All great websites are built around content, but not all content is great at expanding your business. For many marketers in the automotive industry, making a sales pitch to prospective car buyers is where the content marketing strategy starts and ends. Often, what’s missing in these strategies is a plan to reach potential customers before they even start their search for a vehicle.
Content that appeals to consumers interested in purchasing your dealership’s vehicles or services is beneficial, no doubt. It should form the backbone of any successful website blog or content strategy. After all, when drivers in your area take to the internet to hunt for a new car, you’ll want your landing pages, blog posts, and inventory to be listed first on the SERP.
DealerSocket’s DealerFire digital marketing team looks beyond immediate conversions. We can create non-automotive local content that will expand your customer base before they even start looking for a new vehicle.
Building Relationships With New Customers
Broadly speaking, there are three types of consumers you can target with your website content strategy:
- Consumers who are already aware of and/or loyal to your brand, regardless of whether they’re in the market for a car
- Consumers who are not aware of your brand, but need to buy a car
- Consumers who are neither aware of your brand nor currently shopping for a car
The first group is composed of loyal customers who are already likely to visit your website or dealership when an automotive need arises. The second group may not be familiar with your dealership, but through locally targeted landing page content highlighting new models, specific services, or current deals, it will be able to find your website in a search.
The third group is commonly ignored by dealerships and agencies yet flush with marketing opportunity. At DealerFire, we know how to exploit this opportunity. We create locally focused non-automotive content for our clients’ website blogs where potential customers can find information on things they care about, like holiday events, festivals, or even election voting details.
Automotive blog content designed to rank on a broad level, regardless of location, is still highly valuable to your website. This type of content is “evergreen” and can attract large amounts of traffic on a consistent basis. It helps establish your dealership as an authority in the industry and improve your domain authority amongst search engines. Non-automotive content directed to your local audience takes advantage of opportunities other companies don’t while ensuring your website is seen by local residents who may not have come across your brand otherwise. This content can help a dealership introduce itself to consumers outside of traditional spaces, proactively increasing brand awareness before an individual has begun the car buying process.
This content works. “Fireworks”-related blog posts brought in nearly 48,000 page views to DealerFire client sites during the months of June and July 2016. This past summer, our digital marketing team was able to take advantage of the Pokémon Go craze to direct nearly 67,000 page views to client websites. For those who view these posts, it can be refreshing for a company to provide valuable content without making a sales pitch, which goes a long way in building the foundation of a relationship.
Will Customers Come Back?
Of course, in the end, the goal is to sell cars. Since this type of unique, non-automotive local content is about building a long-term audience rather than making a quick sell, we want these individuals to come back to you to buy their next car.
Don’t let a high bounce rate fool you. Effective local content is designed with a linking strategy in mind that leads to other local or relatable automotive content that will help consumers become even more aware of your brand. This awareness may lead them into entering the market for a new vehicle.
Even visitors that don’t become customers that day now see your dealership as a source for local news, events, and information. If you consistently create content that reaches out to the community, these individuals are likely to find more of your content in the future, which increases their awareness and understanding of what your brand offers. When automotive needs do arise, your dealership will be the first one on their mind and one that they already feel a sense of loyalty to, resulting in a familiarity and comfort they don’t have with other dealerships in the area.
Non-automotive local content takes the transactional relationship consumers are bombarded with on a daily basis and evolves it into a deeper relationship that has the potential to build a loyal customer base before a vehicle has even been purchased. And that is what effective content marketing is all about.