The Bruce Titus Automotive Group is based in Puget Sound, WA, with rooftops around Washington (Olympia Nissan, Olympia Chrysler Jeep, Tacoma Subaru and Port Orchard Ford) and a Volkswagen dealership in Palm Springs, California. Started in 1994, this diverse group tries not to limit itself to one type of shopper.
In the Seattle/Tacoma area, one of Bruce Titus’s biggest challenges is standing out from the crowd.
“This metro area is highly competitive across all of our brands, both in new and used car sales,” said Courtney Titus Barr, Digital Marketing Manager for Bruce Titus Automotive Group.
“One of the things I really wanted to improve on was reaching the right person at the right time with the right message.” Pelting customers with irrelevant content is not the way to make customers for life; knowing what the customer’s current automotive situation is and communicating with them as individuals is the way a dealership can build lasting relationships.
Consistency of Message
“We wanted to maintain consistency in our marketing, both from a brand guideline standpoint and for each of our dealerships.” Creating a marketing campaign that appears like a patchwork of different ideas does nothing to build trust or recognition in the customer’s eyes. They are subjected to hundreds if not thousands of advertisements a day; “random” messages from a dealership only adds to the noise.
“I wanted to streamline the customer lifecycle marketing for our dealerships.” By using the correct messages in the correct way, a dealership can not only make it easier for existing customers to continue to do business with the company but can also lure competitors’ customers away when those dealerships don’t make an effort to simplify the process.
“When I joined the automotive group, I took a look at the tools they had in place and saw what was working and what wasn’t, and scrubbed down from there. We got rid of quite a few different tools, put in all-new websites and brought in some new tools, one of those being Outsell.”
“The bulk of our marketing dollars are spent on digital marketing and using AI where we can. Tools like Outsell have become a big function of our marketing. The AI is particularly useful for email marketing, helping the group with our three main marketing challenges.”
“We took a look at all the messages that were going out, including what the OEM was doing. The last thing we wanted was to oversaturate the customers. Outsell’s ongoing communications have helped us streamline our marketing efforts to make the most of each message we send out.”
Year-Over-Year results have been impressive for marketing efforts based on the Outsell marketing automation platform driven by AI. In March 2017, when the auto group brought Outsell onboard, Bruce Titus marked four sales linked to AI-influenced marketing efforts, for a total gross profit of $3,512. One year later, sales for the month of March had increased to 15 sales, for a total gross profit of $36,507.
Service fared even better with the new platform. In March 2017, there were 62 repair orders linked to the AI-influenced marketing efforts, for a total gross profit of $11,596. In March 2018, that number had ballooned to 287 ROs, for a total gross profit of $46,658. Even better, 61 of those ROs came from first-time servicers, and 132 came from regular servicers. These are the numbers that allow steady income and growth for a dealership for the long term.
“As a smaller-to-midsized auto group, we typically test out different platforms in one store and, if things go well, roll them out to the other stores. Let’s just say we’ve rolled Outsell out to all the other stores in the Bruce Titus Automotive Group.”