Overstock Vehicles in Your Lot? Wish You Could Just Give ‘Em the Old Heave-Ho?

December is almost here and that means it’s time for some dealership house-cleaning.  Gotta somehow move those older vehicles off the lot to make way for the shiny new 2017’s.  Most dealerships have, by now, planned out their end-of-year sales campaigns to do just that… and then everyone crosses their fingers.

The good news is that over the recent few years, holiday shopping season has been extended in the minds consumers to include automotive purchases and not just items that fit under a tree.  Some people even wait till the end of the year to see what incentives dealerships are offering before deciding to buy.  Customers are aware that some pricing incentives are greater at this time of the year because of the sales manager’s desire to have overstock sold and have yearly targets met.  What was once considered as a slow time of year, has boomed into a selling season in itself!

According to an Edmunds.com’s car shopping trend analysis article, 2015 had the strongest December new vehicle sales on record and it was the best sales month since July of 2005.

With this in mind, selling your overstock before year-end is possible with sales events, good incentives and the kind of truly effective communication that’ll get your campaign noticed.  Only TAARGA has Confirmation Marketing that’ll do just that.  We’ll help you seamlessly send out personalized emails, text messages with response capability and voicemails to all your customer contacts.

The customers are there and they’re waiting for your end-of-year deals.  It’s time to let them know you’ve got them.  We know you weren’t really going to give your overstock the old heave-ho.  Now your older vehicles can leave the lot with happy customers and leave you happy with completed sales targets.

Every Customer Tells a Story

We invite you to sit down and take a look at your customer database.  Perhaps you see a list of customers, what services were rendered for them and what they have bought from you over a period of time.

If you haven’t already, it’s time to think of your customers as fascinating characters in the lifecycle of vehicle ownership.  It’s like a book that starts with purchasing a vehicle.  The narrative ensues with services performed and relationships being built between service specialists and customers.  The story reaches its end when the vehicle can be driven no more and perhaps a sequel begins at the purchase of a new vehicle.

In our last blog, we talked about two key ingredients to soup-up your Black Friday campaign and noted gift ideas for different kinds of customers.  Within your own customer database, if you take the steps to group your customers based on what they purchased in the past, you are on your way to targeting the right gift ideas to the right customers.

As you get to know your customers, you’ll find out all kinds of interesting tidbits of information to help you populate your customer database. A few examples of facts, preferences and concerns include:

  • Type of Customer: Male or female, single, married, with family
  • Age
  • Income bracket
  • Vehicle owned: Model, age, added features
  • Purchasing trends
  • Frequency and types of services rendered
  • Customer feedback

Turn these customers into fascinating characters; each one with a story; each one with particular interests and concerns.  When they are grouped with similar customers, you have the right setting to personalize your Black Friday campaigns and make them super-effective.  Add TAARGA Confirmation Marketing and we’ll send truly personalized emails to each group of customers you have.  We can also send and receive instant texts and voice campaigns to really get your Black Friday campaign noticed.

Every customer tells a story and we at TAARGA know how to make your customers feel like you know them.  That’s how relationships are built.

2 Key Ingredients to Soup-Up your Dealership’s Black Friday Campaign

If Black Friday is as hot an event as a stovetop, picture a sales-phabet soup being simmered by dealerships far and wide.  It’s like a giant stockpot of discounts, deals and offers that make customers salivate in anticipation of Black Friday.

With so many sales floating around, how can you stand out and be the one that gets on the spoon and gets to the customer?  The answer lies in two key considerations that, if utilized right, can become real drivers to Black Friday success.  – The veritable spices that’ll get your sales noticed.

Ingredient #1:  Differentiation.

Don’t just offer sales.  Be different.  Be creative.  Give them a theme and make it holiday-centric.  Focus on helping customers get that perfect gift for those they cherish and offer ideas that are, of course, vehicle related and more exciting than just discounts.

For example, detailing may make an excellent gift for anyone who likes to show off his or her vehicle.  For those that take care of others or those with older vehicles, certificates for parts or tune-ups would make a great gift.  For people that have a vehicle that is almost an extension of themselves, (you know who they are; muscle car owners and owners of opposite-sex magnet type vehicles), many gifts come to mind ranging from spoilers to lighting accessories to promotional apparel.

Once you have come up with great vehicle gift ideas and a good promotion to go with, add ingredient #2 to get your Black Friday campaign all souped up.

Ingredient #2: Personalized customer targeting

Focus on the different types of customers you have and match your holiday gift ideas with the information you have about them.  Add your promotional campaign and send these customers only the offers that they would be interested in.  

Avoid mass emailing and don’t over-email.  It is futile to promote your campaign to people who have no interest in what you’re selling or to send them multiple emails with different promotions in the hope that they’ll be interested in one of them.  You run the risk of over-promoting and putting people off that may otherwise buy from you someday.

Its called getting it right the first time.  This is where TAARGA can help you streamline your customer targeting, make it personal and take it to the next level.  With the customer specifics you have in your database and TAARGA’s Confirmation Marketing technology, we can splice the right promotion to the right customer and send it to them by email, text or voicemail.

Be hot and ready for Black Friday with TAARGA. Soup’s on, folks!

Use your Customer Loyalty Program to Boost Service Appointments this November

Ah, November – biting-cold rain, wailing winds and winter maintenance on every dealership’s mind.  The last month of autumn eggs on thoughts of quotas and how to get customers out of the bitter cold into the warm hearth of service departments. Ah, it brings on visions of customers happily sipping a Keurig, Nespresso, or the like, in the comfort of a plush seat in the waiting room.

So how do you bring customers inside without the lure of a fireplace or a steam bath?  It’s easy.  One thing you can do, is think about how you can use your customer loyalty program to get them into your dealership now.  Most local mechanics out there are too small to be able to offer loyalty programs, so use your advantage and give your customers another reason to choose their dealer for winter vehicle maintenance instead of “the other guy mechanic”.

If you don’t have a customer loyalty program as of yet, it may be worth considering as 75% of companies that use loyalty programs, generate a positive ROI according to a MarketingProfs infographic.

Customer loyalty programs are all about keeping the customers you already have. Let’s look at a few more stats.  83% of customers agree that loyalty programs make them more likely to do business with companies and 67% of returning customers spend more money than new customers.  In fact, did you know that it is 6 to 7 times more expensive to get a new customer than it is to keep one?

Stats aside, if your dealership has a customer loyalty program in place, now is a great time to get your customers to cash in some points on winter maintenance. Getting the family vehicle winter-ready is on people’s minds, but with life’s busy schedules, perhaps it’s not priority until the first snowfall hits.

Offer your customers the opportunity to apply points on winter tune-ups or a set of new tires in exchange for paying for other services.  You could very well generate sales on services that customers might have otherwise left for another time.

TAARGA is ready to help you bring in those loyalty program customers.  With our Confirmation Marketing, we’ll help you let your customers know that you appreciate their loyalty by offering points redemption on certain winter maintenance that isn’t normally covered.  Send personalized emails to your loyalty program members or incentivize by text or voicemail.  You can even receive text message responses to your campaign.

Do more than boost waiting room ambiance with a Keurig machine or plush seats. Boost service appointments and visits to your comfy waiting room with TAARGA and your customer loyalty program.

Halloween Marks The Start Of Tire Season And Scary It Will Be If Those Tires Aren’t Checked!

It’s like the powers-that-be ring the bell just after Halloween to hail the beginning of everything TIRE in the automotive world.  You have a job to do to get your customers to not only consider checking or changing their tires, but to get them to come to your dealership for the servicing.

With the competition wanting as much of the tire business as you, how do you get an edge?  The good news is that there is a lot you can do to get your customers interested in tires, besides just offering them a deal, like everyone else.

Educate your customers so that they know that it’s not just about the sale.  It’s about their safety.  Road conditions, climate and even driving habits can affect tire treads over time.  Neglecting tire maintenance, for example, not ensuring correct air pressure, will definitely affect tire life span and need they’ll need to get checked.  Also, improper tire usage like using summer tires in winter or mixing tire types will be cause for concern.  Remind your customers that typical driving will cause tire treads to wear out in about three to four years. At this point, they need to be checked by a professional and possibly be replaced.

A fun way to earn customer interest in tires is to introduce them to the penny test in the U.S. and the quarter test in Canada.

  • The American way:

        Take a penny and with the Lincoln’s head upside down, put it between the treads of the tire. If his head is buried, this is good.  If you still can see the top of Lincoln’s head, the tread is worn down too much and it’s time to go shopping.

  • The Canadian way:

Take a quarter and with the Queen’s head upside down, put it between the treads of the tire. If her head is covered by tread, this is good.  If the top of her head is entirely visible, it’s also time to go shopping.

TAARGA can help you avoid being like every other service center and just throw deals at your customers.  We’ll get them interested in coming to YOU for servicing. With TAARGA’s Confirmation Marketing, you can let them know that it’s easy to make an appointment now, before the end of November craze.  Send personalized emails at the click of a button.  You can also easily send and receive text messages for your text-savvy customers and do voice campaigns for those customers that like to listen to a message.  It’s all there.

Okay, there’s more:

TAARGA is offering FREE Managed Emails for a limited time. Do a free trial with us and we’ll have your campaign up and running in THREE days or less!  Call us and we’ll have you saying Goodbye Halloween and Hello Tire Season!

You Have the Upper Hand in the Game of Promoting Value and Winning Customer Loyalty.

Unlike a lot of other mechanics out there that try to play the game, your dealership has all the latest equipment and top-notch expertise to give your customers’ vehicles a long and healthy road life. From soup to nuts, you’ve got it covered. Why not stack the cards in your favor by offering what customers really want; Value. Play your hand right and win customer loyalty.

Value is your trump card:

While customers are having work done in your service center, offer them a free inspection while they are there.  It’s a simple concept.  From a customer’s point of view, it goes a long way in the thought that they’re getting much more than they paid for.  They will happily come back for more.

Here are the bonus points:

If you happen to find any maintenance required during the free inspection, you may be able to provide a paid-for service that’ll help you make your quotas while keeping your valued customers safe on the road.

Play the game with a TAARGA playing piece to boost your success:

Offer a free vehicle alignment check, for example. With our weather-wary roads, potholes, curbs and even just day-to-day driving can have a grave effect on a vehicle’s suspension system and steering components.  TAARGA can help you promote this free service with TAARGA’s own trump card; Confirmation Marketing.

Confirmation Marketing is a powerful tool that has achieved proven success in getting customer response.  Let us send personalized emails, text messages and voice campaigns for you to let your customers know that you care enough to give them value in exchange for loyalty.

Don’t leave the hope of customers coming in for servicing to a roll of the dice.

Schedule a Test Drive with TAARGA today and let us help you win the game by promoting value and keeping your customers happy.

Are Your Customers having Repair-Affairs with Other Mechanics?

You are an attractive and desirable dealership. You have customers that are faithful and repeatedly come to you for the vehicle maintenance that they know and love.

Not to put the relationship in question, but a healthy look at the service-relationship you have with your customers can only make it stronger.   Have you ever considered the possibility of a ménage-a-trois happening right under your nose?  It happens all the time. Customers oft time consider going to a different mechanic to get work done on their vehicle.  People want to save money and go where it’s the cheapest.  It’s an affair of the wallet, we must admit.  Sometimes they go to your dealership, sometimes they go elsewhere to give their vehicle some love.  Sometimes it depends on what’s covered under warranty.  When the vehicle warranty has expired, customers are even more likely to venture astray.

So what is a dealer to do?  Consider attracting them back by letting them know that you are the experts of their brand of vehicle.  Only you have intimate knowledge of the electronics under their hood.  You have the right certification and access to guaranteed parts that they may need.

One clear example of dealer advantage over the ‘other guy’ is when changing seasonal tires.  Most vehicles manufactured today are equipped with a TPS. (Tire Pressure Sensor). There are now special considerations to be made when changing tires with a TPS.  If done incorrectly, a sensor can be broken.  This can cause more repair or potentially put customers in danger if they can’t detect when their tires are under-inflated.

This is just one example of many that can be used to encourage customers to seek out their dealership’s service department for servicing.  Let TAARGA help you remind your customers that they can and should rely on you for precise servicing, backed by expertise and accountability.

With TAARGA’s Confirmation Marketing, communicating with your customers has never been easier or more effective.  Send personalized emails that’ll make them dump that ‘other guy’ mechanic and come back into the arms of you, their trusted dealer.  Send and even receive text messages from your customer base.  Use voice campaigns for those customers who prefer to receive messages on their voice-mail.

With winter coming, the time is now to quell repair-affairs and win back those customers that have strayed, enticed by the cheaper shenanigans advertised by less qualified mechanics.  Call TAARGA today and let our communication expertise help keep the dealer/customer relationship stronger than ever.

Book your Confirmation Marketing test drive today.

Don’t Let Your Customers’ Older Vehicles Suffer Through Winter’s Wear and Tear. Give them an Option They can Warm Up To.

A brand new winter awaits to take the stage and act out a drama scene involving bitter cold, sloppy slush, slippery sleet, and gritty salt; all of which wreak havoc on our vehicles. We know that and our customers know that. In fact, right now, customers are trying not to think of what they should be doing to prepare their vehicles for winter because they’re dreading the decisions and the expense.

This is the ideal time for dealerships to use their expertise and help their customers make wise decisions that’ll make winter a lot easier, safer and less expensive for them in the long run.  They will thank you with their loyalty!

How many customers in your database have vehicles that are five years old or older?  On an older vehicle, the weather has an even greater impact on parts. It is around the five-year mark, that timing belts, suspension bits along with a host of other parts need to be checked, fixed and possibly replaced to keep the vehicle humming through the winter.

When the service expense is too high, why not offer your customers the option to trade in their rusty heap for a brand new vehicle. Offer them a deal to unload a burden and replace it with less hassle and road trips that are safe and sound. This they might consider.

TAARGA can help you invite those customers for a service appointment to assess their winter-readiness and help them through a “fix-old or buy-new” decision.

Only TAARGA has the power of Confirmation Marketing to really get the attention of your customers. We can send personalized emails to your older-vehicle customers; the kind of emails that really get opened. We can also send text messages and voice campaigns that will get them in the door this autumn.
Don’t let your customers avoid the decisions they should be making before winter. Show you care by contacting TAARGA now and invite your customers to consider the “fix-old or buy-new” option at your dealership. You have only sales and loyalty to gain!

The Winter-Way To Exceed your Sales Quotas This Month

As the slush and snow-covered slippery roads are but a forecast away, now is the time to get that winter service strategy rolling and shovel-up your share of the winter tire business.

Get ready, as customers are about to come snowstorming in for oil, lube and filter changes and those wonderful multiple-point inspections.

Or will they?

Customers everywhere are only a reminder away, that they had better start thinking about prepping their vehicle for the frigid months to come. This is your opportunity to make the sales-snowstorm happen and fill your quota like a dumpster fills a snowbank!

What would you get if you could meet your quota easily with only a winter service strategy, your customer database and seriously effective communication in your stash?

You’d get open rates you haven’t seen before, fully-booked appointments and a warm smile that’ll keep winter’s cold at bay.

What is this seriously effective communication? It is Confirmation Marketing and it is what TAARGA does best.

With nothing more than the customer data you already have and TAARGA’s Confirmation Marketing technology, we can send personalized emails along with effective text messaging and voice campaigns that really convert.

Let us help you greatly reduce your need for cold-calling and print ads this month. Customers’ eyes are on their mobile devices so why not advertise where they are looking?  You’ve got the winter service strategy. We’ve got the winter-way to get it done right.

Schedule your winter maintenance test drive today.

Hit Your Monthly Sales Goal With One Email!

The end of the month is less than two weeks away. Are you worried about missing your sales goal? If so, stop waiting for appointments and sales to materialize from thin air and take matters into your own hands.

Start by making sure your marketing tools are ready for the job, or like Jimmy Ziegler says, “you need to sharpen your axe before you chop down a tree.”

In this case, if the sale is the tree, consider your database as the permit and Confirmation Marketing as the best tool in the shed; it’s quick; cost effective; and, converts.


The easiest starting point is sending personalized emails. It may sound too simple, but it is a proven tool that can help you book more test drives before the end of the month. Why try to recreate the wheel?

Email marketing has 2X higher ROI than cold calling, networking or trade shows. (Marketing Sherpa, 2013)

You can automate your email blast, so with one click you can send everyone in your database a personalized message based on data you’ve collected already – name, current vehicle, preferred model or price range. It saves you time and delivers results. There are professionals out there can help you refine your process.

There’s more to Confirmation Marketing than just automated email blasts but start there and work your way towards the perfect drip process for lead nurturing. That way you’re never stuck for appointments before the end of the month again.

If you use the best tools right now, your sales quota this month is only an email away.

TAARGA is offering free MANAGED email campaigns for car dealers this month. Work with our Confirmation Marketing specialists to help you setup and send a personalized email blast that will lead to actual test drives and sales.