This is the final installment of The Five Keys Of Successful Automotive Marketing. If you joined us for the first four keys, you already know how to establish an effective marketing system and write ads that attract more customers and allow you to stop competing on price.

The final key of successful automotive marketing is about harnessing the opportunity of customers you’ve already put the work into earning and helping. We call this getting social proof, but you might know it better as repeat and referral business.

Success Key #5: Get Social Proof

One of the most powerful ways to promote and communicate the value of your dealership is by getting other people who think your dealership experience is great to say it to others.

This is the whole concept of word-of-mouth advertising is built around this phenomenon. Word-of-mouth advertising is arguably one of the most effective forms of advertising because people naturally believe what their friends, family, co-workers, and peers have to say. After all, what would they get out of lying?

However, most business owners believe word-of-mouth advertising is out of their control—that it just happens when it happens and they’re lucky to get it. Many believe it happens automatically by delivering good service.

But both of these statements are actually false! Word-of-mouth advertising is controllable and can be stimulated by a good system.

One way to generate more word-of-mouth is by packaging up your testimonials in the form of print, audio and video and using them in all your communications with prospects, ups and customers.

Use testimonials in your ads, in your consumer guides and in social media. Use audio testimonials on your website, in your radio commercials and your emails. Use video testimonials on your website and in a loop tape in your showroom.

Have your salespeople play actual testimonials of your past customers to their ups on their smartphones. Or play an audio testimonial CD in the vehicle during the test drive.

No one sells your services better to prospects than your really happy past customers. This is one area sadly underused by most dealers.

There you have it, The Five Keys Of Successful Automotive Marketing. With these tools in your toolbox, you can start creating effective marketing for your dealership right away. But reading good information isn’t enough; you have to take action. Many dealers spend a lot of time waiting for the perfect scenario to run an ad, test an idea or make a change at their dealership.

The perfect time never comes and nothing ever gets waiting. Use these keys as a measuring stick with what you are doing in your store. Are you using all five keys? If not, start making changes now to implement some of what you just learned.