A How to Guide for Dealers

Why Social? Marketing 101 says if you want to effectively reach your customers you have to be where they are, or “in the right place at the right time.” Social media represents the most widely utilized communication channel in existence. Salesforce reported 66% of all Internet usage occurs on social sites. Facebook takes the cake as the most widely used platform with 80% of Americans using it on a regular basis (talk about being where your customers are).

Why AutoHook Incentives? That’s an easy one. In order for a customer to redeem an AutoHook incentive, they have to physically walk into a dealership. We all know the chances of selling a vehicle drastically increase when you’re able to get shoppers off the Internet and into your store. But what AutoHook does that’s even more important than driving more showroom visits (yes there are more important things), is we use the most up-to-date sales match reporting to prove exactly which incentive offers resulted in a sale.  

Below are 10 ways to boost the revenue driving opportunities already available to you as an AutoHook customer. Simply reach out to your AutoHook Client Service Specialist (CSS) to implement any of the examples listed below. They will help you set up campaigns and make sure these efforts convert into sales or service appointments.


Plugging in an incentive into any social campaign is very simple to do. All AutoHook needs to know is the URL of the landing page you want to drive traffic to - whether it’s a specific vehicle, model, service offer, or special. We then provide you with a trackable link you can drop into any Facebook or social campaign. We attach a unique identifier to every offer so we can prove sales attribution for your store. Furthermore, we source out every link separately so that you can differentiate which specific AutoHook campaign converted into a showroom visit or sale in your CRM.

  • Customize Time Frame & Offer Amount: All we need from you is the landing page you’d like to promote, the value of the incentive you’d like to offer and the time frame in which you’d like the campaign to run.
  • Ex: Boost your new vehicle specials with a $50 offer.


We know no two dealers and no two markets are the same. Therefore, we don’t believe in one-size-fits-all solutions. Despite what vendors try to tell you, no one knows your pain points better than you. The most valuable data you have at your fingertips is your own customer data. Use this to pull targeted lists that address your unique needs and then work with a Client Service Specialist (CSS) to implement the campaign on social.

Here are a few examples to get the wheels turning:

  • Pull a list of customers who are in equity and provide an incentive for them to get into a new vehicle for the same monthly cost.
  • Consolidate a list of all active leads across all your 3rd party sources and retarget those individuals all in one place.
  • Use equity-mining software such as AutoAlert to identify all customers in your market who have upcoming contracts ending on a lease or purchase.
  • Target customers who visited your service drive but did not purchase from you.


Wouldn’t it help to know which leads in your CRM have already purchased so you don’t waste time and money trying to sell them? A high percentage of car buyers are only in market for a relatively short period of time. Through near real time sales data from Urban Science, AutoHook can help you identify which customers are no longer in market for a vehicle. No one (not even the OEMs) has access to this data within DAYS after sales transactions occur (rather weeks or months). Work with your CSS to create a suppression list of all the customers currently in your CRM that have already purchased a vehicle elsewhere.   


This is a HUGE and often undervalued aspect of the car business. Retention is half the battle. We know 30% of people will defect to a different brand after their lease is up. Use an incentive to ensure they come back to your store to test drive the newest model or any other vehicle they might be interested in. Mine your CRM data to find consumers who are “in equity” or who have a lease coming to term in the next 3-6 months.


Real Dealer Case Study: Germain Ford of Beavercreek

  • Using the data found within the MarketMaster tool and Urban Science’s shared sales database, AutoHook identified specific areas of opportunity for Germain Ford of Beavercreek to grow their market share by targeting the top three models they were losing to competitors (including the Ford Focus, Fusion, and Edge). We then implemented a $50 test-drive incentive on all Focus, Fusion and Edge VDPs and SRPs, while running social campaigns to drive traffic to those pages. The result was a 47% reduction in overall lost sales (pump-in). Click here to see the complete case study.

Can’t move a VIN off your lot? Try increasing the dollar amount of the test-drive incentive.


Utilizing Market Master, AutoHook can help you identify the zip codes in which you’re losing the most sales opportunities. We can also show you the areas with the highest levels of pump-in sales and increase the incentive offer to come in for a test-drive in those underperforming areas. This will help you take back market share from the top brand competitors in your market.

Never heard of Market Master? A lot of dealers don’t know this powerful revenue driver exists. Market Master is an Urban Science tool that uses near real-time sales data to identify the biggest areas of opportunity within your market. It’s typically located within your dealer portal through your OEM (currently available for Ford, FCA, Honda, Hyundai, Toyota, and Nissan). 


Go after the models you know you’re losing to competitive brands in your market. Tailor the creative and messaging in your social ads to express why your brand is the better choice. For example, “Before you go back into a new Ford F150 here’s a $50 Visa Gift Card to come in and test drive the Dodge Ram at Hometown Chrysler.”


Custom links can be embedded directly into your video ads on Facebook. Need to move more of a certain model, try offering $25-50 just for coming in to test-drive the featured vehicle. Chances are, if they’re watching the video, they’re already interested.


Running service specials? Why not promote them on social to get more exposure? Use incentives in your service and parts campaigns on social sites. Here are a few examples:

  • Schedule a service appointment and get a $25 Visa gift card.
  • Buy 4 tires get a $50 Visa Gift Card.
  • Get a $10 Amazon Gift Card just for getting your oil changed with us.


Memorial Day is coming up! Lift the performance of your limited time holiday offers with a $25 gift incentive (or an amount of your choice). Dealers spend countless amounts of money to get customers in the door. Why not spend another $25 to ensure the sale? This same idea can be deployed throughout the year to increase sales around the holidays and give wings to your current specials and holiday sales events. 

To conclude, the opportunities in which you can leverage AutoHook to boost the performance of your social campaigns are limitless. Plus you have the attribution reporting that goes along with it, so you know we’re delivering results in the form of sales and service revenue.

In January of 2017, AutoHook opened up our API so that other best in class technology vendors could tie in our incentive offers to their own existing solutions. SOCIALDEALER is the latest partner to join in our open API initiative. Current and future clients of SOCIALDEALER will see even higher form fill conversion rates on social due to their integration with AutoHook’s API. To learn more about the new capabilities of this partnership, click here.

BIG DATA: Are We Using it All Wrong?

By David Metter

Big data is a buzzword that’s been floating around the auto industry for some time now. Every dealership’s DMS is filled with opportunities. Through segmentation, data and equity mining, combined with a little bit of common sense, dealerships can target customers with relevant messaging and see great conversion rates. But what about reaching those people that aren’t your customers, or that aren’t in your database?

The typical answer has been to leverage other sources of data. Think of Facebook. It probably has the single largest repository of consumer information in the world. I’d be willing to bet that the depth of knowledge on any given Facebook user – demographics, behaviors and interests – would put any FBI file to shame. Smart marketers leverage this incredibly large database to market to individuals in their PMA with a high likelihood of purchasing a vehicle in the near future.  

But, what if everything we’ve been doing with demographic targeting has been wrong? 

According to a new blog article by Google, while demographic targeting has its uses, “marketers who try to reach their audiences solely on demographics risk missing more than 70 percent of potential mobile shoppers.” The blog goes on to explain that a customer’s identity is less important than a customer’s intent. The blog offered an example of how many may think that the largest demographic for video game users would be males, ages 18-34. However, if you were a video game (or related) company using demographic data alone to target customers, you’d be missing out on the 69 percent of searchers that aren’t in that group. It was certainly surprising to read that 56 percent of sporting good searchers on mobile were female; 45 percent of home improvement searchers on mobile were women; and 68 percent of skin and body care influencers in the past six months were men.

Essentially, the blog states that consumers aren’t necessarily doing the searching/shopping for themselves. For example, in the baby products category, 40 percent of purchasers live in households without children. Yet, who would think to target homes without children for baby products?

Google advises that businesses research their categories through Google Trends and adjust any marketing strategies accordingly. Identify relevant search terms and ensure that when a consumer searches for information on those terms, your business is present. According to Google’s research, “51 percent of smartphone users have purchased from a company/brand other than the one they intended to, because the information provided was useful.”

Targeting based on intent works well because typically, mobile searchers are very close to the point of purchase -- if not already in the process of purchasing. These are super low funnel consumers. For all you know, they are researching a vehicle, or gathering information, while at the dealership next door, or across the street.

While it is certainly in Google’s best interest to provide this message, it makes complete sense. That doesn’t mean you ignore demographic data in your marketing. It simply means that to take your marketing to the next level, consider incorporating intent-based marketing in the mix. This will help to ensure that you reach the customers you know about, but also the ones you don’t. 

What are you doing to prepare for 2012?


With the holiday season approaching, this is a great time to reflect on your accomplishments and begin to gear up for the next year. There is a lot of new stuff going on right now in the auto industry, and we at HookLogic are glad to be part of the coming era unfolding before our very eyes. In preparation for 2012, HookLogic has made some strategic commitments to help foster growth inside its new automotive division which recently hit market after years of testing and prototyping at various auto groups such as MileOne, Lithia, Suburban Collection, Herb Chambers, and others.

Adding momentum to its innovative solution set for automotive dealerships, several key players were added to the mix, including one of the most influential bloggers in automotive - Jeff Kershner, founder of DealerRefresh which is a leading thought-leadership and strategy source for car dealers and manufacturers. You can read more about this and other personnel additions here.

In addition to personnel additions, HookLogic also launched a new microsite to represent AutoHook not as a lead provider but as a show provider. The microsite can be found at www.leadtoshow.com. It offers rich information about the product, a live demo, and an opportunity to request a sales demo via phone, text, or email.

To top things off, HookLogic Automotive is also rolling out a monthly newsletter this month to more intimately inform and engage our current customers, friends, and allies, as well as our own Facebook page, Twitter handle @lead2show, and YouTube channel.

The newsletter will feature select content from the AutoHook team and also highlight other great content out there in the automotive blogosphere that we are sourcing and/or sharing across our social media channels. Please join us in one or more ways to let AutoHook be part of your online experience and we will be sure to reciprocate. You can subscribe to our blog using the sign up box in the sidebar.

Here's to the an adventurous and prosperous new year ahead.