Tax season isn’t the most eagerly anticipated time of year for most of us, and it can often be a challenging time for dealers. In years past, tax season would typically last 60-90 days, but due to the Protect Americans from Tax Hikes (PATH) Act that passed in 2015, this year’s tax season has shrunk closer to a one-two week time period.
Tax season is a prime time for potential shoppers to use their refunds to purchase a vehicle. So essentially, a shorter tax season generates an overwhelming amount of loan requests into a shorter time period, making it more difficult to qualify loan candidates looking to use their tax refunds as down payments.
However, dealers should not fear this short tax season – they can still implement strategic digital campaigns to maximize sales during this time.
Our digital strategy experts over at LotLinx have put together five different campaign ideas to help dealers get ahead of the buying cycle and showcase their used/new inventory to potential in-market buyers.
Campaign #1: “I need the lowest payment”
Although a lot of buyers are always looking for a low monthly payment, customers who rely on their tax refund for a down payment often tend to need the lowest payment possible.
To accommodate this shopper, dealers should create a campaign for used VINs, investing about $10-$18K with three or more images.
Depending on the contract length and amount of the down payment, most of these cars will cost about $200-$300 a month – which is ideal for this customer type.
Campaign #2: “I need something cheap & I want to pay cash”
Shoppers who receive their tax refund many times also add cash out of their own pockets to purchase an inexpensive vehicle they can simply pay for and walk away without a payment.
To appeal to this shopper, we suggest creating a campaign for used VINs under $10K, with more than one image.
These inexpensive VINs are typically good “gross-profit” makers for the dealership, and their days on lot tend to be lower. Overall, it’s a “win-win” for both the shopper and dealer.
Campaign #3: “You have a WHAT on your lot?”
Sometimes shoppers don’t realize they could purchase a VW at a Ford Store or a Camry at an Audi Dealership. A campaign devoted to making “ready to buy shoppers” aware of the off brand inventory you have on lot could be a game changer.
To accomplish this, dealers can set up a campaign targeting used, non-branded VINs worth $8K or more, with one or more image.
Pairing this campaign with the “gross-profit” makers described above can increase demand of your non-branded inventory.
Campaign #4: “Let me upgrade you with a NEW Car”
Many times, shoppers come into a dealership with a used car in mind, but end up taking home a new car because they have extra cash in hand for a down payment causing a low monthly payment.
For these shoppers, we would suggest a campaign for new VINs that have been on lot for 30 days or more, with three or more images, under $15-$25K.
When dealers focus on low priced “entry-level models, it can help move stubborn VINs simultaneously.
Campaign #5: “Low Lease Offers”
OEM’s and dealers alike drive interest in new models by advertising a very low monthly lease payment. However, what most consumers don’t realize is that low payment usually requires a couple to few thousand dollars down.
To appeal to this shopper, dealers should create campaigns targeting new VINs with lease incentives, because many times customers end up not purchasing a car because the payment is too high without a down payment. However with tax refunds, shoppers could potentially have the extra cash in hand to achieve the low, advertised payment.
Any of these campaigns are simple to implement at your dealership and are guaranteed to bring additional foot traffic to your showroom and help move these cars off your lot.
If you’d like to learn more about strategic tax season campaign ideas, call us at 1-800-625-5469 or schedule a demo with one of our digital strategy experts today!