Gear Up: Fun Tips for Boosting Dealership Awareness

by Jayme Nelson

It can be easy for your dealership to lose its way in the digital age, where “likes” and “retweets” sometimes overshadow handshakes. But sometimes, the best way to keep your business front and center is through building relationships face to face.

That means not only building relationships with the people that come into your dealership, but also with the people that make up your community. Here are some creative, fun and rewarding ways to engage the community and boost awareness of your dealership.

Go Big. Go Really Big.

A slick, subtle slogan is nice. But a catchy turn of phrase isn’t likely to keep your name on the town’s tongue. A huge display, on the other hand, could make your dealership a community landmark. This MINI Cooper dealership in Wisconsin already had an eye-catching display with its model product parked on the side of its building.

Unique auto dealership signage
Photo credit: FASTSIGNS

They could have easily stopped there, but the only thing more interesting than a car on the side of a building is a car equipped with twin 16-foot rockets on the side of a building.

Unique auto dealership signs
Photo Credit: FASTSIGNS

Add fog and an employee dressed as an astronaut, and now you not only have stunning auto dealership signage, but also an identity as a fun, boundary-pushing business.

Unique auto dealership signs
Photo Credit: FASTSIGNS

Partner with Charities

Vehicle graphics
Photo credit: FASTSIGNS

Signing an oversized check for charity is an honorable gesture, but going the extra mile with local charities can be a rewarding experience that also raises the profile of your auto dealership. As the holiday season approaches, consider partnering with a food bank or hosting a toy drive. Your dealership employees could deliver the toys or goods in a promotional car marked with vehicle graphics.

In an industry that can sometimes suffer from unfair stereotyping, linking your business with a worthy cause is a win-win for your dealership and your community.

Host an Event

Auto dealership event
Photo credit: Auto Dealer Today

An event, a contest, a party, whatever the format, getting people together to have fun is usually a sound strategy. This Wichita, Kan., Ford dealership boosted awareness by hosting a singing competition modeled after the popular “American Idol.”

Instead of singing Top 40 hits and retro classics, the dealership asked contestants to compose and perform a dealership jingle. The contest brought in crowds of up to 300 in the final rounds, and dealership manager Phil Nightingale deemed it “a huge success.”

Be Active at Local Sporting Events

Auto dealership signs on scoreboard
Photo credit: Porch

As high school fall sports come to a close and winter sports get into full swing, there are plenty of opportunities to support the local team. By sponsoring a broadcast, posting auto dealership signs on scoreboards or using banners or vehicle decals on a homecoming float, your dealership can become synonymous with game day. The local high school teams are a huge source of community pride, and your loyalty could be returned in the long run.

Modern marketing techniques are new and exciting, but don’t forget the tried-and-true techniques that have kept businesses in the public eye for ages. Be creative, have fun and do a little good along the way to boost awareness for your auto dealership.


Resources

http://blog.palmeradagency.com/blog/bid/300781/Brand-Awareness-for-Auto-Dealerships
http://www.autodealermonthly.com/channel/dps-office/article/story/2012/02/dealers-get-creative-with-event-marketing.aspx
https://cafegive.com/blog/sandra-morris/how-auto-dealers-benefit-giving-back#.ViAVwn6rRhE

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