Archive for February, 2014

Opportunities in Automotive

Friday, February 21st, 2014

by Susan Novicki

Seeing the BMW ad for the “i series” during the opening ceremony of the Olympics and all of the new car introductions at the Chicago Auto Show this week, including the sport hybrid version of the Toyota Camry and the electric version of the Kia Soul, prompted me to realize the continued tremendous revenue opportunities in the automotive industry.

All three of these models, for example, will be rolling out and hitting the dealer showrooms in April.With any new car introduction there is the opportunity for presence marketing.  Every manufacturer has dollars allotted to introduce the new vehicles – both at the Tier 1 and Tier 2 levels and this year will be no exception.

We all know what a great year 2013 was – with over 16 million vehicles sold in the US – and 2014 should continue.  January was not a stellar month and many manufacturers dropped in same month sales from last year but the weather was a huge factor – as was the huge surge in sales in November and December.But Edmonds, among others, is still expecting this year to hit sales of over 16.4 million vehicles.

Every manufacturer has to aggressively showcase their car and this does not mean just placing national spot ads on broadcast for example.That is one piece of the puzzle.  Realize how many manufacturers showcased new vehicles during the Super Bowl – and how many of those teased and even released the ads on social media prior to the game.The next step is getting the cars to the people, getting targeted consumers into the cars and test driving the new models.This is where Tier 2 money comes into play.

I am on sales calls having just these discussions with many manufacturers right now.Budgets are still being finalized but one thing is certain – everyone is frantically focused on getting their cars in front of potential buyers before their competition does.The race for market share is at a frenzied pace and we can help manufacturers and dealer groups engage their key customers and drive traffic into the dealerships.

Think broad and deep – don’t just call one decision-maker but have conversations at the regional level, the agency level and the dealer group.

Understand what they are trying to accomplish and who their target customer is.

Do a solid need analysis to determine their objectives and create a concept that will meet all of their objectives within a budget range that fits for them.

Focus on engaging that consumer in every way we can to further answer the objectives of these clients.

And have a blast creating the idea, closing the deal, executing the program and getting the next homework assignment!

Shift the Conversation

Friday, February 7th, 2014

by Ginny Speaks

I have been reading a lot about content marketing this year.  This is a hot topic in the online social marketing discussion groups and made me start thinking about the sales cycle and the content of our discussions throughout the whole sales process.

As a media marketing specialist, where do you spend most of your conversation?  Do you talk most about your format and reach?  How about the strength of your numbers, market ranking, and deliverables?  Or, better yet, the deal/package of the week?  Don’t get me wrong.  These are all important factors, yet out of the gate with a new business prospect I encourage you to begin shifting your conversations from a media one to a consumer behavior discussion.

Capturing new business begins by educating the prospect on how you can help their business/brand get the consumer engaged, to act.  The delivery part comes after an objective has been established and the assignment is captured.   Start the conversation shift with these questions:

  • What is the most important objective you would like to accomplish with your marketing campaign?   Is it getting the consumer in the door, products in consumer’s hands, or driving sales via couponing?  If not one of these, then what?
  • Currently how do your consumers interact and engage with your product, service or company?  What has been the most effective means of reaching them?
  • Who is your current core customer and is there a new customer you would like to see more of?  (Include psychographics in this discussion, so that you can establish a consumer profile and lifestyle to reach)
  • When evaluating your current marketing strategies would you say you are more focused on awareness or call to action?

Once you have flushed out a specific consumer objective, then you can direct the conversation accordingly.  Follow these 5 simple steps on every call and you will move the sale forward each and every time.

  1. Define consumer/brand/company objectives
  2. Establish likes/dislikes and marketing channels
  3. Explore ideas and direction of strategy
  4. Recap discussion
  5. Agree on next steps

This shift in conversation takes practice, but once the shift takes place, not only you will see an increase in capturing assignments but your closing ratio will too!