Your email marketing shouldn’t take up more of your time than it is worth in terms of converting leads into car buying customers. Emails can generate quality leads, but relying on manual operation can be a waste of time. So how do you convert leads into customers with email automation?

Constant Contact, one of the leading email automation brands, points out that you can use email autoresponders to “help you target and send a series of personalized communications to your contacts.” Essentially, it helps you build relationships while still focusing on running your dealership. Want to find out how to convert email leads with automation? Read on for helpful tidbits.

First, Understand Your Clients

Before you can convert leads into customers from an email campaign, you have to understand your clients better. What are their needs when they visit your dealership website? What pain points might they be looking to address? Are they in search of a new/used vehicle? Are they looking for service from your mechanics on an existing vehicle previously purchased from your dealership?

Understanding these elements is vital. It will help you put together a well-thought-out email campaign that you can deploy with email automation.

Avoid “In-Your-Face” Sales Tactics

Customers often engage with dealerships and automotive brands online. This is because they don’t want to deal with a salesperson cornering them on the lot with aggressive sales tactics. Your email content should foster a more natural connection rather than pressing with sales content to help nurture a potential lead into a buying customer. Email automation should be used to provide your leads with relevant content that addresses the pain points and needs identified earlier. These include promotional posts like “10 Things to Look For When Buying a New Car” or “5 Common Mistakes When Buying Used Cars.” 

Focus on Smart Content

Email automation shouldn’t be viewed as a chance to constantly reach out to leads. Rather, it should be used as a tool used to nurture potential leads along the path to purchase. As such, you should focus on smart content that paints your dealership as an authoritative voice that addresses their needs. Ask questions that encourage a response from the reader. For example: “We see you’ve been looking at Ford Mustangs, do you have a preference on new or used?”

Include a link in your emails to reviews of your dealership, salespeople, and overall experiences working with your brand. Most importantly, keep your emails concise. Remember that most viewers are likely to read these emails on their mobile devices, so content should be short but sweet.

Discover the Goldilocks Zone

The true beauty of email automation is the ability to schedule automatic responses to initial inquiries from leads, as well as establishing a regular email/newsletter blast that keeps your brand in the consumer’s mind. On the former point, the Harvard Business Review highlighted that leads are 21 times more likely to convert when contacted via email within five minutes of initial contact that at the 30-minute mark.

Sadly, far too many businesses fail in this respect with:

Average response times to leads at 42 hours.

24% of companies taking more than 24 hours.

23% never responding at all,.

And only 37% responding within an hour.  

On the latter point, email automation should be used sparingly to reach out to your leads. Receiving too many emails is often the primary reason leads unsubscribe and fail to enter the sales funnel. You have to strike a balance between having too many touch points with your customers and not enough.

At a bare minimum, your email automation should reach out to leads with a simple welcome email. It should provide a brief, but valuable piece of content that addresses a pain point or answers a question. It’s wise to include a testimonial and helpful to use promotional offers as a CTA to convert those leads to customers. 

If you’re serious about addressing lead conversion using email automation, Engauge can help your dealership clear these hurdles. Click here, and you’ll receive a free email marketing audit to help you discover the ideal email automation scheme for your dealership!