Content marketing has become a major key to engaging with your online audience of car buyers. It's very different from traditional advertising, yet it has the same goal—getting people interested in your vehicles.
Instead of delivering sales pitches, content marketing is all about sharing informative and entertaining content that helps customers learn about products before they make purchases. Even though this concept of marketing has been around for decades, it has emerged as a strong component of search engine optimization in recent years.
The best way to understand content marketing, especially for an auto dealer website, is to think of it as ‘friendly communication’ with people shopping for their next vehicle. People are tired of being bombarded with advertising messages. In fact, that's one of the reasons they go to the internet, so that they can escape traditional advertising and pursue their own interests without commercial interruptions.
Social networks have become viable vehicles for utilizing content marketing, because of their interactive nature. They not only make it easy to share links to your web pages, they allow you to summarize product information and post images that raise curiosity. Social media sites like Facebook and Twitter also give you instant feedback on what customers think about your cars. The point of social media is to engage in dialogue with your customers then direct them to your dealership website, which is where you give them opportunities to gain deeper insight about your vehicles.
Your website can gain a competitive edge the more you provide information about your vehicles. As Amazon has proven for years, consumers gravitate toward pictures, descriptions, and reviews. Video demonstrations have also become very powerful in swaying people's opinions. Each of these content marketing elements help people learn which vehicle best fits their needs, as the age of the uninformed consumer has ended.
Authentic videos of testimonials, interviews, test drives, humor, and vehicle details are excellent ways to build on this paradigm. You may also want to include articles about the history of each of the vehicles you sell. Another powerful tool is the infographic, which summarizes facts with images and text, usually in the form of easy-to-read charts.
Your dealership’s traffic will likely improve if you build a loyal online community of car shoppers who turn to your dealership website as a helpful resource. That means you need to offer more than just a website full of ads. The more entertainment and research you can provide your customers, the more they will think of you as the place that answers their questions.
Make sure you are engaging in content marketing by offering a wealth of information that cannot be found from other dealers. Providing original content that online users are already searching for is part of what will help your site get excellent search results.
Bill Parlaman is the vice president of digital marketing for Stream Companies, the leading full service integrated automotive advertising agency. Want even more information on SEO? Watch the Truth about SEO Webinar at: info.streamcompanies.com/dealer-seo.