Individual Automotive Repair Email Marketing Approaches
Approaches to email marketing
vary with each individual automotive repair facility. Many factors must be taken under consideration, from geography and size to the individual preferences of the business owners and managers.
Promote with Service Specials
Rodney Carter, general manager of Jeff Wyler Toyota in Clarksville, Indiana states that out of his many marketing options, email campaigns are "cheaper, so every month we'll send out service specials, whether it be oil change coupons, 'winterize your car' or for a 150-point inspection." He adds that his business employs 15 salespeople, four of whom are solely dedicated to online marketing
. "The young generation – the X and the Y – they don't read newspapers," stated Mr. Carter. "If I want to build my business in the future, I have to market it to those people."
Strengthen Brand Awareness, Relationships, Trust & Loyalty
Jim Trenary, owner of the Jim Trenary Automotive Group in St. Louis, Missouri, has an annual advertising budget of close to one million dollars, but lately has been "shifting funds out of radio" and into online marketing for his overall operations - including his service departments. According to DMG Auto Sales & Service in Quakertown, Pennsylvania, "informative email newsletters, emails and other awareness, contribute to branding, strengthen relationships, encourage trust and cement loyalty."
Engage Socially but Mind the Fundamentals
President Rob Mudd of Mudd Advertising warns that, while online marketing is powerful, it must be part of a comprehensive and careful strategy when it comes to promoting an automotive service business. "Don't be misled by the word interactive," Mr. Mudd explained. "If that interactivity is not shored up by good retail messaging, all you will have at the end of the day are a lot of useless 'cookie' crumbles. It's not about the toys, but the creative content and messaging that come with them."
Turn Away from Dying Mediums
Todd Swickard, CEO of consultant group Newstart, says many automotive businesses "have increased that amount [spent on email marketing] to be equal to or above their traditional advertising." Rob Anderson, President of Focus, Inc., speaks directly to automotive repair facility owners and managers about the turn from conventional advertising media toward online marketing. "You must look at audience shifts and dying mediums," Mr. Anderson said. "They certainly exist, and many automotive businesses are still participating in them. Find out from your customers where they get their entertainment and editorial content. You may find it is the Internet."