Marketing budgets have shifted dramatically amidst the spread of COVID-19. Establishing Digital North Star Metrics is a critical step to help you understand, plan, and adapt you marketing budgets. (Now’s a good time to do that!)
Welcome back to another Wednesday Workshop from DealerOn.
Online Marketing for dealers has always been measured in absolute terms and metrics like – “what’s my Cost Per Click?” or “What’s my cost per VDP View”? Vendors have always focused on the flavor of the day or the trendiest metric from the latest conference.
Today I’ll be talking to you about establishing Digital North Star Metrics. They’re a critical tool in helping you understand and plan your marketing budgets in a way that moves the needle for you no matter how the winds are blowing. Let’s get started!
First, ESTABLISH YOUR CORE MARKETING PRIORITIES – What are you most interested in as a dealer? Are leads your singular focus? Do you need to re-enforce a great image in your community or rebuild your brand? Do you want to conquest other markets because you’ve dominated your own backyard? Establishing core priorities allow you to see your marketing agencies and the campaigns they run with a much wider lens than the single metric or shiny object they’re trying to push your way. It’s also a great practice to re-establish these priorities every quarter or so.
Second, KNOW YOUR CUSTOMER– If you look at your data over the last three or five years, how have the customers in your marketplace found you? Have you seen more phone ups, text ups, third party leads? Do they lease more or finance more? What interested them about your dealership specifically – your prices, your reputation? The answers to a lot of these questions are rooted in clean CRM data and broader data hygiene and analytics practices – something we will cover in another Wednesday workshop.
Third, IDENTIFY THE MARKETING CHANNELS that help you meet the marketing priorities you’ve established. For instance, if your most pressing need is to improve your reputation in the marketplace – pouring thousands of dollars into display advertising probably isn’t the right advice from your agency. That said, if you’re a new dealership – creating a curated video and display strategy might be the right answer. Always ensure the channels you choose truly help you move the needle on your priorities and reaches consumers where they are most likely to find you. Any great agency will work hand in hand to establish this for you, and if you find your agency NOT doing so, it’s a HUGE RED FLAG.
Fourth, ESTABLISH YOUR NORTH STAR METRICS – Once you’ve established your priorities, understood the trends and patterns in your customers behavior and identified key marketing channels – its important you establish the metrics that matter most TAILORED TO EVERY CHANNEL you‘ve chosen. For example, if your goal is to drive brand engagement, then measuring clicks to your site off your YouTube video or Facebook video is not meaningful – instead, focus on the metrics that truly show you how your consumers are engaging with you. If your goal is to drive leads, then every channel you choose should be focused on DRIVING or ASSISTING in driving leads. Don’t let your vendor get away with saying Video is the most important thing on the market – if they can’t prove to you that video is driving a meaningful lift in your lead volume. Remember, NORTH STAR METRICS ALLOW YOU TO SEE PAST THE SHINY OBJECT YOUR AGENCY IS TRYING TO SHOW YOU and focus on what moves the needle FOR YOU.
Lastly, ENSURE THE REPORTS YOU GET SHOW THE METRICS YOU WANT TO MEASURE – Once you’ve determined your north star metrics, it’s important that your vendor is able to showcase these metrics on their scheduled calls with you. It’s also important to hold them accountable to the targets you‘ve agreed to each month. Too often, dealers get caught in the web of “industry averages”. While Industry averages are great, they should only serve as a benchmark to beat, not the benchmark you settle for. If you have any questions, our helpful advertising strategists are happy to talk to you about establishing your north star metrics.
That’s all the time we have left for today’s workshop.
As always, if you have comments or questions, leave ‘em down below and we’ll get back to you shortly.
Thanks for watching.
We’ll see you next week with another Wednesday Workshop from DealerOn!