Are you the type of person who plans every aspect of your life, months or even years in advance? Or are you the type of person that does everything on a whim? I've always considered myself the latter in my personal life because I like the thrill of spontaneous plans. However, I take a different approach when it comes to working in automotive advertising.
In automotive marketing, it is best to plan for the future months instead of working in the current month. There are plenty of reasons why this works best for the industry, but here are three that are key to remembering the importance of thinking ahead:
1. You can analyze your current marketing strategy and decide whether it is bringing you the results you desire or if you need to go back to the drawing board and adjust your approach.
2. It is more cost efficient when it comes to media buying. Many reps offer a discount for buying months in advance. Buying in advance also could open up more attractive placements considering how few spots have been reserved.
3. You will avoid making rash decisions that could end up costing you money. These are the end-of-the-month panic moments, the quick decision sales events that go awry, and the poorly crafted E-Blast that's riddled with mistakes and missing information.
When it comes to dinner plans or mall purchases, a little spontaneity is harmless. When it comes to achieving business goals though, you must put a schedule into place that manages your planning. Each of these points above helps explain why circling dates on the calendar three months down the road can get you where you'd like to be, but recognize it could take awhile for the results to show. If you are starting from scratch, your marketing strategy can take some time to lift off the ground. In addition to a little forward-thinking, you need to build a presence on Google, find the right media for your market, build a presence on social media, set up marketing automation sequences, and optimize your website. All of these outlets coincide with each other create the perfect marketing blend. Thankfully, the automotive industry is predictable when it comes to incentives and sales events so we can take that into consideration when planning ahead.
In general, you will never regret taking the time to carefully plan. Mapping out the future will leave you time in the current month to analyze the results of the past and will relieve you of the stress that comes with scrambling for ideas. A little less stress and more carefully executed projects? These results may just be enough reason to change my ways.