What is the old phrase? Change is inevitable? No one has to talk to too many dealers to find out they know there have been massive changes in the past 5 years. Probably the greatest change is how they get their message out to the buyer and what do they do to attract that customer. Hunting and fishing are huge pastimes here in South Dakota. The shotgun is the treasured weapon for most of those hunters and was the tool most dealers used for decades to “bag” the game they were after. Like the hunter, they traversed the fields trying to scare up the bird for a chance to take a shot at it. Imagine if you will, that those fields where you and your buddy were the only ones hunting, now had 50 other hunters looking for the same bird. How does one now get his limit? My suggestion would be to know exactly where the bird is, know what attracts the bird and become a great shot with a rifle. This anaolgy is exactly my prescription for dealers. The internet, used as a rifle, is a very effective hunting tool. Thanks to Google, Yahoo and Bing, we now have a pretty good idea about who is sitting behind that keyboard, what they like and most importantly, what they are looking for. So the question becomes, why would you try to message them with a pick-up truck when they are looking for a compact car? Of course, you wouldn’t. Next, your question becomes, how can I do this afforbably? You may have as many as two dozen specific vehicle types on your lot. Well, of course the first thing would be to prioritize. You aren’t going to invest your prized marketing dollars in a vehicle class where you sold two units in the last 60 days. Go for the volume units first. Create ad campaigns that discuss the benefits of that specific vehicle. Develop videos (a shameless plug for Nichols Media) that you can place on today’s digital marketing channels that will “rifle” the person that has shown they are interested in that type of vehicle. You are saying to yourself, sounds harder than the old way where I bought a 30-60 second ad and put it on the three local broadcast stations? The answer is, it is. However, like anything, if you become the expert at it, it becomes easier with practice. Of course there are partners out there that can can help you. Probably the most important aspect of implementing a plan like this is your method of follow-up. Timelines and accuracy of follow-up messaging is critical. Like the hunter, how good a shot you are, will greatly determine how many birds you bag. Think of us as your guide, let us help you get your limit.