OEMs. It’s the difference maker that moves the needle. You may be in a position of being stuck with what the OEM gives you, but that doesn’t mean you have to always be on a level playing field. Stand out. We can help.