On the Road Again
A recent study conducted by the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety and the Urban Institute revealed that, on average, Americans drive 29.2 miles per day or 10,658 miles per year. In other words, people spend a lot of time in their cars, which translates to ample opportunities for distributors who sell to the automotive market.
Air fresheners, safety kits and dashboard figurines are a great way to gain extra exposure, but if you’re working with a car dealership, for example, it’s going to take something a little more sophisticated than a dancing hula girl to close the deal. Let’s say your dealer client wants to convince drivers to spend those 29.2 miles mentioned above in its company’s cars—cars sitting in the lot at three new locations.
Kirby Hasseman, CEO of Coshocton, Ohio-based Hasseman Marketing, found himself in that very situation. His solution? Drive the traffic to social media.
Here, Hasseman shares the thought process behind the campaign.
Print+Promo (P+P): Describe a promotion of yours that you consider one of Hasseman Marketing’s best.
Kirby Hasseman (KH): At the end of the day, the best measurement of a promotion is results. For this promotion, we worked with a local car dealership with three new car locations. We purchased 36 travel mugs from Starline Inc. [a supplier located in Grand Island, N.Y.]. We created a campaign that combined this great promotional item with their social media presence. So first, we used three travel mugs as incentive to increase the engagement and “likes” on [the client’s] page. We helped them create a contest for anyone who shared a picture of the mugs, liked the page and commented about the dealership. We then drew the names of random winners. This was a huge success with “likes” on the page increasing by 50.
Then, we gave 10 of the travel mugs to each of the new car dealerships. We posted on Facebook that the first 10 people to come in and test-drive a car (on a certain day) would get a free travel mug. This drove traffic to each dealership and resulted in the sale of three new cars.
P+P: What items were featured in this promotion, and what influenced that decision?
KH: We used the 16 oz. Persona Tower [Vacuum] Tumbler from Starline. We used this because it is a fantastic product that consumers see value in (so it affects behavior). We also loved the full-color decoration technique, so we could include the dealership’s full-color logo.
P+P: How was this a profitable promotion for your company? For your client?
KH: It was profitable for us simply based on the fact that we wrote the order at full margin. But it was a small order. More importantly, it was very successful for the client. Three new car sales translates into approximately $90,000 in sales. Since the dealership only invested about $600 in the mugs, this seems like a great promotion. It becomes more profitable for us because it gives us a track record to do more promotions just like this one.
P+P: Did you encounter any challenges with this particular promotion? If so, how did you overcome them?
KH: Yes. Funny enough, the sales folks at the dealerships seemed strangely unwilling to give the mugs away. I had to go in and explain the concept several times before they bought in. We even printed flyers to sit on each salesperson’s desk explaining the promotion.
P+P: Is there anything you would like to add?
KH: One of the great things about our industry is that we affect human behavior. But that only works if you create specific goals and have a quality product. Do that and you have the chance to really help your customers grow their businesses.