Shrink Per-Vehicle Ad Costs to Grow Dealership Profits

Per-Car Dealership Adveritising Budget

The math is simple: less money spent to accomplish the same task will result in greater profit.

But figuring out where to spend less money isn’t always easy, especially in dealership advertising. Not all channels are created equal when it comes to driving traffic to the showroom. Plus, the constant addition of new channels plays havoc with marketing efficiency.

An integral part of judging automotive marketing efficiency, then, is to look at ad cost per vehicle as a baseline for how your marketing is working to create return on investment. Once you determine where you should be spending to maximize profits at least possible cost, you stretch those dollars to work harder than ever before.

That’s why understanding exactly how much it costs, versus how much it could cost, to get a car shopper to your website or a buyer to your showroom is the key to efficient, strategic ad spending. Knowing the budget on each and every channel, and how effective each channel is, will help you assess your ad cost per vehicle and decide where budget changes can and should be made.

Of course, being strategic with those marketing dollars is only part of the solution. The other part lies in where you’re targeting those efforts.

New vehicle sales don’t happen in concentric circles around the dealership, so why should a marketing strategy reflect that? Radius targeting has been shown to be inefficient, so stop advertising in circles.

Instead, there’s a tried-and-true method for maximizing your market share potential.

  • Advertise and market as zip code-specific as possible, based on where you sell and service.
  • Identify your existing market share, your possible conquest areas, and those areas dominated by the competition, which represent little opportunity for growth.
  • Wade in with a “retain, recapture, and conquest” mentality.

By fine-tuning your dealership advertising plan, you can more effectively control your ad spend and more efficiently reach car buyers.

For help turning this info into action, call 855.NKD.LIME or email

This article was originally submitted by Ryan Zwerneman to

Naked Lime Field Consultant Ryan ZwernemanRyan Zwerneman works as a Field Marketing Consultant for Naked Lime Marketing. He’s worked in a number of various facets within the automotive marketing community during his 5 years in the industry. Ryan has worked on teams as a specialist for email and direct mail services, managed teams centered around SEO, SEM, Social, Reputation Management, Design, and Content Writing. He strategically collaborates on services designed to assist in franchise dealer market share acquisition, and consults in-store with dealerships on their overall marketing processes.