Sunshine Chevrolet Increases Web Traffic and Boosts Sales

The Problem

Kristy Elliott, Dealer/Operator of Sunshine Chevrolet, joined the family business in 2014 after spending 20+ years in non-profit marketing. She brought with her not only deep marketing knowledge, but the ability to run it inexpensively. “I’m big on measurement,” says Elliott. “I want to be able to measure everything, and then jettison things that aren’t working.” As a result, one of the first things she did at Sunshine Chevrolet was to transition the company away from traditional marketing such as TV and print advertising and go 100 percent digital, so that everything could be measured.

At first, Sunshine Chevrolet relied primarily on email campaigns for marketing – twice a month, generic campaigns (meaning all customers received the same offers). It was more effective than print ads, but Elliott wanted to do more.

The Solution

Through her participation in the dealership’s Local Marketing Association (LMA), which drives creative content for local GM dealer advertising, Elliott learned about DTG Octane, a digital marketing platform provided by Agency720 and powered by Outsell. It was exactly what she needed for Sunshine Chevrolet. She lobbied for the LMA to add the program to its advertising portfolio, making it available to dealers.

With Outsell, they could improve relevance of digital marketing to increase open rates and draw more customers into the store, do a better job mining existing customer/prospect database, increase new and pre-owned vehicle sales and number of service customers, and measure every marketing and advertising product they use, jettisoning the things that weren’t working.

The Benefits

Email open rates approaching 10 percent.

Elliott says, “That’s extremely high, and I attribute it to our ability to individualize the content and offers, making each highly relevant to the recipient. Even if we get busy and don’t have time to localize the content Outsell provides in an email campaign, I know our customers will receive a professional, personalized email with exceptionally good content and approved Chevrolet offers.”

New car sales up by 40 percent.

The targeted emails bring more people into the store and Outsell’s buyer detection software helps Sunshine Chevrolet’s salespeople focus their efforts on the customers most likely to buy. “Our salespeople and BDC Coordinators love the BuyerScout reports,” says Elliott. “They call every person with a score of seven or higher, and many of those people go on to purchase a car from us.”

Outsell ROI of 13:1.

Overall, Elliott reports that every dollar Sunshine Chevrolet invests in Outsell brings $13 in revenue. “It’s relatively easy for us to measure our ROI since everything is digital. Customers are doing a lot of research online, not just calling the dealership like they used to. Outsell is now in the Top Five drivers of traffic to our website, according to Google Analytics. It’s making a huge impact on our success.”

The Results

  • Email open rates approaching 10 percent (1-2% is typical for most marketers)
  • New car sales up by 40%
  • ROI of 13:1
“The Outsell platform has become an integral part of our overall marketing process”Kristy ElliottDealer/Operator for Sunshine Chevrolet