How can a business survive and prosper when every indicator points in the wrong direction? One headline in a recent issue of Fortune magazine suggests “Fight the urge to slash sales and marketing budget”. Why?
“Studies have shown that the brands that cut ad spending during a recession tend to lose market awareness and cede brand recognition to those who continued to invest. In a less noisy ad environment, it’s easier to be seen and heard–and it’s less expensive to get in front of those customers.”
This is already common knowledge among the world’s advertising professionals, but seriously and mysteriously underestimated by many CEOs and CFOs.
PUSHING SALES NOW OR BUILDING PREFERENCE
Admittedly, the same advertising professionals may have different views regarding the relative business value of tactical sales support vs strategic brand building. The best answer is that virtually nobody, especially a relatively small business like a car dealership, can afford to choose:
A sales campaign that does not promote the vendor is destined to be as shallow and weak as a corporate campaign that does not sell products or services.
In the automotive industry, the focus of manufacturers is typically about branding and promoting new vehicle models. In contrast, the main current interest of the dealers is often to sell used cars, and related services. Few dealers spend a lot on building their own brands.
BUILD DEALER PREFERENCE INTO USED CAR ADS
A major share of the dealer’s sales promotion budget is typically invested online, promoting each specific car. Traditionally, these ads offer limited potential for the cars to “stand out” or for promoting dealer services or qualities. But a new breed of automated video ads effectively solves that problem.
The previously mentioned Fortune article also highlights the importance of avoiding deep discounts. One way of doing that is by increasing the buyer’s excitement with more engaging presentations of your products. This is an area where a high-quality video presentation can make a huge difference. This may sound like an impossibly difficult and costly alternative for used cars. But that problem has already been solved with a fully automated solution resulting in lower total sales costs.
2023 is most likely going to be a challenging year, a year that will effectively separate the chaff from the wheat. To a certain extent it’s about guts, daring to think strategically in times of immediate struggles. And making the right strategic choices is bound to open new doors for forward-looking sales and marketing professionals.