How can email marketing during the holiday season be beneficial to your dealership? You should already be sending out email blasts and newsletters year-round, but during the busiest shopping season of the year it is imperative to appear in your customers’ inboxes. In 2014, 619.9 billion was spent during the holiday season in the United States alone. Your dealership will not see significant holiday spending without advertising and marketing efforts on many different platforms. Email marketing is one of those platforms and it gives you the chance to reach out to your customers directly. Ideally you, the web-host provider or both have stored customers’ emails from the beginning. Either when the business was founded or email technology became a primary source of communication. Additionally, you JUST collected a fresh batch of email addresses from the 2015 summer season. Email marketing will help you reach out and promote your sales, services and specials going on during the holiday season.
Here are some email marketing advice, tips and examples:
Your customers would like to be treated as unique individuals. However, it would be inefficient to customize an email to every single subscriber. The next best thing is to categorize your subscribers by engagement or behavior. Thus you can create content that tailors to that specific subscriber group’s interests. For example, if you are sending an email blast or newsletter advertising new models to subscribers who just bought a new model this summer might be less relevant than a newsletter offering winterization, storage or product enhancement specials.
Do not start off with a sales pitch! This is considered spam by email providers and very annoying by consumers. Your subject title should be short, simple and sound informative. For example, “COME down to X for 10 PERCENT OFF!!!!” is abrasive, spammy and does not entice the person to click on it for more information. Your customers already know that you are trying to sell products and services. A good example for subject lines are “Happy Holidays from X” or “X Newsletter. 10.31.2015,” which are proven to be 60-80 percent more likely to be opened according to MailChimp.
What should you include in your email blast or newsletter? Since the competition is steep with companies sending around 28 emails to active subscribers in December alone, your content has to captivate the audience. You audience is looking for information that will help them solve their BIG holiday task — giving gifts to loved ones without breaking the budget.
Here are some ideas to get you started:
- Coupons/Deals for $10 off or 20$ off selected merchandise or services
- Free shipping, free gift wrap and free gift with purchase offers/gift cards
- Pre-holiday clearance Sale Event — New campaign for discounting selected pre-owned vehicles
- Return policy, exchanges
- Hours of operation
- Dealership freebies for a specific number of charitable donations to local or national campaigns i.e. Food Drives, Toys For Tots, Meals on Wheels
Your graphics should reflect the subject of you content. A couple key elements to decorate:
- Newsletter header
Once the holiday season is over, have these graphics return everything to normal before you send out your first post-holiday email blast or newsletter.
‘Tis the season to be reaching out to your consumers! Email marketing is an efficient, effective and essential way to notify your new and returning customers of all the sales, promos and events hosted at the dealership. What you do for the holiday season and how you communicate these plans can differentiate you for other dealerships down the street, across town and in the area.
Amanda White is an account manager for DX1 and PowerSports Network.