an online marketing plan for a automotive dealershipsDigital media has opened up a whole new world of possibilities for car dealers to effectively and efficiently market to their target audience. Competition is stiff in the automotive industry, but you can set yourself apart with the right tools and strategic car dealership marketing campaigns.

There are many ways you can customize digital marketing best practices to sell cars, and here are five tips to get you started.

1. Employ the Simple and Effective Call to Action

When it comes to cars, people love browsing, and your website and other online pages provide them with a perfect opportunity to explore their options and dream about their ideal cars. But when you add effective calls to action to your site, you can convert more of those browsers into potential customers. Make sure you have a call to action on your home page, landing pages, social media sites, and other auto dealer marketing materials.

And the call to action doesn’t have to be just to buy a car—here are some other car dealership marketing ideas for your call to action:

  • Downloading a car comparison chart
  • Reading a car buying guide
  • Getting special promotions or offers
  • Contacting the dealership about trade-in options

You can gather sales leads by offering these items to visitors when they sign up.

2. Take Advantage of Social Media

Social media is an extremely underused tool for many car dealerships, and there are plenty of ways you can work Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, YouTube, and other sites to find new customers and engage previous ones. Social sites are a great place to share information about the automotive industry, keep customers updated on what’s in your lot, engage readers with interesting and shareable content and fun videos, and for customer service. And just as importantly, social signals in the form of likes and retweets are used in Google’s algorithm when ranking websites, so the more you share and the wider your audience, the better your website will rank.

3. Personalize Your Marketing

In this day and age, there are so many analytics tools available that you can customize your automotive dealership marketing based on the individual needs and likes of each customer. For example, say you send out a monthly e-newsletter, and three customers immediately click the link to your truck catalog page. In the future, you can customize your car dealer digital marketing campaigns for those customers by focusing on all things truck.

That’s just one example of how car dealer online marketing tactics can be personalized for visitors.

4. Make Sure All Content Is Responsive and Mobile-Friendly

Did you know that nearly half of all consumers use smartphones when shopping for cars? This means if your website isn’t responsive and mobile-friendly, then your potential customers will find a dealership’s that is. You can also consider creating an app just for your dealership so customers can easily browse your current selection and compare pricing.

5. Establish Yourself as an Authority

For most people, buying a car is a big deal. But if you establish yourself as an authority on the subject, then customers will come to you for help and will trust what you have to say over your competitors. So how do you build authority for a car dealership? Keep your website fresh and updated. Create engaging content that will be of interest to your customers. Provide resources and useful information through all your contact points (at the dealership, on your website, on social media), publish well-written white papers and ebooks about the auto industry, and have great customer service representatives as the face of your company.

Digital marketing can be a hugely beneficial tool for automotive dealers—in fact, it’s the only way to stay competitive in the digital age. There are lots of ways you can use digital marketing best practices and tailor them to your customers, and these five tips will help get you started, help you find new customers right away, and help you retain loyal customers for years to come.

Learn how Lead to Conversion™ can help increase traffic and leads for your auto dealership online.