If there is one thing many Dealers and OEM’s consistently get wrong with their advertising, it’s that your marketing can’t be all about selling things to people. Instead your marketing should be part of a much larger formula designed to create a connection, an experience that separates you from your competitors.
The products you carry are commodities, and IF your advertising is all about, “Hey you, wanna buy my product?” then you are weakening that connection as opposed to strengthening it, and the experience is similar to shopping for groceries.
There is no real difference between your metal and your competitor’s, or your helmets versus your competitor’s. Just as there is no difference in the Mayfield milk from Publix or Kroger. This leads to the slippery slope of discounting. Inevitably, when improperly executed, advertising often becomes about the thing, the product. Then, since my Mayfield milk is the same as your Mayfield milk, the only way I can attract you to buy from me versus my competitor is, “Cheapest Price.”
Fortunately, you’re not selling milk, washing machines, or grave sites, you’re selling FUN, EXCITEMENT, and ADVENTURE! That’s a huge marketing advantage for us in this industry.
It’s actually depressing when the most exciting thing you have to say about your dealership is, “Wanna buy something today?”, or worse, “We’re the cheapest in town.” This approach is not only bad for you, it’s bad for the brands you sell, it’s bad for your entire market, and hell, by extension it’s bad for the entire Powersports Industry. Teaching enough consumers that all dealers should sell with a deep discount and all buyers should shop and buy based solely on price is a detriment to us all, even the small percentage of dummies who shop solely based on price.
I get it, you’re a dealer and you have no control over the products and the commoditization of what you sell. That’s exactly why you should advertise and sell what you do have control over, what separates you from your competitors, your value proposition, what puts you into a category of ONE rather than a category of many - the worst of which is participating in the discounting war on the Inter-Webs, classified sites, etc.
Here’s what Dan Kennedy has to say about the discounting strategy: “It is fundamentally the selling of confessed inferiority, rather than the selling of asserted superiority. This is a choice you make.”
I was a dealer for many years in both Powersports and Automotive, and I’m a practical person. I certainly understand there are circumstances in which you absolutely must discount to earn the customer’s business. You follow the sales process, you write each customer up at full price, you fight for every dollar and close every single deal humanly possible. I’m not disputing that, what I am disputing is that there are better ways of attracting and retaining the right kinds of customers than lazy low APR finance offers, $1,000 off, $500 over book value for your trade, etc.
Ever hear the saying, “Good, Fast, Cheap, pick two?” It’s a real thing. Google it. It’s true.
My son likes McDonalds after a long day of motos, so against my better judgment I’ve recently been frequenting the establishment more than I care to admit. I’m absolutely astounded at how consistently HORRIBLE the service is. And, at least the food is terrible as well. But, it’s fast and it’s cheap.
Which position do you want to stand for: “We Suck, But We’re Cheap” Or “Premium products with Premium service by Powersports Professionals”?
Famous ad man, David Ogilvy, said: “Have something interesting to say before you spend money saying things.” Price isn’t interesting, but people are. Look at the boom of social media, it’s so addictive because it’s so interesting, and it’s so interesting because it’s about people.
Here at PSM we’ve developed a mobile app that takes a picture of your customer after they’ve made a purchase. Through marketing automation, we send them a congratulations and thanks for their business email with that picture of them and their new ride. Then we send a text or email request to write a review online. We can automatically publish that review and that picture to social media.
We all know that reviews are huge, but so is going the extra mile and creating a connection and an exciting experience by congratulating customers on one of the most exciting purchases they have or will ever make.
Our Sharp Shooter program is one-to-one marketing, from a person to a person, inviting them to an event to have fun first, and creating a whole bunch of leads as a happy by product. Not begging them to buy or peddling a discount.
When these two products are combined they grow new customers, increase retention and referrals (online and offline). They are carefully designed to create a better connection and an improved customer experience. We’d love to share our secret recipe with you, for more information contact us today at 877-242-4472 or visit us online to learn more: www.powersportsmarketing.com.