Monday, September 22, 2014

Three Ways to Get Customers to Your Dealership This Fall

The season for pumpkin spice lattes and Ugg boots is upon us. Autumn officially starts this week, so we can't help but think of how different businesses use the season to their advantages.

Gap has a fall discount code, Starbucks releases their fall-only Pumpkin Spice latte and Yankee Candle has an entire line of candles dedicated to fall.

We know you're not selling lattes and candles, but your dealership can use similar tactics to attract more customers. Here are a few tips on how you can use special discounts, limited time offers and pumpkin overload to pump up your business this fall.

Special Discounts

When temperatures start to drop, vehicle maintenance becomes pretty important. Most people know that cooler weather affects their cars but might not know how to prepare for the changes. Use this as an opportunity to draw customers to your dealership for quick check-ups on their cars with a little discount.

Rather than sending out a direct mail piece that could be thrown away, broadcast a prerecorded message reminding customers to prepare their cars for cold weather. Include a "weatherizing discount" for a limited time to attract customers. You can even go so far as to personalize the messages with the customers' names and unique vehicles (if you don't know how to do that, we know a guy).

Limited Time Offers

HubSpot found that limited time offers produce nearly a 10 percent higher response rate from customers than a regular offer. Capitalize on this by offering fall colors at a discounted price or handing out fall freebies with the purchase of fall-colored cars. As HubSpot mentions in their research, limited time offers create a sense of urgency and prompt customers to buy. Don't let that get away from you!

To track the effectiveness of your offers, include a unique toll-free number (TFN) on your emails, in your phone calls or on direct mail pieces. By giving each of them a different TFN, you'll be able to analyze how many people call about the different offers and therefore easily measure your ROI on the campaigns.


Pumpkin Overload

We're not suggesting that you serve pumpkin lattes and fill the air with pumpkin scent (although if you did, it would be heavenly). But rather, be the host for a day at your local pumpkin patch to increase your dealership's brand awareness. There are plenty of dealerships around most towns, so you have to do something to make yours stand out.

Send invitations to your local customers and prospects to get them familiar with your name and generate buzz. To make it a fun event, host a contest in which there is a winning pumpkin somewhere in the patch. The prize can be a free oil change, tire rotation or any other maintenance service. Getting involved in your community shows customers that you care and helps strengthen their loyalty.

What are some things you do during the fall at your dealership? Let us know in the comments!

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