Personalization is the key to reaching your shoppers when they are ready to buy a car.  Shotgun blast marketing techniques like TV commercials, radio spots, and newspaper ads are excellent for branding, although the case could be made that even branding efforts are also better suited for the digital space.  These traditional delivery methods will never come close to offering personalization and precision targeting.  Enter Facebook ads.

With carefully constructed Facebook ad campaigns innovative dealers can inexpensively reach individuals in their downtime and offer unique messages to catch their attention.  These are not the posts on the “front-facing” business Facebook page.  We’re talking about Dark Posts which are delivered directly into the newsfeed of your targeted shoppers.  There they are scrolling through baby pictures, cat memes, viral videos, and inspirational quotes from their friend who is going through a break-up and BAM!  A gentle reminder that they have business to complete.  The business of buying a car!  Using partner data, we can now target down to the model level in which your shoppers are interested (think Camry, Malibu, Civic instead of the broader Toyota, Chevy, or Honda.)  Instead of blasting out all your offers, or worse, none of your offers – get specific.  Get personal.

Tom has indicated that he is in-market for a new Silverado and intends to buy within the next few weeks.  This insight was collected based on Tom’s behavior online, websites he visited, pages has liked, and a myriad of other signals too sophisticated for us simple car guys to grasp.  Whatever dark magic Facebook employs, it works.  Since we know that Tom wants to buy a vehicle, specifically a Chevrolet, and even MORE specifically a Silverado, we can use this knowledge to hand-craft a message to hit him right between the eyes.  Our goal is the “serendipity” moment where our Silverado ad appears to Tom as if a sign from a higher power that it is, in fact, the right time to buy his shiny new truck, and that he would be smart to buy it from OUR dealership.

It would be an incredible waste of resources to expend all the effort and money hand-delivering this message to one person so, while we’re at it, we go ahead and target every other person in our dealer’s area who wants a Silverado as well.  Bonus – we target Rebecca too.  She’s been identified by the magical robots as being in the market for a Ford F-150.  While brand loyalty is rampant among domestic lines there are still defectors.  Experience has taught us how common it is for a shopper to land on a vehicle which is different than the one they started shopping.  So, we’ll go ahead and deliver a conquest message to all those who are shopping for Ford, RAM, and Nissan pickups as well, like, “Considering a Ford, well don’t because they’re crap, buy a Chevy!” (or something less petty and more educational about the differences between the two trucks highlighting features and benefits of the Silverado and the Chevy dealer at bat.)

This is not rocket science, but it does require creative-minded individuals with a knack for constructing compelling digital advertisements and the know-how to navigate Facebook’s ad platform.  Model-level targeting is not available to all Business Manager users so you’ll need a partner with a relationship in place with Zuckerberg’s minions.

Take advantage of the low-cost, high-return world of Facebook targeted advertising and watch your market share increase.  It’s glorious.