Increase dealership sales through emotional marketing

by Shawn Puckett

What does “emotional marketing” mean, and how does it increase sales opportunities for your OPE dealership? These are important questions, and contributing writer Shawn Puckett of ARI would like to borrow a few minutes of your day to properly credit the power of emotional marketing.

Emotional marketing refers to the sales strategy of leveraging persuasive messaging to connect with your audience on a more personal level and motivate them to take a specific action. The use of emotional marketing is not a new tactic — over the years, studies have shown that emotions evoked by an ad are more powerful than the ad itself.

Recently, brands gained new appreciation for the power of emotional marketing. Following the turmoil and uncertainty of 2020, consumers began paying much closer attention to the sensitivity and emotional response that brands have displayed over the last year. The brands that adjusted their messaging to be more empathetic, informative and transparent have seen better business over brands that continued to push overt sales tactics.

In fact, the strong shift toward prioritizing emotional marketing over other tactics is one of many 2020-inspired changes that will extend well into the future. This leaves many OPE dealers wondering, “How can I best connect with prospects in 2021?” While our nation is slowly settling back into a sense of normalcy, consumers still want to see brands make an effort to form personal connections with their audiences.

Claim your community

Whether you’re the longest-running OPE dealership in the area or your store recently opened, it’s important to acknowledge your community ties. When creating copy for your website and social media posts, incorporate messaging that assures your future customers that they are being welcomed in as part of your extended family.

Highlight your team and your customers

If you want your prospects to feel like they know you before they even visit your dealership, cozy up your website and social media with images and even biographies of your friendly sales team. You can also expound on that sense of community by asking current customers if you can share their feedback and personal experiences with your dealership on your digital platforms.

Go visual

What better way to have a lasting impact on your sales leads than to provide them with visual content? Forbes reports that people who watch a video retain 95% of its message as a result of the emotions and reactions they experience. Funny, exciting and happy videos are the most likely to be re-shared. No matter the tone you’re aiming for, make sure it encourages your audience to follow through on an action such as contacting your store or clicking on a special promotion.

Remember that sage piece of wisdom, “It’s not what you say, but how you make them feel”? This basically sums up emotional marketing! Though, if we could add to the phrase, we would suggest that it’s “how you make them feel welcome, heard and appreciated” that truly leaves an impression upon your audience.

Shawn Puckett is director of Product Management at ARI Network Services, Inc. Read his previous column in the March edition of OPE Business magazine here:

Digital marketing, website, strategy, ARI, Shawn Puckett
Shawn Puckett

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