This year has been a great time of learning for me. You see, this year was the year I decided to get into better physical shape. I’ve reached the place in life where my doctor likes to poke and prod me in more and more invasive ways, and my medicine cabinet has the appearance of a “better living through chemistry” philosophy.
So I decided to do something about it. For real this time.
I did the research. I looked at all the crazy “Eat the food, lose the weight!” products, stand on this board and do the twist “workout” gadgets, pills, and “cleanses” that everyone likes to talk about. Frankly, it all reeks of B.S.
IF (and that’s a very big, generous IF), any of that stuff works AT ALL, the gains are extremely short lived, and often your condition ends up worse later than when you started. Prove me wrong.
I’m not a particularly complicated guy, and I am a big believer in Occam’s Razor (the simplest theory is likely the correct one). So in February (I waited until the New Years resolutions faded), I joined a gym. I set my alarm clock for the time I used to go to bed as a young person, and I got my very large butt up and went. I picked things up and put them down. A lot. 5 days a week. I’m not gonna lie, in the beginning everything hurt and I was positive I would die. Then I was afraid I might not. It was rough.
But something started to happen. I could pick up bigger things, and everything quit hurting all the time. I started to feel – not just better – but pretty good, actually.
And the scale started to be friendlier. And I began to look like a kid wearing his dad’s clothes. And while initially I really hated getting up earlier, something else happened. I started to actually look forward to getting up and going in the morning.
And then I was waking up without the alarm clock.
Then, I decided to up the ante by adding cardio to the mix. I spent a ton of money to buy jump ropes that I would hopefully feel obligated to use because of the cost. It worked. Now everything hurt again and I was dying. Then it got better. And so did my conditioning.
The point of my sharing all of this isn’t to talk about me. It’s so you’ll understand what I mean when I say that I’ve found the magic bullet. Many people are looking for magic bullets in a lot of different areas of their personal or business lives, and they’re expecting that they’ll be EASY. That’s not how it works. I believe that magic bullets exist – but they are anything but easy to execute. The magic isn’t in the execution, it’s in the RESULTS.
So let me bring this around and make it relevant for us.
Since we at PSM Marketing have become full-house, in-house marketing providers, it’s been very enlightening to see the different levels of commitment that dealers across the country have to the business of marketing their dealerships.
Some folks are all-in, some are a bit half-hearted, and others are very hit and miss. It reminds me of the different types of folks you see at the gym.
There are guys that you see there every day. In fact, when they aren’t there you wonder where they are. They are in great shape. And they stay that way by showing up. They have the routines down, the habit formed, and reap the rewards of consistency over time.
The half-hearted gym folks show up a couple of times per week, and usually walk on the treadmill (because that’s easier than the elliptical). They don’t walk particularly fast, and are usually watching the television. They aren’t sweating. They never lift or push themselves very hard. The rewards they reap from this are minimal at best. I find them to be undetectable, actually. And from what I’ve seen, eventually they simply disappear.
The hit and miss folks are the most pitiful. I really feel bad for them. They’re usually the two 40+ year old housewives, or the 40+ married couple who sign up for the 6:30 A.M. high intensity interval training class because they want to get in shape. 15 minutes in, they have had their butts handed to them, and because they’re in bad shape and completely overexerting themselves, they’re unable to walk for two weeks. They wake up on day two and promise each other that they’ll never make that mistake again, and don’t return.
Some dealerships are all in when it comes to the business of marketing their dealerships. They may have started simply, doing the things they initially learned. They may have started with a website. Later dialing in SEO best practices. Seeing some success, they likely bolted on Google Ads, and maybe Facebook advertising. Those small, incremental successes provided the confidence to begin email advertising – which really fueled success. Harvesting social proof through reviews came next, using a ninja style mobile app, which allowed their sales staff to ask for them at the best possible time. Maybe lastly, these are the guys that run at least one (sometimes two) Sharp Shooter campaigns per month, driving leads to a survey site and crowds of people to their dealership. These guys are reaping the rewards of executing the routines, having the habits formed, and consistency over time. I’m not guessing here. Any dealership that does this becomes a juggernaut in their market. If this isn’t you, you’ve already said their name in your head.
Half-hearted dealerships are those that want to do the right thing when it comes to their marketing, but let’s not get crazy. Let’s not do anything that’s too hard, or requires too much follow-up. Maybe we’ll do an email newsletter. You know, something unquantifiable with no call to action. Hey – maybe a billboard, radio, or T.V. commercial! Sometimes, maybe a couple of times a year, they might do a Sharp Shooter. They’re hard, but they drive a lot of traffic on the day of the event, so even if we don’t do any follow up afterwards on the leads, we can feel pretty good about it. The effort isn’t excessive, and neither are the overall results.
The hit and miss dealerships…. In the South we say, “Bless their hearts.” Trust me, here in Georgia you don’t want your heart blessed….
These are the guys that still think the Yellow Pages are a good idea. These poor souls are pretty clueless about marketing in general, much less the specifics of digital, print, direct, or branding. They’ve heard that marketing is something they should be doing, and maybe one day they’ll get around to giving it a try. At some point, one of our amazing sales reps signs them up for a Sharp Shooter campaign. Since we do all the initial legwork, the response is predictable. Big.
The picture here is like a poor, overweight, middle aged, person trying to jump on a treadmill going 20 MPH. They will likely survive it, but there will be bruising and pain. The initial response is “Are you CRAZY! We aren’t going to do THAT again!”
The whole point here is that the magic bullet is the hard work, the routines, habits, and consistency. What kind of marketing do you have? What kind of marketing do you WANT to have? If you aren’t already, I would encourage you to be an all-in dealership. That doesn’t mean that you dive in and do everything right now, like flipping a switch. You simply have to decide that’s what you want to do. You don’t go into a gym and start benching 200lbs. – but you DO have to go, and you DO have to start lifting SOMETHING. You build up, and over time the results come. Your team begins to see your commitment, and they buy in. Those that don’t, find their happiness elsewhere – that’s going to happen, and that’s okay.
In time, you’ll look at your dealership and see what it accomplished by those routines, habits, and consistency. It will be amazing. I promise.
If you’re interested in making the commitment to exceptional marketing (and in turn, profits), we’d like to help. We’re expert trainers, and subject matter experts when it comes to marketing. Not only that, since we’re full-house in-house, we own a marketing ‘gym.’
Give us a call and we’ll be happy to partner with you to bolt on all the best practices that will make your dealership the one that others compare themselves to.
So what’s it going to be? Reasons or results?