A digital content network creates a positive, welcoming atmosphere that benefits dealership customers and your bottom line.
About 227 million Americans visited a franchised auto dealership last year. Combined, these visitors spent 400 million hours in dealerships shopping for new cars or having their vehicles serviced.
Were these 400 million hours utilized effectively? If they were not used to drive dealership and brand loyalty while increasing sales, then the answer is a resounding “no.”
Monetized, 400 million hours equates to $2.4 billion of untapped marketing opportunity. How can a dealership take advantage?
Dealerships are in a desirable marketing situation: They have a concentrated, engaged audience of existing customers spending considerable time that can be leveraged daily for in-store marketing purposes.
The most obvious area of focus for dealers should be customers who are waiting for their cars to be serviced. These important and loyal customers, often left unattended and “entertained” by watching daytime TV, are not being targeted as they should be.
Dealership-provided TV screens should be more than a source of entertainment. They should be part of a marketing strategy that, used effectively, can be an engine that drives a positive, empowering atmosphere to not only make customers feel good, but also positively impacts the dealership’s bottom line.
1. Creates a positive environment
After their home, a car is generally the second most expensive purchase people make in their lifetime. In this period of economic recovery, dealers must make their customers feel confident and assured to facilitate the purchase. This can be accomplished by creating a positive atmosphere.
A simple way to achieve this is by eliminating negative content on the screens throughout the dealership. News programs can instill doubt or anxiety in customers with their focus on financial stress, business woes, and a fluctuating economy. Daytime talk and reality shows can make customers uncomfortable with their inappropriate themes, political commentary, and often-aggressive speech.
Worse, regular broadcast TV invites competitors to advertise their products and services directly to your customers while their car is top of mind. Ads from competing quick-service companies, dealerships, and brands have no business being broadcast in today’s well-managed dealership.
Dealers should utilize a digital signage network provider to curate and display positive, family-friendly programming that keeps competitors out, entertains guests, and cultivates a positive affinity for—and loyalty to—the dealership and its brand.
2. Develops a personalized atmosphere
Nobody likes feeling like a number, and nobody likes waiting. Dealers should customize content to guests to personalize their experience, make them feel special, and provide relevant information on the dealership’s products and services in a relaxed, non-pushy way.
Personalization through a customized digital content network can be utilized in many forms. A simple welcome message at the point of entry that includes the customer’s name adds a personal touch to show the dealership values that person’s business.
In the waiting room, the dealership can use customized content to alert customers that their service has been completed. In the showroom, a customer’s purchase of a new vehicle can be celebrated, and the news can be broadcast throughout other areas of the dealership to create that elusive “wow!” experience.
This type of celebration reassures customers and generates positive energy throughout the dealership, encouraging others to also purchase.
3. Promotes a feeling of excitement
Excitement is contagious. Dealerships should take advantage of this. Digital signage injects excitement by providing animated content, and generates energy around dealership activities in a modern way that mimics the connected world that customers are accustomed to.
Modern digital advertising enables dealers to integrate with mobile apps, allowing for real-time update sharing. Such an app could, for example, give a sales team advanced control over the digital signage network from anywhere in the showroom with a mobile device.
A message or picture can be broadcast to showroom screens, and also integrate with social media, to personally recognize and celebrate the customer’s purchase.
An organic excitement is generated when the customer is celebrated in a meaningful way. The excitement naturally increases engagement and satisfaction. Satisfaction creates loyalty, and loyalty ultimately means more business.
The world of automotive retail is highly competitive. A dealership must look for creative and energizing ways to set itself apart.
When it comes time to make a major purchase or choose where to take their vehicle in for service and repairs, customers will weigh many factors. The value of an atmosphere of positivity, personalization, and excitement cannot be discounted.
Customers will reward dealerships that reinforce positive customer experiences throughout the dealership with loyalty and repeat business. A customized digital content network is an excellent tool that, used effectively, creates a positive, welcoming atmosphere that benefits the customer and the bottom line.
Jerry Daniels is founder, president, and CEO of Automotive Broadcasting Network (ABN). Since founding ABN in 2007, Daniels has leveraged his nearly 30 years of experience within the automotive retail industry to drive innovation in the digital marketing space, providing dealerships with tools to capitalize on direct marketing to customers throughout the waiting rooms, showrooms, and service areas of the dealership. To learn more about a customized digital signage network and how to drive increased sales and dealership loyalty, visit the Automotive Broadcasting Network at www.abnetwork.com.0
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