Welcome to Retailers Rule!, an interview series exploring digital marketing insights from the perspective of local retailers and the brands they sell. Our latest interview features Wayne Siegel, President of The Legend Auto Group, which consists of Legend Nissan (Syosset, NY), Legend Porsche (Massapequa, NY), and Legend Audi/VW (Amityville, NY).
The Legend Auto Group is a family business, started by Wayne’s father in 1980 and now owned by Wayne and his brother, Michael. It has expanded to include several different franchises over the years, acquiring the Nissan part of the business in 2000.
Over the course of our conversation, Wayne and I talked about the evolution of consumer choice, the advantages of paid digital advertising, and taking that first step towards digital marketing understanding.
What types of trends do you see happening in the auto industry? How does this affect how you market and talk to consumers?
One of the biggest trends I see is that the ability for the consumer to compare different manufacturers, models, and even dealerships is easier now than ever before. Digital has made it simpler for consumers to seek out and investigate more choices, not only when it comes to the cars they’re interested in but also where to buy them.
We’re grateful that, because of the way we take care of the consumer when they get here, digital has also made it easy for them to say, “I went to Legend, I loved the experience, I’m glad that I went there…” All kinds of positive reviews.
To be fair, what we’ve also noticed is, if a customer is dissatisfied for whatever reason and doesn’t want to tell us in-person but chooses to say it online, we now have the ability to quickly respond, get them taken care of, and work to make them happy.
Regardless of what they’re selling, I believe that most retailers and dealers want to do what’s right for the consumer. They want to put themselves in the best light. They want to extend all the courtesies they can. Sometimes we can trip up, but it’s the ability to turn negative feedback around that helps us to truly stand out.
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What advertising channels are you currently utilizing?
We are mostly doing digital advertising now, and we do it all: paid search advertising, Facebook advertising, SEO marketing, email marketing, and more.
They all have given us some return on our investment. At different points in time, some have given a better return than others, but they’ve all at least paid for themselves.
How are you measuring ROI for those advertising channels?
We look at what the cost is for the particular campaign, and whether or not we’ve gotten results (as well as what kind of results). It doesn’t necessarily have to be a campaign like, “Come in and buy a car.” The customer might not necessarily be interested in buying a car at that time.
Either way, we’ve gotten an engagement with the consumer, which could lead to them telling their friend about the car or telling their friend that we reached out to them. Building these consumer relationships is 100% a valuable measurement for us.
Are you utilizing any other means of engaging with local consumers?
We do in-store events. These are mostly events that we establish via an online promotion and in a digital atmosphere, like a President’s Day or holiday event. We promote these events through Facebook and other social media channels. Any way we can bring them into the store.
For example, Nissan just had their Star Wars: Rogue One event. We promoted the heck out of that online, which drove in all kinds of customers. We showed them the limited edition Star Wars: Rogue One car, gave out the free keychains. It brought tremendous exposure to us and other Nissan dealers.
Is Nissan providing you with support for those events?
Yes, they give us a lot of support. They give us all kinds of assets that we can use, from pictures to commercials and videos… They provide all of those materials for us to use and get the word out.
What are your thoughts on the overall brand support you receive from Nissan?
The brand support that Nissan provides is outstanding. They really think about what they can offer for the dealer to use in order to promote their dealership.
Promoboxx is a great example of that. Promoboxx is a free service that Nissan offers to its dealers for them to use and get their name out there, whether they’re a big dealer or a small dealer. If they don’t have the infrastructure to have someone handle their digital presence or their social media channels, Promoboxx makes it easy for even the smallest dealer to develop a presence and promote themselves.
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How long have you been using Promoboxx?
We’ve been using Promoboxx for over two years now, and the experience has been great.
We try and use all of the Promoboxx features available to us. Great ones like Promoboxx Local Ads really help to reach new customers on digital channels and drive them into the dealership. It all helps us capitalize on digital opportunities for the organization.
How would you compare paid digital advertising to more traditional advertising channels like radio, TV, etc.?
However a dealer gets their name out there, it gets there name out there. You can’t be everywhere all the time, and you can’t be all things to all people all the time.
For us, though, the ROI on digital has been far better than newspaper, radio, things like that. Digital just has a longer shelf life. For the dollar spend compared to what else is out there, I think it has greater customer impact and resonates better overall.
I also think you can get your point across better via channels like social than you can by just putting an ad in the newspaper, an ad that has maybe a one-day shelf life. You can be more reactive to customers on digital, too, and gives them the ability to respond more quickly: “I see it, I want it, click, I’m in.”
What is your biggest piece of advice for retailers and dealers who are just getting started with digital marketing?
It’s in their best interest to familiarize themselves with digital marketing, to at least explore the opportunity that’s there.
It’s all about taking that first step towards understanding, creating the process, and utilizing all the help you can get. Those that don’t are going to suffer, and nobody should have to suffer. Sometimes you just need to talk to someone to get the education, and when the conversation ends, you might feel better about the entire process and see a way into greater profitability.
You can make digital marketing easy for your retailers.
With Promoboxx, auto leaders like Nissan invite their retailers to participate in marketing campaigns, allowing them to promote co-branded campaign content across key digital channels.
By leveraging Promoboxx, brands extend national messaging and amplify brand awareness at the local level, all while providing their retailers with an effective, easy-to-use digital marketing solution that drives in-store traffic. Contact us to learn more today >