How many emails have you received today? How many have you actually read? Is it even 25%? Now ask yourself the same questions about texts. Chances are, you receive plenty of texts too, but you most likely read them all eventually. While not every customer is tech-savvy or wants to communicate via text, a growing number of consumers don’t even bother to read marketing materials they receive through email anymore. To keep your dealership ahead of the trend, take a look at the differences between email and text marketing to boost your automotive sales.
Emails and texts are both less invasive than phone calls, particularly during the workday. But texting conveys your message quicker and pops up on the screen, even when customers are in a meeting or can’t talk on the phone. If you’re running a sale or promotion, this is the best way to ensure they’ll see the message immediately.
An email gives you the chance to go into more depth with the services you provide. While some customers, particularly the older generation, prefer this more formal line of communication, it has some pitfalls as well. Many people mass-delete marketing emails each day, and yours can get lost in the shuffle. Also, when you send an email, you are just one of the many people offering your goods.
Texting is more personalized, because texts typically come from someone we’ve chosen to give our phone number to. When you text someone, you fall into the category of communication that takes place between friends, family and colleagues, rather than just advertisers.
Many people don’t have time to read all the lengthy emails they receive in a day. Emails work well for dealerships when they convey multiple pages of information or paperwork and documents to sign. But texting is more appealing to most customers, since it gets to the point. The reader can often get the gist of the message from the first sentence, without even opening the text. From there, you can link files with longer documents that they can click on when they have time.
The traditional CRM cycle for phone calls and emails involves a seven-day period of communication. With text marketing, and SMS CRMs, the follow-up can be continual. Many automobile purchases require a lengthy period of research, comparison, fund gathering and finance options. Customers often begin the process as much as eight months before they make a purchase. If your communication stops after a week, you miss out on customers who simply needed more time to process.
Phone calls and emails are time-consuming endeavors that follow a linear process. You can only call one person at a time, or send one personalized email. These marketing tools might be used for particular customers who prefer not to text or only offer a home phone number. But texting can be done through an SMS CRM system that doesn’t require a staff of people. Appointments can be set to follow-up on countless leads, allowing you to interact with multiple customers at once. This type of system works whenever you need it to, so you can focus on other things.
Receiving an ill-timed phone call or impersonal email can be annoying. You want to keep your communication appealing, so customers don’t feel pestered or rushed. Texts are brief and casual and don’t require a conversation. Texts can also be read quickly and replied to later, keeping your company on their mind. When you text a customer, it tells them you are distinctly interested in their business. This is an important decision for them, and they want to feel like they matter to you. They also appreciate the fact that they can reach you easily, rather than calling a landline where they are put on hold, and possibly patched through to voicemail.