If you’re like most motorcycle dealers, you’ve considered or previously hired a marketing agency to help with your marketing efforts.
You’re not taking the decision lightly because it’s a big decision. You want to make sure to do as much research as possible and make the right decision. We don’t blame you. We would do the same. Actually, we want you to know as much as possible in order to make the best decision for your dealership.
The marketing agency you choose will have direct impact on your dealership’s brand message, overall image, and financial performance. Essentially, it will have an impact on everything at your dealership, which can be great if the right agency is chosen.
To keep things simple and cut through the clutter, we’ve compiled the ten most important benefits to expect if you decide to hire a marketing agency.
#1: Laser Focus and Expertise
Most marketing agencies are comprised of experienced professional who live and breathe marketing. It’s in their DNA. They get paid to study and perfect their marketing skills. They are the experts in all things marketing. It’s comforting and smart to have someone like that on your team.
Your main focus is to run a successful motorcycle dealership and know as much as possible about motorcycles. Marketing agencies’ main focus is to be the best marketers.
You’ll have the benefit of learning from the marketing agency’s past successes and failures. Both are hugely important. There’s no need to experiment on your own, if you can hire an agency that’s been there, done it, and can tell you what to and not to do.
#2: Niche Specialization
This is huge for motorcycle dealers. The motorcycle industry is a niche market. Most Americans have never owned a motorcycle. According to the Pew Research Center, 88% of Americans own a car and only 14% own a motorcycle.
The niche aspect of the motorcycle industry makes it both tight-knit and sometimes tricky to market. Targeting qualified individuals can be like looking for a needle in a haystack, if you don’t know what you’re doing. You can spend a lot of money and time without producing favorable results, if you don’t know how to target the motorcycle niche. There’s a bit of learning curve.
Hiring a marketing agency that understands the motorcycle industry and your customer base can take your marketing efforts to the next level. Not only is your new marketing agency great at marketing, but they understand the industry you operate in. This is like adding more fuel to your marketing fire. Whatever you may have been doing before will receive a huge boost and a fresh perspective.
You don’t have to worry whether or not your new marketing efforts will speak to your target audience. That’s your marketing agency’s job. Your job is to run your dealership and enjoy the benefits of your new marketing efforts.
#3: Flexibility and Less Risk
Retaining a marketing agency is not as permanent as hiring a new employee.
The agency selection process is a lot more in-depth than a typical job interview. There’s also a lot more publicly available information about marketing agencies than private citizens who come in for a job interview. One example is online reviews.
The agency’s current and past clients are also more likely to give you an honest review than a potential employee’s past employers. Employers don’t want to expose themselves to liability by providing detailed past employee reviews. Clients don’t have that fear.
Worse case, you decide to terminate your relationship with your marketing agency. In most cases, you just need a 30-day notice and repayment of any outstanding invoices. That’s it. You’re free to look for a better agency or do whatever you wish. There are no severance packages, exit interviews, unemployment taxes, or disruption among your staff. It’s a much cleaner separation than terminating an employee.
Best case, you find a great agency. You get the best of both worlds without the long-term risk and permanence of hiring a new employee.
#4: Cost Effectiveness and Efficiency
Hiring a marketing agency is almost always less expensive than hiring a full-time marketing executive.
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, in 2017, the median annual salary for a marketing manager in the United States was $129,380. This doesn’t include other fixed costs associated with hiring a new employee, such as training, taxes, health insurance, worker’s compensation insurance, etc..
Most marketing agencies require a monthly retainer between $1,000 and $3,000, which is significantly less than hiring a full-time marketing executive. Of course, you’ll have to spend additional money to cover the actual costs of your marketing efforts, but you would have to do that even if you hire an in-house person to do your marketing.
In addition to saving money, hiring a marketing agency will save you time and make your marketing efforts more efficient. The marketing agency’s job is to be efficient. It’s one of the reasons you hired them. It’s their responsibility to track performance, prepare reports, hold regular meetings to keep you in the loop.
If something is working really well and making money, you should do even more of it. This applies to your marketing efforts as well.
If you’re making a profit from your Facebook ads, you should spend more money and run more campaigns. You should also explore other similar advertising opportunities and try them out. Your marketing agency will most likely prompt you to do this, if they see that the existing marketing efforts are doing really well.
One of the best parts is that you won’t have to hire additional employees to do more marketing. The marketing agency already has a team of people who are ready to step in. All you have to do is give them the green light. The money that would have been spent on hiring new employees can be used to increase your marketing budget.
#6: Fresh Perspective
Just like with anything in life, it’s always a good idea to take a fresh look at the way things are being done to avoid boredom and complacency.
The marketing agency does this for you. Since their team members are outside of your dealership, they have a more objective take on what should and should not be done in terms of marketing. It’s their job to always be on the lookout for fresh ideas your dealership can benefit from.
The staff at your marketing agency are constantly talking to other marketing professionals to find out what they’re doing. They’re more likely to hear about a successful marketing campaign outside of your industry, and alert you to give it a try.
You can think of your marketing agency as a bee colony. Their team members are always out and about looking for fresh ideas that they can share with their clients. That’s how they remain relevant and valuable.
Social media is a perfect example where an outsider’s perspective can make a huge difference. It’s very easy to get stuck doing the same thing over and over in terms of your social media posts. This leads to boredom. Your marketing agency will most likely come in and give your social media presence a much needed makeover.
#7: Help for In-house Staff
Even if you’re not ready to hand over 100% of your marketing efforts to a marketing agency, you can still benefit by retaining one to help your in-house marketing staff.
If you’re like most motorcycle dealers, you probably don’t have an expert in-house marketing team. You probably have a marketing manager who is doing many things, including planning events and managing customer retention. He or she is able to squeeze in social media and other digital marketing tasks, but is not sure what is and is not working. He or she needs help, especially strategic direction.
This is where an outside marketing agency can make a huge impact. You can retain them to review your current marketing efforts, create a strategy for moving forward, and train your in-house marketing team to execute the newly created strategy. This will both empower your in-house team and also improve your marketing results.
This is a great way to provide support and professional training to your in-house staff. It will give them a fresh approach to their job and improve your marketing efforts.
#8: Access to the Latest Technology and Trends
One can easily spend days learning about the latest marketing technology and trends. It’s both exciting and crippling. Things are changing so much that it feels as if you’re always behind, unless you spend all your time doing research.
Once you find out about the latest marketing trends or technology, then you have to spend even more time to learn how to incorporate it into your marketing efforts. For example, is it a good or bad idea to use hashtags on Facebook? It is better to post square or rectangular images on Instagram?
Questions like these seem trivial, but they are not. Posting content in the ideal format for each social media platform affects how many people will see it. The platform deems your content more desirable if it’s posted corrected, which means that it will be shown to more people.
Let’s say that you recently heard that MailChimp is the way to go for email marketing. You go online and do research, and you realize that there are so many other email marketing service options like MailChimp. All of a sudden, you’re paralyzed by so many choices. You don’t have the time to thoroughly review all of them. You’re more than likely to give up and go back to what you’ve been doing. It feels the most comfortable.
In both of these cases, a marketing agency would be able to easily provide answers. They most likely have enough experience to objectively point you in the right direction. Better yet, they can take care of your social media management and email marketing. They have probably used MailChimp and can tell you if it’s the best fit for you.
Furthermore, your marketing agency may have access to exclusive, proprietary software that you wouldn’t be able to acquire on your own. This can give you a leg-up over your competitors.
#9: Immediate Start
A marketing agency can start as soon as hired. There’s no training. They know how to do their job from day one. Unlike with a new employee, no training is required.
According to the Society for Human Resource Management, it costs an average of $4,129 to train a new employee. We would also argue that it takes an average of six months for a new employee to feel fully comfortable with her or his new tasks.
Also, think about all the times you hired someone, spent a lot of time and money on training, and then they quit. Or, think about the time you hired someone who was a bad fit and you had to terminate them months later. Both cases are time-consuming and disappointing, and also put your dealership behind.
You won’t have to do any of this when you hire a marketing agency. The staff members they assign to handle your marketing efforts are already trained. They’ll need information from your dealership in order to do their job better, but you won’t need to train them. That’s a huge plus.
If the worst happens and you hire a marketing agency that’s not a great fit, you can easily terminate your arrangement and move on. Not much will be lost. You’ll be free to look for a new agency that can better serve your needs.
#10: Professional Sounding Board
You can think of your marketing agency as your partner in crime. They’re there to listen to your ideas and give you professional feedback. It’s in their best interest to recommend and co-sign the most effective ideas.
Your marketing agency will most likely know way more about whether or not something is a good idea than your in-house staff. Your employees may even be afraid to tell you when your idea is bad, which can cost you a lot of money.
It’s not uncommon for dealerships to suffer from groupthink. The best way to prevent that from happening at your store is to seek outside help.
But Wait. There’s More.
It’s possible, and more than likely, that we’ve forgotten to mention some other hugely important benefits of hiring a marketing agency. Still, we feel pretty good about our list of ten reasons.
If you’re not convinced at this stage, we encourage you to do more research.
Even better, if you have some other points that we should’ve mentioned, let us know in the comments below. Your advice may help other dealers who are trying to decide whether or not to hire outside marketing help.