There are a lot of things to consider when launching a new marketing campaign.  While it’s exciting, every step is important to make sure you have tight, personalized targeting. We’ve put together the ultimate checklist for dealerships so that you can ensure success in your next marketing campaign. 


Define your message 

Before you get technical in Google Adwords, for example, it’s really important you’ve settled on a message for your marketing campaign — what are you trying to achieve? What are you trying to convey in as little words as possible? What is going to grab your shoppers’ attention while still staying on-brand for your dealership? Once you have a nice bucket of keywords, phrases, and streamlined messages you’d like to publish, you can then move to step two of the checklist. 


Define your channels

Every marketing channel serves a different purpose and a different audience, so when your dealership is putting together a new marketing campaign, it’s critical to also understand how to translate that message into different channels.  


Search campaigns, for example, will be hit phrases connected to keywords, whereas display will focus on a strong image for grabbing attention of website visitors that you want to bring back to your dealership website.  So while it’s important to hone in on your messaging, it’s also just as important to match the messaging to the marketing channel. 


Gather assets

Every marketing channel has different requirements for text capacity, image size, and file type. Make sure your team has created all the copy and design to fit those requirements so you can launch as smoothly and as quickly as possible. 

To check out Google’s requirements, click here

To check out Facebook’s requirements, click here


Targeting settings 

With every marketing campaign, your dealership is going to want to get granular with its targeting, starting with location settings.  In this section, you’re able to define geographic locations to include and exclude in your campaigns based on your goals.  When dealerships forget to exclude outside of their target audiences, there are usually ads being displayed in places you don’t want to spend money;  make sure you set this up so you can get the most ROI from your marketing. You’ll also be looking at language and age setting to make sure your marketing campaigns are relevant to every buyer. 


Set the dates 

Some campaigns make sense to run without a stop date like name or brand campaigns that are long lasting. Just don’t forget to do maintenance on these kinds of campaigns like excluding keywords that you don’t want to pay for or adding search terms that are relevant for your dealership. For other campaigns like incentives, make sure you put a stop date so your dealership isn’t running irrelevant ads after a sale or holiday. 



Channels like Google and Facebook allow you to optimize your ad campaigns for different things. Are you trying to get more traffic to your website?  Or are you looking to get more qualified leads?  These are the types of decisions you’ll have to make while putting together your marketing campaigns.  Make sure that your audience and your message also align with this goal.  For example, if your dealership wants to put together a brand campaign after a buy-sell, the language will probably be very general and introductory and therefore you’ll optimize for clicks to get the most traction under the new ownership. 


You’ll also want to review budget optimization options before launching the campaign. Most platforms have algorithms to optimize for your goal and make sure you’re spending budget wisely, but your dealership may opt for manual spending cap.


Launching a marketing campaign for your dealership’s next Black Friday sale may be super thrilling, but make sure you review the little stuff before to ensure a highly successful and functioning marketing operation. 


Think of anything else that should go on our checklist? Tweet at us @autoeladstar and give us your tips!

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