These days, digital marketing gets a lot of attention. Business owners shouldn’t assume that means it has replaced print advertising entirely, though. In fact, the best way for automotive industry professionals to expand their reach is to make use of all available advertising channels. Read on to find out how to use print marketing effectively in today’s digital age and start putting that new knowledge to good use.
As with digital advertising, effective automotive print marketing campaigns usually target consumers based on geographical area. After all, it makes little sense for a small shop to waste money advertising to drivers all the way across the country.
When it comes to newspaper ads, the best place to start is to pick up a range of local papers and weeklies. Try to determine which of them might appeal to the shop’s target audience, then call to ask about pricing for advertising space. Small classified ads are by far the cheapest option, but it’s usually worth paying more to include photographs, graphics, and more engaging text.
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Reach Out Directly
Since well before the days of email lists and online newsletters, businesses used old-fashioned snail mail to communicate with potential customers. These days, the most cost-effective way to reach consumers directly is to create direct mail postcards. Use the postcards to advertise new promotions or services or let local drivers know about sales.
There are many ways to establish mailing lists for direct mail campaigns. However, most auto shops find that these campaigns are most effective when postcards or mailers are sent out on a weekly basis throughout the campaign.
Target Specific Demographics
Successful auto shops usually cater to specific demographics. Some focus on luxury imports while others provide affordable services to budget car owners. Determining the target audience allows shop owners to advertise specifically to the people who are most likely to respond.
Once a shop owner has a basic idea of who he or she is trying to reach, targeting that demographic using print advertising is relatively easy. Enlist the help of an advertising firm that can provide content creation services, then check out local or regional industry-specific magazines. The drivers who subscribe to automotive magazines are far more likely to respond well to print advertisements for auto shops than any random person who picks up a local newspaper.
These days, most people simply don’t trust digital marketing. Understandably, this would be the case given how misleading some online ad campaigns have been in recent years.
Instead of looking at the lack of consumer trust in digital marketing as a setback, experienced advertising pros view it as an opportunity. While today’s consumers don’t place a lot of faith in the accuracy or validity of online ads, they’re more likely to trust information garnered from print sources, including not just newspapers and magazines but also direct mailers. Combining print marketing with digital brand advertising allows shop owners to have the best of both worlds.
Enlist Professional Help
Some shop owners assume that keeping everything in-house will save money, but few mechanics have in-depth print marketing experience, so this is rarely the case. Enlisting the help of a specialized advertising agency is the best way to get a solid return on investment from every marketing campaign.