Image is everything and has been long before Andre Agassi. They say it takes 0.1 seconds to form a lasting impression. When you hear “car dealership” or “car salesman”, an image is usually created in ones mind. For most people, the image may not be positive. Who has the power to change a dealership image from negative to positive?  That’s right, the dealership…

Lets take direct marketing since it is the workhorse and our expertise. A car dealership can take butterball turkey pic$7,000 and do a 10,000 piece direct mail campaign. Lets say they did a “Gobble up Big Savings” and offered a Thanksgiving Turkey voucher for coming in, since its that time of the year.  If they get a 1% response (or 100 people), that would be considered average. If they sold 12% of them, then of course they sold 12 cars, also considered average. At the end of the day, they got some traffic, sold some cars, no harm, no fowl (sorry, couldn’t resist).

Now, lets take the same $7,000 budget. Except, lets focus on your dealership image. If you changed up your direct marketing mailer from offering a turkey to helping parents with teenage kids between the ages of 15-20 stay safe behind the wheel of a 3,000 pound vehicle. Now what happens to the dealership image?

Motor vehicle crashes are the number one cause of death among young people ages 15-20 in the U.S.

Postits4Teens4This is not just a direct mail campaign filled with stats. Most of us know or know of a teen killed from or as a result of drunk driving in High School. This is a campaign that makes people think. This is a campaign that includes “Post-it notes” for parents to leave around the house where their kids will see them, that are reminders to buckle up, don’t text and drive, don’t drink and drive, be careful, we love you. This is powerful. This is life changing (or life saving). This is Image changing.

Will the results from the “Saving Teen Lives Campaign” match the “Turkey Mailer”? I don’t know if the instant success will be as good. But teenage kids want a car and parents either buy them a safe used vehicle or do the “hand me down” then buy a new one.  Either way, its your business.

The image however of the dealership and how your local community views you will change forever. In fact if you make it a passion of yours to make sure that every teenage kid in your community understands the importance of buckling up, not drinking and driving, not texting, and not being distracted, not only will the dealership image change, YOU WILL SAVE LIVES AND THAT MEANS MORE CUSTOMERS IN THE LONG RUN. NOT ONLY IS THAT A Postits4Teens3GOOD THING, IT EVEN FELLS GOOD…

There is so much more to all this. Its still business. Its still about separating your dealership from the pack. If you call the local media, tell them you’re giving away turkey vouchers, they would say “so what”. If you said your kicking off a “Saving Teen Lives Campaign”, that’s a story. You can now add “PR” to your direct mail marketing campaign.  

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