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Posts Tagged ‘Auto lead generation’

Automotive Lead Generation – Don’t Take Content for Granted!

Posted on: August 31st, 2012 by credit

Many dealers do not realize it but the content of your dealership website or blog can greatly impact your automotive lead generation efforts, especially if you do it right. Whatever form of content marketing (blogs, social media, articles, white papers, ebooks, etc.) you are employing to generate car sales leads, consider the following basic principles in doing content marketing and learn how to do it more effectively.

The Topic

Finding a topic to write about is one of the most challenging aspects of content marketing as sometimes, fresh and interesting topics seem unavailable. Keep in mind that topics should always be relevant. Some great topics to write about for car shoppers are car reviews, automotive news, auto industry trends, tips, and information about the technical aspects of car buying.

Topics must be relevant and interesting because your goal in writing for car shoppers is to establish connection with potential customers. Thus, content must appeal to their needs and interests. Find out what car shoppers consider as hot today by talking to some of your leads, reading conversations of car shoppers and buyers in forums, and monitoring consumer behavior by subscribing to studies.

What Keywords?

The use of keywords may not be necessary in print and broadcast advertisements, but when you do it online, keywords become an important part of your content. Come up with a roster of most searched keywords through the help of a keyword research tool. Use these keywords in your articles. In this way, you will drive more traffic to your website, which could bring more leads and eventually turn into sales.

The Good Content

First thing that should be established here is your content should be non-promotional. Although you use content as an automotive lead generation tool, car shoppers would hate, or even not be interested at all, to read promotional materials. You will capture leads more when you give them information instead, which brings another characteristic of a good content: educational. Make sure that your readers will certainly get something useful from your articles. Articles must be simple and concise. Use only simple language and keep the articles short. Car shoppers do not always have all day to read a lengthy article. Lastly, a good content is something worth of being shared with others. This means that your content must be so good that your readers would love to share it via social media.

As Catchy as Odd

Make your content eye-catching by using attention-grabbing headlines and engaging graphics. Attach relevant photos, videos, infographics, or charts and tables to complement your article and to make them more interesting and understandable. In most cases, this is where you need to squeeze your creativity more.

Why Thou Art Not Blessed With Internet Auto Leads From Social Media

Posted on: August 28th, 2012 by credit

Social media is one of the most powerful lead generation platforms today. With this fact, you may be expecting that it has to give you, then, more internet auto leads. But you are not getting enough and you might be wondering what’s wrong. Perhaps, you are doing social media marketing the wrong way. Here is a list of social media mistakes and see if you can relate with any of them.

Selling Than Interacting

In case you haven’t realized it yet, social media is for interaction—whether in the hands of a dealer or a typical teenager. Social media is not primarily designed to be a marketplace. Therefore, use it according to its first purpose that is, to interact with people online. Many businesses fail in their social media marketing efforts because they’ve got the wrong focus: selling. In fact, some people get turned off when they realize that a business entity in a social networking site is just trying to acquire as much customers as it can. Internet auto leads would not come flowing in to your dealership with this approach. Make interaction the priority and engage with prospects and customers online.

Getting Too Much Attention

Do not be so vain wanting to get many hits, likes, followers, and comments. Many businesses pour out much of their marketing efforts and tricks just to get noticed online. This is not why you have chosen to be social. Focus on your target market and nurture relationships with potential customers and foster loyalty among your existing customers. You don’t need much marketing gimmicks to do this, as much as you don’t need too get all the attention in the social media sphere.

Little Content

This is an obvious mistake. Do not be misled that social media does not need content. It does. The best way to build relationships online is to be a helping hand to the car buying public. Give them helpful resources and information that might answer their needs. Post quick tips, news, or links to your blogs. Make sure that the topics you write about are always relevant to your prospects’ interests and needs.

Being a Copycat

Perhaps, this is something that you need to wake up from. Don’t just copy what you notice is working well in your competitor’s social media campaign. The truth is, what works best for them may not work the same with you. Find out, with your own experiments, what works best for you. Just copying from someone else’s strategy would not be a great effort that could result in great results.

Vehicles Made in U.S. Seen as Important by Dealership Leads

Posted on: August 14th, 2012 by credit

Have you encountered automotive dealership leads asking you about where a particular vehicle was made? Did one of them backed out from purchasing it because it is not made in the U.S.? If so, there is some good explanation to that. A recent study from AutoTrader.com Trend Engine revealed that vehicles made in the U.S. are seen as more important by car shoppers than vehicles made by U.S. manufacturers.

According to the July 2012 Shopper Insights Report, 41 percent of car shoppers say that it is important to purchase vehicles built in the U.S., while only 28 percent say that it is important to purchase from a U.S.-based company or automaker. Those car shoppers that comprise the 41 percent believe that purchasing vehicles made in America supports American jobs and the country’s economy and keeps American dollar at home.

Vehicles referred as “made in” America in the study includes vehicles that were physically built in the U.S. by U.S. workers, but not necessarily made by U.S. manufacturers. These car models can include foreign models. On the other hand, vehicles referred as “made by” U.S automakers are not necessarily made in the U.S. These vehicles can be built outside the country.

The report also revealed that more than half of the car shoppers surveyed perceive vehicles made by a foreign manufacturer in the U.S. as American-made. Only 43 percent see vehicles made by U.S. automakers outside the country as American-made. The top models made in the U.S. ranked by AutoTrader.com are 2013 Chevrolet Malibu Eco, 2013 Ford Escape, 2013 Dodge Dart, 2013 SRT Viper, 2013 Buick Enclave, 2012 Volkswagen Passat, 2012 Kia Optima, 2012 BMW X3, 2012 Honda Odyssey, and 2012 Mercedes-Benz ML-Class.

There are two possible insights that can be learned from the study: that most car shoppers now prefer vehicles made in the U.S. and that they are more likely to buy such vehicles now. However, dealers cannot still operate with just these two possibilities, especially the latter. There are still many factors that car shoppers consider during the car buying process. Whether the vehicle is made in the U.S. or made by an American manufacturer is just one of the factors they consider.

Nevertheless, the insights and ideas that the study bring the industry are still considered as important for dealerships especially in their generation of automotive dealership leads and sales operations. It doesn’t mean, though, that dealers must only sell cars made in the U.S. from now on. It is just important for dealers to watch the trends in the industry closely as they rapidly shift.

Article Posting, Social Media, Blogs Among Most Popular Content Marketing Tactics, Study Says

Posted on: August 13th, 2012 by credit

A study completed by Content Marketing Institute (CMI) in 2011 revealed interesting shifts in the way industries perceive and use content marketing for the growth of their businesses.

According to the 2012 B2B Content Marketing report, with more than a thousand of marketers surveyed from various industries across the globe, article posting (79%), social media (74%), and blogs (65%) remain the three most popular content marketing tactics employed by B2B marketers. Meanwhile, blogs, videos, and white papers increased in usage. That means, more businesses have employed these content marketing tactics in 2011 compared to 2010.

In terms of effectiveness, in-person events, webinars, case studies, and research reports were rated by the respondents as the most effective tactics. However, the results also showed that marketers have more confidence now in the effectiveness of blogs, which has the biggest growth of 45%, case studies, videos, and webinars.

The study also measured the challenges that marketers face with content marketing. The top challenges cited are producing the kind of content that engages prospects/customers, producing enough content, and budget to produce content. Some of the respondents explained these issues further saying that it takes time to engage prospects and that they need to find time to create content. Some also cited the problem in human resources that there’s not enough people to work the content. Others find it difficult to produce “emotionally compelling” content.

Zooming in to the automotive industry, dealers also experience the same challenges in providing content for their own web pages and blogs. In effect, many of them do not see these channels as effective in producing internet leads. For dealers content marketing challenges, here are some tips:

  • If you find it difficult to produce compelling content, write about relevant topics that you think are interesting and useful for online car shoppers. Examples of such content are car reviews, car financing information and advice, car buying tips, automotive news, and the like. Keep in mind, though, that there is no easier way to do this. Providing relevant, fresh, unique, and useful content as frequently as daily requires hard work.
  • Allot more funds for content marketing. Be part of the 60% who said in the survey that they will increase their budget for content marketing for the next 12 months. If you have more funds, you can hire more people to work the content for you, solving the human resource problem.

Keep in mind that in reality, the effectiveness of a marketing strategy is all about what and what not works for you. There is still a possibility that article posting, social media, and blogs will not work for you. Take the time to experiment on other tactics and consistently measure results to see what works best for you—that means generating more internet leads and experiencing sales boost.

Blogging? Yes, It Generates Leads

Posted on: August 10th, 2012 by credit

In general, blogging is the modern way to write journals now. People, especially teens, write about and post on their blogs their thoughts, ideas, experiences, feelings, and other things. However, for businesses, blogging is a marketing or lead generation strategy and it has been increasingly valued by businesses.

Why Dealers Should Blog

Something to think about: If your competitors blog and they have been experiencing great results from that particular effort alone, wouldn’t you feel the pressure to keep pace? Broadly speaking, blogging has been thriving as a lead generation technique. Here are some convincing facts:

According to the 2012 State of Inbound Marketing Report by HubSpot, inbound marketing, which includes blogging, cost 61% lower than outbound marketing. Blogs is indicated as the least costly lead source. The report also said that businesses have been allocating more funds for inbound marketing (12 percentage points higher than the average budget allocated for outbound marketing) since last year. These mean that businesses are getting more inclined to inbound marketing, perceiving blogs as the most cost-effective lead source.

The report also showed that 60% of the businesses surveyed are posting on their blogs at least weekly. The results of the report imply that the more frequent you blog, the more customers you’ll acquire. In a separate study by the same group, businesses that are blogging at least 20 times a month have driven traffic 5 times more. Those who posted a total of over 200 articles on their blogs got more leads (about 3.5 times) more than those who only have lower than 20 blog posts.

The study also found that companies deem their blogs as crucial to their businesses. Company blogs are also more valued now, with 8 percentage points difference from the results of the same study three years ago.

How Dealers Should Blog

Given the facts above, be reminded that the success in blogging does not come overnight. You need to be patient and diligent in your campaign before you finally see the results. Remember also that the two main products a dealership offers are vehicles and auto financing. There has been a shift in car shoppers’ behavior: They are more dependent on auto loans now to purchase a car. Thus, it isn’t that hard to find auto loan leads now. However, attracting them and turning them into sales are more challenging.

In automotive blogging, provide only unique (not copies from other websites), fresh (new content as often as daily), and helpful content. You can write about news, tips, related reports or studies, vehicle reviews, and other helpful information to catch the interest of online car shoppers. Use strategic keywords in your articles. By using a keyword research tool, find out what related keywords are most searched by internet users. Use these keywords in your articles so they will drive traffic and attract more auto loan leads.

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