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Who's sending your marketing email campaigns (blasts?)

CameronDV

Noob
Mar 8, 2018
21
10
6
First Name
Cameron
Who would you rather have as your email provider for marketing campaigns...

A. Your CRM provider?
B. Website provider?
C. Some 3rd Party (newsletter, mailchimp like provider?)

What unique features/benefits/capabilities do you look for when making this decision?
 
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Jeff Kershner

Founder
May 1, 2005
3,452
1,040
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First Name
Jeff
@CameronDV this is a great question(s). Especially since we've seen a few changes in the CRM landscape - right or wrong.

Most dealers rely on their CRM for email marketing. I've personally always believed this was the wrong approach UNLESS the CRM had a seperate email program/partner for sending campaigns that could still tie the analytics/data back to the customer profile.

Having your website provider offer this service is a unique approach, but could make sense. A lot of dealers want to "blast" their 3rd party leads as well. I have yet to find a dealership website provider, offer a service that accepts lead data from outside... and really, maybe they shouldn't.

As for the 3rd parties like Mailchimp, Constant Contact, etc... most of these providers DO NOT like the automotive industry. So if you're a dealership, be careful and maybe not disclose TMI.
 
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Steve Stauning

Jr. Refresher
Mar 15, 2012
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156
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Steve
There's a big difference between targeting your database and sending out an email marketing blast.

For the former, I like the CRM given that the send includes just a tiny subset of the database. For example, a campaign that might target 2013-2015 Camry owners when Toyota increases incentives on the 2018s.

For the latter - where you're just blasting some gigantic email list - I'm hopeful the dealer has a vendor-partner who manages the list and the send. There's no reason a dealer in 2018 should be destroying their own database (and their ability to remain white-listed) with un-targeted email blasts.
 
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Alex Snyder

President Skroob
May 1, 2006
2,766
1,359
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Alex
A. Your CRM provider?
Like @Stauning said this is a good spot to tackle targeted lists. I like to think of this as hyper-targeted lists where you're trying to convert people to an email reply. An example would be hitting people up who currently own a vehicle you're trying to stock-up on. Enticing them with a better trade number and killer deal on the next car would get the communication engine flying again.

And like @Jeff Kershner said, CRMs are a bad spot because of list spamming. A spammy dealer should never share an IP address with other dealers, but pretty much every CRM company does it.

B. Website provider?
Like @Jeff Kershner said this is unique and I love the idea! Nobody could better track click conversions than the website provider. For email campaigns that entice a recipient to head to a landing page, I imagine the website provider could show full click paths and whether it led to a conversion.

This also moves away from the problem of having to share an IP between email blasts and 1:1 messages.

C. Some 3rd Party (newsletter, mailchimp like provider?)
Nobody handles email marketing better than email marketing companies. So put me down for a combination of B & C where my website provider is integrated with an email marketing provider.
 

craigh

Super Moderator
May 19, 2011
1,655
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Craig
Everything you just said is the reason Bumper is a product that exists today.
What we needed was better targeting, a solution for CRM email functionality being sub-par, email-to-website tracking and templates that help dealers send less terrible emails.

@Stauning was bang on as well - these campaigns are some of the highest performing campaigns I see.
Targeting is absolutely critical both for campaign cost efficiency and avoiding pissing off your other customers.

Find one place to manage your customer list so that things like unsubscribes don't get out of sync and segment that list as small as you can while still meeting your marketing needs.
 

Kevin Hill

Noob
Mar 13, 2018
3
4
1
First Name
Kevin
I tend to agree with everything I'm seeing in here. For our dealers loyalty campaigns, we typically do the creative and then upload it to their CRM, so they can use that data to target appropriately. For conquest, we use DMS data to create a look alike audience, and manage all the lists on our end.

There's no reason a dealer in 2018 should be destroying their own database (and their ability to remain white-listed) with un-targeted email blasts.
I think an important thing to note is that if you are going to try to do conquest email blasts, make sure you are using the dealer's DMS data and removing their current customers (we do this on a monthly basis). Like Steve said, you need to do everything in your power to avoid list decay.

And, purely from a vendor perspective (particularly on conquest), it is difficult to convince dealers that conquest email marketing is still valuable. I think there have been a lot of vendors out there that soiled the concept of conquest email marketing with their shady practices. We've worked with vendors that managed email fulfillment in the past that always seemed to "accidentally" give us bad reporting data. You'll need to be honest and transparent with the dealers. It will work for most, and won't work for some, and that's OK.
 

Alexander Lau

Sr. Refresher
Feb 11, 2015
2,149
585
113
First Name
Alex
I feel like this has been heavily discussed many times in this forum. In 2018, if your failing to target, you're doing it wrong regardless of whom you use. IMO, it's far too difficult to maintain it properly internally.

The answer is, whomever is doing the best job and showing the results. E-mail is a channel in attribution and can be measured for traffic, lead and sales provision numbers. Keep your vendors accountable.
 
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reverson

Jr. Refresher
Mar 21, 2012
287
315
93
First Name
Ryan
Having your website provider offer this service is a unique approach, but could make sense. A lot of dealers want to "blast" their 3rd party leads as well. I have yet to find a dealership website provider, offer a service that accepts lead data from outside... and really, maybe they shouldn't.
To give Dealer Inspire a quick plug, they do offer email blast services through Launch Digital and then show the reporting in the Dealer Inspire website backend. They pull email lists straight from the CRM so it's not limited to just DI website leads.

You'll see this campaign didn't perform as well (regarding opens and clicks) as other clients because the store wanted to blast it to 31K emails instead of a more targeted list which is preferred.

dealer-inspire.jpg
 

Alexander Lau

Sr. Refresher
Feb 11, 2015
2,149
585
113
First Name
Alex
To give Dealer Inspire a quick plug, they do offer email blast services through Launch Digital and then show the reporting in the Dealer Inspire website backend. They pull email lists straight from the CRM so it's not limited to just DI website leads.

You'll see this campaign didn't perform as well (regarding opens and clicks) as other clients because the store wanted to blast it to 31K emails instead of a more targeted list which is preferred.

View attachment 3509
The question could be posed, why pull it from the CRM in the first place? Find a competent CRM company and use their E-mail blast system or services.
 
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reverson

Jr. Refresher
Mar 21, 2012
287
315
93
First Name
Ryan
The question could be posed, why pull it from the CRM in the first place? Find a competent CRM company and use their E-mail blast system or services.
Oh I wish it was that easy Alex. :rofl:

As I'm sure you know, it's extremely difficult to switch a single store's CRM...now try multiplying that by 46 dealerships and having to train 1,700 employees. Exporting a list from our CRM is a much easier band-aid than blowing the whole thing up :)