Many manufacturer brands are following a “lesser of two evils” strategy when managing their dealer locators, or developing PPC landing pages for their dealers.
On one hand, brands link directly to their dealers’ websites, and risk a poor experience that damages their brand. Classic examples of this are competitor brands showing up, competitor promotions out-shining yours, poor quality graphics and navigation, and out-dated product spec and promotions.
On the other hand, if brand marketers don’t link to their dealers’ websites, they get an earful from dealers who want them linked, and they hear from consumers that would rather click through, and not have to stop and pick up the phone.
Either path is a compromise. How can you create a win-win scenario?
We know from experience and research that consumers visiting a brand website prefer that brand over other brands — in some cases by a 2:1 margin. Why else would they be at the brand site? That brand has obviously built up enough awareness and preference to warrant the consumer visit. Given that fact, it only makes sense that your dealers support your brand when they click from your website.
Executing that vision is nearly impossible if you’re leaving it up to your dealers to update content on their own dealer websites. On the other hand, you can use a templated platform that allows for landing pages or entire sites to be co-branded. These can be controlled by both the dealer and the brand – each to support their own goals. How much control (and over what content) is a business decision that is unique to each brand…but examples abound on how its done.
Your Brand in the Tricky Hand-Off to Your Dealers