Why Your Car Dealer Marketing Need A Simon Cowell Attitude Adjustment


Simon Cowell from American Idol.


We all know him as the man we love to hate. He recently had an interview where they were reflecting on the days before American Idol existed.


There was a time when it was just an idea and not a reality. Simon remembered everyone saying that they didn’t think it would work. A talent show where the public is in control of the winner just wouldn’t be successful.


Boy were “they” wrong.


The concept got us thinking. American Idol found it’s success because everyone doubted it’s ability to grab the attention of the viewers.


Nobody thought it was possible. It was a huge risk for the production company, network and also the stars who stand as judges.


Risk is a very common four letter word used in conjunction with business. To even think of starting a new business is a risk. American Idol was a risk on another level.


The big guys in the industry are used to taking risks. Any show that goes into production is a money risk, but they have plenty of money to take the leap of faith that the show will be the next Idol. So, in the grand scheme of things the risk is minimal.


Simon took a bigger chance.


A risk that goes beyond money.


What could be a greater risk than money?


Our egos.


You see, Simon and the production companies had plenty of money to risk, but what if the show flopped the first season? Their reputations were on the line.


It can take years of hard work to recover from one failed show or movie deal. Their belief in what they had is what kept them on track. They didn’t seek the encouragement of others to forge ahead. They had a vision and stuck to the plan.


Sometimes that’s all the encouragement we should need (none).


You need to take note of what Simon and the gang did. Sometimes doing the right thing may not be the popular decision. Marketing your car dealership isn’t about making your friends and club members happy.


Effective car dealership marketing should sting a little.


It needs to make the potential customer a little uncomfortable. Uncomfortable enough to jump up and take action!


Don’t let people change your ideas. You don’t want to be a “cookie cutter” car dealership.


We’d like to share a short example of what one of our former consulting clients is doing to bring in the results he wants. His niche is marketing to physicians to attend a financial workshop.


He uses a hand written note and printed newspaper articles to give the illusion of the package coming from a friend or fellow doctor.


They felt the package would carry a bigger punch if they had a good testimonial or two. They sought out the director of the medical society in their local county.


However, there was a catch. She has requested that she can view the package and sign off on it before it is sent with her rave review.


Chances are she won’t sign off. The “hand-written” note appears to have scribbles and side notes and is a mess. It totally goes off the beaten path of most standard marketing styles. Most people in their right mind would never sign off on such a package.


Here is the big dilemma – if the director won’t sign off do you go ahead and send the package without the testimonial? Withstand the criticism and keep going with what he knows will work.


We say YES. This type of package does work and it is the physician’s idea even though it’s not your standard, perfectly printed flyer or invitation.


Another example comes from one of our current car dealership clients who has spent almost a year trying to decide on an image or offer to put on their fleet of trucks.


We’ve passed along the marketing advice of putting a headline and offer on all sides of the trucks just to see what would happen. They chose not to take the advice.


Instead they drove around for another six months with nothing on their moving billboards. (We really felt that the owner’s wife was nervous about what “the neighbors would think” with the headline and offer driving all over town.)


What a waste!


They got no value from the hours upon hours the trucks would spend in traffic each and every day. Now they are settling for a “same is lame” image that will have little impact. (The new logo won’t stir up the country club friends. Wouldn’t want to offend anyone.)


Now you need to ask yourself – are you like our first example and willing to take the risk or more like the second and worry about what the neighbors will think? Do you have the guts to step outside the comfort zone of your friends?


What if Simon had listened to all those people who said Idol would never fly? Where would he be?


Whether it’s easy or not we all need a little Simon in our attitudes!


For more information on car marketing visit RichDealers.com