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Digital marketing agency vs. in-house marketer

BY ERIC MCMULLEN

Powersports is easy, right? You’re selling an experience, you’re active on social media, your numbers are on the rise... You’re doing terrific! You’re on the right track and you should be proud of your accomplishments! Wouldn’t it be great if that was the end of this post? Fortunately for you, there is an easy way to take your game to the next level and it doesn’t involve giving money to a cold-calling digital marketing company. A full-time in-house marketer is the sure-fire way to increase traffic, establish a consistent omni-channel brand image, and create valuable content that will get you on page one of Google!

The benefits of having a marketer under your roof are infinite but if you care about your dealership, you probably have some initial concerns:

 Yes, this will cost you more than a digital marketing company. The difference is in the finished products. One product comes from a member of your own culture who you hired, trained, and invested your time into. The other sees you as one of an ever increasing number of clients. See the difference?

Another obstacle is finding someone both qualified for the position AND passionate about what you do. When you look in the right places you will find someone that is not only a perfect fit but also enthusiastic to join your team. In fact, the chances are pretty good that the person you are looking for is already a customer.

Now it is time to learn what your own personal marketer can do for you. Sounds pretty great, doesn’t it? First is Search Engine Optimization. Put simply, SEO is the art of convincing Google to place your website links above your competition without spending money. This is done by using keywords, adding content to your website, making your website load faster, registering your website with various search engine directories… the list is never ending and constantly growing. The point is, there are many steps you can take without spending money to improve your Google rank and get more eyes on your inventory. The measurable results will outweigh the costs and you will have someone you can talk with face to face about them whenever you want. 

Speaking of faces, the internet wants to see yours! Social media is a direct extension of ourselves and of our businesses. The vast majority of buyers still prefer to make purchases in a brick and mortar store. However, your website, social media outlets, and other sites on which your name exists all play a pivotal role in your brand image. Establishing yourself on social media sites and other 3rd party retailers such as Cycle Trader, Craigslist, and Ebay is a great start, but the trick to becoming the master is maintaining a consistent brand image across all avenues. The root of this image and how to find it is a topic for another blog, but the message to take away here is that doing this with perfection requires constant planning and upkeep. An in-house marketer is a necessity if you want to successfully maintain and nourish your brand image. 

With your brand image in mind, content creation is the next leap towards digital exposure that your marketer can help you with. Content takes on many forms but is most commonly found as blogs, event pages, mass emails, click advertisements, and YouTube videos. Original content requires writing, graphic design, web design, and other professional skills. When done properly, original content can be used to get your dealership to rank for high-volume keywords and actively compete against the big dealership down the street. Content will also greatly increase user experience and, once again, strengthen your brand image. The amount of resources required for the magnitude of content necessary to make a difference is great, but with the right help the results will be even greater.

Hiring a full-time marketer to increase traffic, strengthen your brand image, and create original content will save you dollars and hours on the road to maximizing profit. Once you have these three strategies down, there is no telling where your in-house marketer will take you.

Eric McMullen is the marketing coordinator at Team Winnebagoland, a premium midwest dealer, where he manages all marketing efforts for powersports and marine. With backgrounds in marketing, media production, and automotive, Eric brings an exciting twist to powersports and is redefining the industry with groundbreaking digital marketing techniques.

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