ORLANDO, Fla. (Sept. 15, 2014) — The recent 2014 International Tire Exhibition & Conference in Orlando was packed with best practices for tire dealers across all facets of the tire and automotive service industries.
One resounding theme throughout the conference was how important it is for tire dealers to sign on line and get active.
The Internet Marketing Panel, moderated by Tire Business' online manager Alaina Scott, detailed social media and online marketing tips by some tire industry experts. Panelists broke down how to utilize the social media and online platform to leverage your business in today's market. They gave such great content, I am going to separate it into two different blogs, so keep your eyes out for the Sept. 29 edition of the social media blog for more tips from our experts.
Want more content from the 2014 ITEC Show? Check out the Sept. 15 print issue of Tire Business
Here are some of the questions Alaina asked the panel:
- What is ad retargeting and what are the pros and cons?
Patrick Braswell, director of strategies initiatives, TCS Technologies, stepped up to analyze this practice. Basically, this is when a little image in a website can track you. He asked the crowd if they ever felt like they were being stalked online because they are seeing the same ad everywhere they go. That is ad retargeting.
Patrick said this can be a cool tool for tire dealers because the “shop and sale cycle of a tire consumer is seven days at the most.” Usually people buy tires within 36 hours, he said, but people will buy up to seven days later. If tire dealers use ad retargeting, they can retarget consumers as they continue searching online. It can help complete that purchase because it is keeping your company in their heads.
Mark Gillard, marketing and advertising manager, Norwell, Mass.-based Sullivan Tire & Auto Service, said the whole process is funny to him because obviously he does a lot of Google searches for tires “and now I have tire ads all over the place.”
This is a sentiment I can relate to. I am probably one of a handful of 28-year-old women who repeatedly have ads for TPMS and tires dominating their online space — of course intermixed with some shoes and handbags.
Mark said ad retargeting can be a fantastic tool; however, you have to be careful because it can be annoying. He references buying a piece of art from art.com six months ago but is still being pounded from art.com with banner ads, “and now it's turned me off.”
- Search Engine Optimization (SEO) seems to change all the time. What are some of the things tire dealers need to know now to make sure they are utilizing it?
SEO is the “art and science of getting you found through the products and services you sell,” said Ross McArthur, director of sales & business development - North America, for Net Driven.
Someone always told him the one constant in this world is change, he said, so it's just up to you whether you keep up with it or let it pass you by.
“SEO is no different, so it's going to continue to change,” Ross said.
One aspect that is always going to be important to SEO is content. Ross suggested following the three “U's” for content: usable, user-friendly and unique.
Additionally, Ross advised building content around your products and services because search engines are ultimately looking to match the end consumer to the product or service desired. If you sell tires, your website should have tire content, etc.
Suggested content includes a fitment guide with tire brands or content detailing manufacturers of the products being offered. For services, write descriptions of what you provide, how long it takes for the services to be completed and why it needs to be done at a certain mileage, etc.