Client: General Manager – UT
Background: The dealership has had a vanity 800 number for many years, but it was not the focal point in their advertising. A new General Manager came on board and saw the need for a more aggressive advertising campaign using 1-800-NEW-HONDA.
Challenge: Increase incoming call volume to dealership and sell more units each month.
Solution: Focus on the vanity 800 number as a direct-response tool to drive traffic to the dealership.
Results: With a new advertising agency, the General Manager began ramping up marketing efforts to include a vanity 800 number in all advertising materials to capture phone traffic. He set a goal of generating 300 incoming calls and moving 150 units off the lot each month. “We used to receive 20 to 30 calls a month on the vanity number. Once we started marketing the number that increased to 150 to 200 calls per month,” says the GM.
As a result of their advertising, the incoming call volume and percentage of units sold each month has increased. “We are shattering previous sales records by 50% and I attribute this success to our new advertising, which prominently features the vanity 800 number. One month we went from selling 80 units to moving 120 new units off our lot compared to the same month of the previous year,” he says.
His strategy can be considered unique within the auto industry. Henson uses print and billboard ads to promote just the vanity 800 number. “Typical newspaper ads for dealers are cluttered. We run just the vanity number in a portion of our print advertising so the ads are clear and easily read, and it has been successful. The billboard, which only displays 1-800-NEW-HONDA®, has significantly increased our call volume.” Finally, after posting the vanity 800 number on the dealerships’ website, the internet salespeople have also seen an increase in call volume.
The GM monitors the success of his advertising on an hourly basis, referring to the tracking reports multiple times a day. He has added Call Recording to his account and extensive phone training is taking place to ensure calls are handled properly and that the dealership is optimizing every lead.
“As we continue with our strong advertising campaign we expect our brand awareness in the market to continue increasing, as well as the number of incoming calls,” says the GM. Sounds like he is well on his way to true success!
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