In our last post, we explored the definition of marketing and demonstrated why it’s so important to understand what the goal of your marketing should be. But understanding what marketing is isn’t enough to make your marketing successful. In order to get the most from your marketing budget, you’ve got to have a plan—a road map of how you will achieve success. A system. And that’s the second key to successful automotive marketing.

Success Key #2: Having an effective marketing system to sell your service.

Most people approach their marketing with a “spray and pray” mentality. They just SPRAY it all out there and PRAY something happens as a result. It’s usually not very well thought out and is done with no real rhyme or reason. It just is what it is. Separate pieces of a puzzle, always changing, never measured and definitely not orchestrated into a proven system. But that’s not going to get you results.

Instead, your marketing should be like a musical score—written out in advance, with movements and rests and harmonies strategically sequenced to get results every time. A composer knows how the different parts will affect the thoughts, emotions, and perceptions of the listeners like clockwork, and he uses the tools at his disposal to create the specific effect he wants. You should be able to do the same thing with your marketing.

Most dealers we meet are throwing spaghetti at the wall when it comes to their marketing. They’re desperately trying to find what sticks, and then riding that gimmick until it stops working. Then they throw more spaghetti in order to find the next new gimmick.

This doesn’t make your marketing job or your life very easy or fun. And it also isn’t a duplicable system that produces ongoing results to make your dealership impervious to changes in market conditions.

In order for your marketing to be successful, you must be strategic and create a system. If you have a good system in place, it will deliver a consistent flow of new business time after time.

So stop spraying and praying! Stop throwing a little of your marketing budget at the newspaper and a little at radio and a little at cable and a little at PPC, all the while trying to guess what works. Instead, establish a plan. Strategically decide where you are going to put your money. Then, dominate that media with high frequency, and measure your results to make sure that you’re getting a return from your investment.

Next time we’ll cover the third of The Five Key Of Successful Automotive Marketing, so stay tuned!