Junk Data—The Reason Why Dealership Marketing Efforts Fail

As dealerships evaluate ways to reach more customers amid social distancing requirements, many are turning to digital channels to market to their customers. With minimized in-store visits, digital channels like email are becoming a preferred way to engage customers and stay top of mind in an uncertain time.

Think for a minute about what is feeding those campaigns. It’s data. From where? The DMS typically tells you who purchased or serviced at your dealership over time. Yet, when dealerships rely on DMS data to drive their marketing efforts, chances are they are talking to people who no longer own the vehicle that was sold to them or serviced.

Check out these stats:

  • On average, 20% of in-market vehicles are no longer owned by the original buyer
  • 8% of emails in DMS records need appending due to bounces or missing data.

How do you track changing vehicle owners across thousands of customer records? You pass the work on to Activator Dealer Solutions. With a suite of marketing automation solutions for sales and service, we prioritize cleaning and appending dealership databases with the most accurate, current customer information. Over time, this saves dealers wasted time and money marketing to customers who no longer own their vehicles.

How it works

Email Marketing

When dealers first go live with us, we put their database through an e-append scrub to verify DMS customer contact details. That first scrub is where we see the most significant improvement in marketing efforts because dealers are no longer using inaccurate data that's long overdue for a refresh. Then each month, we do a “subsequent owner” verification scrub using a proprietary ownership verification process that follows the VIN to identify who owns the current vehicle.

So not only are we creating incremental marketing opportunities for the dealership by adding subsequent owners, but we are also identifying who no longer owns that vehicle to avoid wasting time and money marketing to them.

Direct Mail Marketing

Regarding direct mail marketing, we pass dealer DMS data through an NCOA (National Change of Address) scrub, getting dealers a complete list of clean mailable customer records for customized campaigns targeted to sales and/or service customers. Just another way that we are cleaning dealer databases and maximizing targeted marketing to see improvements in response rates and overall ROI.

Dealers can expect to see vast improvements over time as data continues to be refreshed every month. For example, a top dealer group in Utah has corrected nearly 30% of its email database since working with Activator. One of their stores has been able to reach out to over 1,000 new owners of vehicles from subsequent owner scrubs. Put simply, don’t use junk data for marketing. Improve your dealership’s marketing efforts with actionable, accurate data. See why top dealerships nationwide are choosing Activator to run their marketing campaigns and drive new business opportunities.

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